UKRAINE (May 11, 2022)—As the Ukraine-Russian war enters its 77th day, we take a look at the main developments.
- The governor of Kharkiv region said attacks are intensifying, particularly in residential areas, with 44 bodies of civilians found under a destroyed building in Russian controlled eastern town of Izium.
- Ukrainian officials claim the country’s forces have recaptured villages from Russian troops north and northeast of Kharkiv.
- Russian forces shelled the border regions of Sumy and Chernihiv, and continued attacks on the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol, where the city’s last defenders are holed up.
- Ukraine “successfully” struck Russian air defenses and resupply vessels in the western Black Sea, the United Kingdom Ministry of Defense reported.
- The civilian death toll in Ukraine is “thousands higher” than the official United Nations figure of 3,381, according to the head of the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine.
Diplomacy and aid
- The United States House of Representatives has approved a bill of $40bn aid package to provide Ukraine with military and economic assistance, $7bn more than President Joe Biden requested in April.
- Moscow announced that “liberated” areas in southern Ukraine would be part of Russia.
- Two US senators introduced a resolution to list Russia as a “state sponsor of terrorism”, citing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and prior support for fighters in Syria and Chechnya.
- German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock promised accountability and justice for war crimes committed by Russian forces in Bucha and the rest of Ukraine.
- Canada has contributed $2.5m to the UN to report on human rights violations in Ukraine.
- The new leader of the Georgian breakaway region of South Ossetia said on Wednesday it would wait for a signal from Moscow before holding a referendum on joining Russia.
- Ukraine’s main gas system operator announced it will stop the flow of gas through the Sokhranivka entry point with reports of a top Ukrainian energy official threatening to sue Russia’s Gazprom if it does not pay for the transit of its natural gas via Ukraine.
- Greece will finish building a pipeline to Bulgaria, ending Russia’s gas monopoly in the region.
- Hungary’s foreign minister called for Russian shipments via pipelines to be exempted from planned European Union oil sanctions against Moscow that Hungary says could destroy its economy.
- Moldova’s national gas supplies have been unaffected by Ukraine’s decision to stop some gas transit from Russia, Moldova’s national gas operator, Moldovagaz, said.
- Russia was behind a cyberattack against a satellite internet network in central Europe, the US, UK, Canada and the EU said.
- Russia’s embassy in the US denied its involvement in the cyberattack and labelled the allegations as “absurd”.
Human Cost Of War
The UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine confirmed that more than 3,380 civilians have been killed since 24 February, and over 3,680 injured.
“We heard about snipers on roofs who would just shoot fairly randomly at civilians when they would cross the road, I assume as a form of trying to keep people in their houses and discourage them from going out,” said Mission head Matilda Bogner.
Many Ukrainians are missing and their family members continue to search for missing relatives and friends – mainly young men – some of whom may have been taken to Belarus and then Russia, the UN official said.
The high number of non-combatant casualties and massive destruction of civilian infrastructure strongly point to indiscriminate attacks, which are a violation of the rules of war, Matilda Bogner asserted.
Source: United Nations and Aljazeera contributed to the article.