At the Azovstal plant, the last of the entrenched Ukrainian fighters are still fighting against the Russian army tightening its grip on this last pocket of resistance in Mariupol. On the diplomatic side, the Ukrainian president should participate in the meeting via videoconference of the leaders of the G7 superpowers. Follow the latest developments live.
4:11 pm: Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in Irvine
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced that Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visited the suburb of Irbin in Kyiv, the city devastated by heavy fighting and occupied by the Russians in March.
Oleksandr Markushin wrote on Telegram: “He (Justin Trudeau) came to Irben to see with his own eyes all the horrors that the Russian occupiers of our city have committed.”
3:46 pm: Surprise visit of Jill Biden, first lady of the United States
After Romania and Slovakia, where she met Ukrainian refugees, Jill Biden traveled to Ukraine on Sunday for a surprise visit, her spokesperson announced. There she met the wife of the Ukrainian president, Olena Zelenska, at a school near the Slovak border.
“I wanted to come to celebrate Mother’s Day,” she told reporters. “I thought it was important to show the Ukrainian people that this war had to stop. The American people are on their side with the Ukrainian people.”
This Mother’s Day, I wanted to be with Ukrainian mothers and their children.
Over the past few months, too many Ukrainians have had to flee their homes – forcing them to leave loved ones behind. pic.twitter.com/zjtMv5ey0B
– Jill Biden (@FLOTUS) May 8, 2022
3:20 p.m.: U2’s Bono and The Edge perform in the Kyiv metro
Singer Bono and guitarist The Edge of the Band U2 went to the metro in the Ukrainian capital to give a concert, at the invitation of President Volodymyr Zelensky.
Bono and The Edge of U2 perform in a subway concert # Kyiv“As a sign of solidarity with the Ukrainian people” and at the invitation of President Zelensky (who held a press conference there two weeks ago). pic.twitter.com/ObZVDih3II
– Nicholas Berrod (@nicolasberrod) May 8, 2022
2:25 pm: For Ukrainian troops in Azovstal, ‘surrender is not an option’
The Ukrainian soldiers, holed up for several weeks in the underground galleries of the huge steelworks at Azovstal, the last bastion of resistance against the Russian army in the ruined port of Mariupol (southeast), announced that they had ruled out surrender.
“Surrender is not an option because Russia is not interested in our lives. They don’t care about leaving us alive,” Ukrainian intelligence officer Ilya Samoylenko said during a news conference broadcast on the video.
12:24 p.m.: “As in 1945, victory will be ours,” Vladimir Putin assured
Russian President Vladimir Putin asserted that “as in 1945, victory will be ours”, striking comparisons between World War II and the conflict in Ukraine in his wishes on May 8.
“Today, our soldiers, like their ancestors, are fighting shoulder to shoulder to liberate their homeland from the filth of Nazism, with the confidence that victory will be ours as in 1945,” Putin said in his wishes to the countries on Sunday. The former Soviet bloc as well as the breakaway regions of eastern Ukraine.
10:59 am: 60 missing in school bombing in eastern Ukraine
District Governor Sergio Gaidai said on Sunday that 60 people were missing after Saturday’s bombing of a school they had taken refuge in in eastern Ukraine’s Luhansk region.
And the village of “Belohorivka” was subjected to an air raid, where bombs hit the school, and unfortunately it was completely destroyed, according to what the governor said on his account on Telegram. He said, “There were a total of 90 people; 27 were rescued (…). It is likely that 60 people who were at the school died.”
10:20 am: Volodymyr Zelensky evokes the Nazi occupation on the occasion of May 8
In a speech commemorating the victory of May 8, 1945, the Ukrainian president compared the current war against Russia with the Nazi occupation.
“Decades after the end of World War II, darkness returned to Ukraine. (…) Evil is back. Again! In different uniforms, under different slogans, but with the same goal. A bloody reconstruction of Nazism was organized in Ukraine,” he said.
6 a.m.: Fighting continues in Kherson region
Fighting continues in the Kherson region – southern Ukraine – between the Russian and Ukrainian armies, while the city is under Russian control. Reporting from our special correspondent, Gulliver Cragg.
5:41 am: Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov says his soldiers are in control of Bubasna in the east
Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov, a close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin, announced on Telegram that “Chechen special forces fighters have captured most of Bubasna,” a town in eastern Ukraine. Reuters was unable to independently verify these statements.
Ukraine did not immediately respond to Ramzan Kadyrov’s comments, but Oleksiy Aristovich, an advisor to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, said on Saturday evening that heavy fighting was taking place in the city.
5:00 am: Ukraine in the G7 list with Volodymyr Zelensky
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is set to take part in a video conference of G7 leaders on Sunday to discuss the situation in his country, as the fate of another trapped in the strategic port of Mariupol remains uncertain.
“May 8th is a historic date that marks the end of World War II in Europe that caused terror, destruction and death in Europe,” German Chancellor Olaf Schulz’s spokeswoman said on Friday, adding that the war in Ukraine had led to “the cohesion of the G7” (… more important than ever.”
Germany, which holds the chair of the group this year, indicated that this third meeting since the beginning of the year will be devoted “specially to the situation in Ukraine.”
4 a.m.: In Azovstal, the last Ukrainian fighters are still fighting back despite enormous hardships
While all the women, children and elderly people were evacuated from the Azovstal steel plant on Saturday, Ukrainian fighters holed up at the plant – with dwindling ammunition and food and living in squalid conditions – are still struggling as the Russian army tightens its grip. On this last pocket of resistance in Mariupol (southeast).
For several weeks, Mariupol was almost entirely under Russian control. Only the huge Azovstal steel plants escaped from him, which the Russian army relentlessly bombed, as well as major attacks on the ground at the beginning of fierce battles.
12:10 am: London provides additional £1.3 billion in military aid to Ukraine
The United Kingdom has announced that it will provide 1.3 billion pounds (1.52 billion euros) in military aid to Ukraine. This new aid nearly doubles London’s previous spending commitments to Kyiv. The British government has already provided anti-tank missiles, air defense systems and other weapons to Ukraine.
With Agence France-Presse and Reuters