It has been a week since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an offensive against Ukraine from the east, south and north. from the country. Attacks are intensifying in key cities as all eyes have turned to the second round of negotiations on this eighth day of hostilities.
- Russia and Ukraine have agreed to establish humanitarian corridors during the second round of talks that both delegations have held in Belarus. It is the first time that both countries agree on some kind of advance since the Russian invasion and this was one of the main objectives of Kiev, along with achieving a ceasefire and an armistice. After concluding the meeting, the advisor to the Ukrainian presidential office, Majaíl Podolyak, assured that, without being “the expected results”, both sides have agreed to establish humanitarian corridors. This means that channels will be established to facilitate the safe circulation, free of attacks, of humanitarian aid and of the victims of the conflict.
- The governor of the eastern Donetsk region has said that the port city of Mariupol, one of the first targets of the invasion and where the authorities have denounced continuous bombing that does not allow them to help the wounded, is without electricity or water supply, according to Reuters. In Chernigov, near Kiev, emergency services say they have recovered the bodies of 33 people from the rubble and 18 have been injured as a result of the attacks.
- The governor the oblast of KhersonHennadiy Lahuta, said on Facebook that Russian forces have completely occupied the regional administration building. “However, we have not abandoned our duties.” In the strategic city of Kherson, located northwest of the Crimean peninsula in the Black Sea, Russian troops entered the City Hall building, as reported by the mayor on Wednesday night. The New York Times and the BBC have reported that the city has been captured by the russians – which also claim to have taken control of the southern town – making it the first significant urban center to fall. In his latest Facebook post, the mayor assures that the Ukrainian flag continues to fly over the city, but for this several conditions must be met, including a curfew and limitations on moving around the city. “I made no promises to them. (…) I just asked them not to shoot people, ”he says. Other international media such as the AP agency say that the state of the city remains unclear. The British Ministry of Defense, which has significant intelligence capabilities in the region, indicates that “some” Russian forces “have entered the city of Kherson, but the military situation remains unclear.”
- New explosions have been recorded in the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, and in the country’s second largest city, Kharkov. In the Kharkov region, in the east of the country, Russian bombardments and attacks have caused the death of 34 civilians in the last 24 hours, between March 2 and 3, as reported by the emergency services on Thursday. in Kyiv, up to 15,000 people take refuge in the subway to escape hostilities, according to city authorities.
- According to UK intelligence, the main body of the large Russian column advancing towards Kiev is still more than 30 kilometers from the city centre, “delayed by strong Ukrainian resistance, mechanical breakdowns and traffic jams”. “The column has made little discernible progress in more than three days,” he says. “Despite heavy Russian bombardment, the cities of Kharkiv, Chernigov and Mariupol remain in Ukrainian hands.” According to the latest evaluation of the Institute for the Study of War, based in Washington, operations to encircle the capital are Moscow’s main effort, but Russian troops are also carrying out three supporting actions: one to take Kharkiv, another to take Mariupol and secure the “land bridge” connecting Rostov-on-Don (Russia ) with the Crimea, and another to secure Kherson and establish the conditions for an advance westward towards Mykolaiv and Odessa.
- Before the negotiations began in Belarus, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov He has assured that Moscow will continue with its military operation in Ukraine until “the end”. “All invaders must know: they will face fierce rejection from the Ukrainians and will remember forever that we will not give up what is ours,” he said. President Volodymyr Zelensky, who has been willing to speak directly with Putin. “It’s the only way to stop the war,” he said. The Russian president has described the invasion as “successful”.
- Hundreds of thousands of people are fleeing the country in search of safety. One week after the invasion, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has announced that more than a million people they have fled from Ukraine to neighboring countries since February 24, the day it began. The vast majority have fled to Poland, but also to Hungary, Moldova, Romania, Slovakia, as well as Russia. Acnur has warned these days that, at this rate, it seems that the situation “will become Europe’s biggest refugee crisis of this century.
- As attacks intensify, the total number of victims remains unclear and proving difficult to verify, so known figures are almost certainly higher. The office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has said that as of midnight on March 2 there have been 802 civilian casualties, including 249 dead and 553 wounded. “Most of these casualties were caused by the use of explosive weapons with a wide impact area, including heavy artillery shelling and multiple launch missile systems, and air strikes.” the ukrainian military They have said Although Russia has lost some 9,000 troops, it is not clear how many of them are prisoners. Moscow acknowledged this Wednesday the first casualties among its ranks, although several times less than those announced by Ukraine: it says 498 Russian servicemen have been killed and almost 1,600 have been wounded.
- The boss of the Russian National Defense Center, Colonel General Mikhail Mizintsev, He has said he expects a “humanitarian catastrophe” in the Ukrainian cities of Kiev, Mariupol, Kharkov and Sumy.
- In his calculation of Russian losses, Ukraine claims to have destroyed 217 tanks, 900 armored vehicles, more than 130 artillery and multiple launch missile systems, more than 60 planes and helicopters, as well as several ships and drones. The Russian Defense Ministry has also claimed to have destroyed several air and missile defense systems, radars and aircraft.
- International Amnesty has documented three attacks in Kharkiv that killed at least nine civilians, including children, on February 28.
- The International Criminal Court (ICC) has confirmed that it is opening an investigation on possible war crimes in Ukraine after being urged to do so by 39 states and he has begun collecting evidence.
- Many experts worry that Moscow has changed tactics, with Russian heavy artillery and airstrikes hitting built-up areas. Ukrainian emergency services They have accused Russia of destroying “hundreds of transport infrastructure, residential buildings, hospitals and nurseries” during these seven days of war. The World Health Organization (WHO) has said be “deeply concerned” by the humanitarian emergency in Ukraine and the information that is arriving about attacks on facilities and health workers. The WHO, which is verifying several incidents, has confirmed that a hospital “was attacked with heavy weapons” last week, killing four people and injuring ten, including six health workers. “Attacks on healthcare violate international humanitarian law.”
- The International Paralympic Committee has decided to pull out of the Winter Games from 2022 to Russian and Belarusian athletes. has announced it it’s a statement in which they explain that although they believe “that sports and politics should not mix”, the war in Ukraine has reached the Games. The decision affects 83 athletes.
- The French President, Emmanuel Macron, has met this Tuesday again with Putin. It is the third time they have spoken during the invasion, according to Elysium. “You’re lying to yourself,” he has told the Russian president, according to sources he has cited. Guardian, who assure that he has underlined that the war is going to “cost Russia dearly”, that it will end up “isolated, weakened and under sanctions for a long time”. “The worst is yet to come,” Macron said.
- The The United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday voted overwhelmingly in favor of a resolution which condemns the Russian invasion of Ukraine and demands the immediate withdrawal of its forces. 141 of the 193 member states have voted in favor of the resolution and thirty have abstained, including China. Although the resolutions of the General Assembly are not binding, they carry political weight and in this case it is considered to be a global expression of rejection which highlights Moscow’s growing isolation.
This article is constantly updated.