Zelensky claims gains in counteroffensive near Kharkiv

Ukrainian soldiers train on howitzers in Germany

The first Ukrainian soldiers trained on the 2000 howitzer have arrived in Germany, the German Defense Ministry confirmed to NBC News on Wednesday.

Up to 18 Ukrainian soldiers will be trained in artillery in the town of Idar-Oberstein in the southwestern German state of Rhineland-Palatinate. Howitzers are mid-range surface-to-surface guns used to support ground forces in defensive or offensive maneuvers.

“This is the first time soldiers of the Ukrainian Armed Forces have received training on the 2000 howitzer in Germany,” a defense ministry spokesman said.

Since the start of the war, the United States has provided Ukraine with dozens of howitzers, as well as ammunition and drones, in addition to humanitarian and economic aid. On Tuesday, the House approved a new $40 billion aid package for Ukraine.

The highway to kyiv

Ukraine recaptures villages from Russian troops around Kharkiv

Bombings in Kharkiv

Views of Kharkiv in Ukraine as Russian attacks continue
A local man examines the damage to his destroyed house in Vilkkhivka, near Kharkiv, Ukraine, May 9, 2022.Diego Herrera/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

EU’s proposed Russian oil ban would devastate Hungarian economy, says foreign minister

The European Union‘s proposed ban on Russian oil would devastate Hungary’s economy, Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said on Wednesday.

An agreement between Budapest and the EU on the proposed ban seemed unlikely, he said, according to Reuters. “Brussels has no proposal for a solution (…) that could handle the atomic bomb-like effects of this potential oil embargo against Russia on the Hungarian economy,” Szijjarto said in a video posted on his page. Facebook, according to Reuters.

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban also called the proposal an economic “atomic bomb” on public radio earlier this month. Hungary is one of the main critics of the EU’s proposed ban and each of the bloc’s 27 members must back the plan for it to pass.

South Kherson region will ask Putin to join Russia, says pro-Russian official

A Moscow-based official in the Kherson region of southern Ukraine said the Russian-occupied region would appeal directly to President Vladimir Putin to accept him to Russia, the state news agency reported. Cup.

The planned move was announced on Wednesday by Kirill Stremousov, deputy head of the region’s so-called military-civilian administration, according to Tass. The administration was installed in late April after Russian forces deposed Ukrainian officials in the area.

The strategic region with access to the Black Sea has been under Russian control since the early days of the war.

There has been much speculation about Russia’s intentions for its future, with observers suggesting it could be transformed into a ‘people’s republic’ similar to those controlled by pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine. or annexed as the Crimean Peninsula in 2014.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Wednesday that residents of the region should decide for themselves whether or not to appeal for the region to join Russia, and that such a possibility should have a clear legal justification, according to Tass.

Russian forces placed landmines around Kharkiv, Ukraine says

Russian forces placed landmines in areas of Kharkiv they occupied, the region’s army chief warned.

“The enemy has completely undermined everything,” Oleh Sinegubiv said in a post on Telegram. He warned residents to be wary of returns to areas where the Russian military had recently been driven out and where schools, kindergartens and private homes had been mined. Teams were clearing the area, while essential infrastructure such as gas and electricity were also being restored, he said.

Ukrainian forces have in recent days pushed Russian troops out of areas they had occupied earlier in the war, retaking several towns in the Kharkiv region.

More than 100 hospitals destroyed in Ukraine, according to the Ministry of Health

Russian forces have destroyed 101 hospitals and shot down or captured 200 ambulances since the invasion began on February 24, Ukraine’s Health Ministry said in a Facebook post on Wednesday.

The claims came as the head of the Luhansk region said on Tuesday that Russian forces had taken equipment from local hospitals and schools in the town of Kreminna, located east between Kharkiv and Luhansk, and the sent to Russia.

“The Russians were shocked by the equipment in our hospitals, so they didn’t delay and in the first days of the occupation began to dismantle the equipment and transport it to Luhansk or Russia,” said the regional governor, Serhiy Haidai, in a message. on his Telegram channel.

Gas shortages hit Ukraine

ON THE ROAD TO KYIV, Ukraine — Driving anywhere in Ukraine these days takes a lot of planning due to the fuel shortage in the country.

