Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday warned his compatriots not to take worries about a possible air attack lightly. They sound several times a day in the main cities of the country and after two long months of war, few people take them seriously.
This weekend, however, the Kiev government fears that the army will further intensify long-range rocket and artillery attacks on urban areas. “Don’t ignore the sirens,” Zelenskiy said in his daily televised address. Your life and the lives of your children are at stake.
On Monday, Russia celebrates the traditional Victory Day.
This Monday, Russia celebrates Victory Day, one of the most important holidays on the calendar. It is dedicated to the victory of the Soviet Army over Nazi Germany. President Vladimir Putin will lead a military parade on Moscow’s Red Square and deliver a solemn speech about the “special campaign” his army is conducting in Ukraine.
However, the Russian army is far from victory in Ukraine. He hasn’t had any major wins yet. Therefore, the Ukrainian General Staff is concerned about pressure on the enemy side in order to obtain a large trophy before Monday.
Either way, it won’t be easy. The Ukrainian army strikes back at Kharkov. Little by little, almost meter by meter, he manages to delay the positions of the Russian artillery. He has been doing this for several days and is close to bringing the city out of the range of Russian guns.
However, in Donbass the situation is reversed. There, the Russians are itching against the Ukrainians. They fight at the gates of the city of Severodonetsk, the square from which they can advance towards Kramatorsk, the ultimate goal of the campaign.
The Russian offensive in the Dobass, according to British military intelligence, is not only slow, but also requires a lot of ammunition, weapons and troops. Destroyed at least one T-90M tank, one of the most advanced in the Russian army.
The loss is symbolic, but important, because this tank theoretically has a good system of protection against enemy artillery. It will be almost impossible to replace it, because sanctions prevent Russia from buying components, especially microelectronics, which are part of all advanced weapons.
Diplomacy, meanwhile, is doing its job carefully. The UN and the Red Cross managed to keep the humanitarian corridor in Mariupol open. On Friday, they managed to save fifty civilians at the Azovstal metallurgical plant. Among them were eleven children. Many more remain inside, and today, at sunset, the third and final day of the truce ends.
The work of releasing the stuck people is very hard. Not only because the ruins have to be removed by hand to open escape routes, but also because Ukrainian soldiers trying to help are under fire from Russian positions. On Friday, one person died and six were injured.
Zelenskiy, who has ordered his people not to surrender, says he is working on a diplomatic option so they too can be saved.
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