The 35th day of the war in Ukraine: Russia announced to focus on Donbass
Russia said it was “regrouping” its forces near Kiev and Chernihiv to focus on other key areas and complete the “liberation” of Donbass.
“All the main tasks of the Russian Armed Forces in Kiev and Chernihiv have been completed. The forces are being regrouped to intensify actions in priority areas and above all to complete the liberation of Donbass,” the statement said. Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said on March 30.
A day earlier, Russia had announced it would scale back its operations near Kiev and Chernihiv to promote peace talks.
Konashenkov said that Russia has completed the first phase, which involves “tying up” enemy forces and equipment by forcing them to defend in large population centers such as Kiev. The spokesman explained that Russia does not intend to massively attack these cities, but rather wants to attack Ukrainian forces to the extent that they cannot deploy to the Donbass – the current main focus of the military operation.
The Donbass region includes two self-proclaimed people’s republics that Russia has recognized as independent. The leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic Denis Pushilin said on March 30 that offensive operations were intensifying. “We are well aware that the longer it takes to liberate our territory – the settlements currently under Ukrainian control, the more victims and devastation.”
On March 25, the director of the Operations Department of the General Staff of the Russian Army Sergei Rudskoy said that the separatists in eastern Ukraine controlled 93% of the area of Lugansk province and 54% of Donetsk region.
Ukrainian authorities on March 30 accused Russian forces of continuing to attack the city Chernihiv in the north of the country, despite Moscow’s statement after the negotiations.
In southern Ukraine, fighting is still serious. Ukrainian authorities accuse Russian forces of attacking a Red Cross facility in the port city Mariupol. It was not immediately clear when the attack occurred or whether there were casualties.
After the latest round of negotiations in Turkey, the head of the Russian delegation, Vladimir Medinsky, said that Ukraine claims it ready to fulfill the request Moscow show over the years.
According to Medinsky, Ukraine has written in writing that it is ready to give up its ambition to join NATO, apply the status of “non-membership”, not possess nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction. , committed not to accept foreign troops or military bases on their territory.
Medinsky also said Ukraine agreed not to conduct military exercises with foreign troops unless there was an agreement with some other countries, including Russia.
However, Russia insists that it still holds the demand for Ukraine to recognize Crimea as part of Russia and recognize the independence of two breakaway territories in eastern Ukraine.
The Ukrainian side has not commented on Medinsky’s statement.
Rafael Grossi, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), has been in Ukraine since March 29 to meet government officials and send experts and equipment “to help prevent the risk of a nuclear accident”. On March 30, he visited the South Ukraine nuclear power plant, near the city of Yuzhnoukrainsk in the Mykolaiv province. The IAEA did not say how long Grossi’s visit to Ukraine would last.
President Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky gave a speech to the Norwegian parliament on the same day, in which he proposed to be provided with more weapons and Calling on Europe to close ports with Russian ships.
Mr. Zelensky also called on Norway, the second largest gas supplier to Europe, after Russiaproviding more energy to Ukraine and the EU in the context that these countries do not want to depend on energy sources from Moscow.
Like previous speeches to parliaments of other countries, the President of Ukraine continued to call for additional weapons support, including anti-ship missiles, armored vehicles and air defense systems.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said more 4 million Ukrainians have been evacuated from the country since the conflict, of which more than 2.3 million people have entered neighboring Poland.
Ngoc Anh (According to TASS/RT/Reuters)
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