On the approximately 340-mile journey between Lviv and the capital, Kyiv, many gas stations are closed because they have run out of fuel.

Some service stations still open only contain service trucks, agricultural vehicles, ambulances, police cars and other essential vehicles. Even then, most gas stations have imposed a limit on the amount of gasoline allowed per vehicle.

For ordinary Ukrainians, it can be difficult to find gas stations that serve them. And the lines can be brutally long.

Christmas socks for refugees in Odessa

Volunteer Irena Bazina gives Christmas socks to Masha Severin, 6, at a refugee distribution center in Odessa on May 3, 2022.Erin Trieb for NBC News

Mariupol mayor warns over 10,000 people could die by year’s end

More than 10,000 people could die by the end of the year in the southern port city of Mariupol, now mostly occupied by Russian forces, the mayor said on Wednesday.

“The humanitarian situation in Mariupol is now catastrophic,” Mayor Vadim Boichenko said in a message on Telegram. “There are no medicines or doctors, a normal water supply, the sewers are not working, etc.”

He warned that without functioning drinking water and sewers, epidemics could break out in the city, especially with a population made up mostly of the sick and elderly. About 100,000 civilians are still present in the southern port city and are waiting to be evacuated, the mayor said on Tuesday.

Zelenskyy thanks Pelosi, House for approving Ukrainian aid

Ukraine halts Russian gas flows to areas occupied by Moscow

The Ukrainian pipeline operator said on Wednesday it would stop the flow of Russian natural gas to a key hub in the east of the country currently occupied by Russian forces.

The operator, GTSOU, said in a statement that it “cannot carry out operational and technological control” over the Novopskov compressor station, located in Lugansk, which handles around a third of the Russian gas that passes through the Ukraine to Europe, as well as other assets in the region.

The operator said it would redirect the gas flow to a facility in the south under Ukrainian control.

The European Union is pushing for a ban on Russian oil imports into its 27 member states, designed to hit Russia’s national finances.

Faces of Azovstal

A wounded Ukrainian soldier sits under the beleaguered Azovstal steelworks in Mariupol on May 10, 2022.
A wounded Ukrainian soldier sits under the beleaguered Azovstal steelworks in Mariupol on May 10, 2022. Courtesy of Orest Kozatskyi

Ukraine advances in northeast counteroffensive against Russian forces

The Ukrainian army has recovered territory in the northeast of the country, making gains against Russian forces and pushing them back towards the border.

“The occupiers are gradually being pushed out of Kharkiv Oblast,” President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Tuesday evening, adding that invading troops had been driven out of four villages in the area.

Ukrainian forces could be within six miles of the Russian border, according to the Institute for the Study of War. Russian forces in the Izyum region, located about 120 km southeast of Kharkiv, have reportedly redeployed north in an attempt to halt Ukraine’s advance, its daily update said on Tuesday after- noon.

The Kharkiv region, including the big city itself, came under heavy attack early in the war, and many of its buildings were destroyed by Russian strikes.

Ukraine hits Russian supply ships with drones, UK says

The Ukrainian army has successfully attacked Russian supply ships with drones, the British Ministry of Defense announced on Wednesday.

Ukraine has launched successful attacks on air defenses and supply ships with Bayraktar drones, the Defense Ministry said in a daily intelligence update.

“Russian supply ships have minimal protection in the western Black Sea, following the withdrawal of the Russian Navy to Crimea following the loss of the Moskva,” the ministry said in a statement. statement.

Meanwhile, fighting continues on Zmiinyi Island, also known as Snake Island, the UK said. If Russia consolidates its position on the island, “it could dominate the northwest Black Sea,” the ministry said. The island lies off the southwest coast of Ukraine, south of Odessa.

House passes $40 billion package to provide military and humanitarian aid

The House on Tuesday night passed legislation that would provide $40 billion in new aid to Ukraine as the Biden administration seeks to bolster US support for kyiv in its war against Russia.

The House voted 368 to 57 after President Joe Biden urged quick action by Congress and Republicans balked at spending an additional $10 billion in Covid relief funds alongside military and humanitarian aid to Ukraine. . The 57 invalid votes came from Republicans.

The additional funding measure is now heading to the Senate. GOP Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday he asked Biden last week to separate coronavirus aid from funding for Ukraine.

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