Ukraine announces heavy losses to Russia in Donbass – 04/29/2022 at 16:36

Ukraine says it caused heavy losses to Russia in Donbass

by Natalia Zenets

Kyiv (Reuters) – Ukrainian authorities admitted incurring heavy losses in the Donbass River on Friday, but said they inflicted more “heavy” losses on the Russian army, which seized the eastern Ukrainian region as a top priority.

After the failure of its initial attack on Kyiv, Russia is focusing its efforts on occupying all the territories of the administrative regions of Donetsk and Luhansk, parts of which have been controlled by pro-Russian separatists since 2014.

Ukraine has acknowledged the loss of some small towns and villages close to the front lines since the “Battle of Donbass” began last week, but says the slow progress of Russian forces comes at the cost of already higher losses for those who suffered in the war. The month of fighting north of Kyiv.

Ukraine’s presidential adviser, Oleksiy Aristovich, declared, “We are incurring huge losses, but the losses of the Russians are greater. They are enormous.”

For the Kyiv authorities, the challenge is to resist as long as possible to allow the delivery of heavy weapons that have been promised by the West in recent days, and in particular to the United States, whose President Joe Biden asked Congress on Thursday to release the heavy weapons. An unprecedented amount of $33 billion, including $20 billion in military aid.

Faced with the quantitative and qualitative acceleration of Western aid to Ukraine, Moscow has in recent days doubled down on threats of “world war”, even a possible nuclear strike, while increasing pressure on European countries to cut off gas to Poland and Bulgaria.

Journalist murdered in Kyiv

Russia also admitted firing two missiles on Thursday at buildings in central Kyiv at the end of a meeting between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who had previously visited the towns of Borodinka, Bucha and Irpin, where he denounced Russia’s “war crimes”.

A Ukrainian journalist, producer of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, was killed when a rocket exploded opening the first two floors of the apartment building she was living in, her Prague employer said Friday, in the Czech Republic. Republic.

Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko said Russia’s “brutality is incomprehensible” and called on media around the world to condemn “the murder of Vera Herich and all other innocent Ukrainians.”

The Russian Defense Ministry said it launched high-precision missiles at a space production plant.

“Kyiv is still a dangerous place and of course it is still a target for the Russians. The capital of Ukraine remains their target and they want to occupy it,” the city’s mayor, Vitali Klitschko, said while inspecting the damage.

According to the Ukrainian presidency, the Russian army is bombing the front line in the Donetsk region using all the means at its disposal: missiles, artillery and aerial bombardment.

British intelligence reported heavy fighting around the towns of Lyschansk and Severodonetsk in the Luhansk region and an attempt by the Russian army to advance south from Izyum towards Slovensk.

The British Ministry of Defense said: “Because of the strong Ukrainian resistance, Russian territorial gains were limited and the Russian forces sustained significant losses.”

“Rescue” from Hell in Mariupol

In Mariupol, no humanitarian solution was found for hundreds of civilian refugees accompanied by an unspecified number of Ukrainian fighters in the fortified cellars of the Azovstal metallurgical plant, the last stronghold of the Ukrainian resistance.

Antonio Guterres said he was ready to help find a solution before Russian missiles hit Kyiv, and the Ukrainian presidency reported an evacuation of civilians on Friday, without further details. All previous attempts failed.

In the ruins of the city captured by Russian forces, aid workers began collecting corpses, and residents told Reuters the atrocities of the siege and constant bombardment.

“We were hungry and the children were crying when Grads (Russian multiple launchers) exploded next to the house,” testifies Victoria Nikolaeva, 54, who tells that she and her family escaped by taking refuge in her basement. “We said to ourselves, ‘This is it, this is the end. It was indescribable.'”

“It was a massacre,” agrees Vitaly Kudasov, 71. “It was terrifying to see the shells flying over our heads,” he says. “We can’t survive such a thing. However, here we are.”

According to the Ukrainian authorities, about 100,000 people still live in the port city, which is about a quarter of its pre-war population.

Some residents of Mariupol managed to flee to Ukraine over a period of weeks, others were taken to Russia, often by force, and their Moscow presented as victims of Ukrainian bombing, particularly the “neo-Nazis” of the Azov regiment.

(Reporting by Natalia Zenets in Kyiv, with contributions from Reuters journalists in Mariupol under Russian occupation, French version Tanguy Salone, Editing by Bertrand Bossy)

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