General situation overview
Ukraine stands, even though heavy fighting continued for the last 72 hours. Day 3 of the war kept the intensity, with more misguided missiles targeting civilian infrastructure, tank brigades movements, and street shootings – the horrible consequences of the Russian Federation’s attack. According to UA Defense Minister Olexii Reznikov, Russian troops changed their tactics: the rapid offensive by large columns has failed, so Russian saboteurs and landing operations are more common/ Russian troops are shelling residential neighborhoods, hospitals, and educational institutions. Attacks on the critical infrastructure continue increasing the threat of industrial man-made disasters.
Internationational community has mobilized in light of the fight escalation and the rapid increase of attacks on the civilian population with many wounded and killed. The procedure of banning Russia from the SWIFT system has been launched after the last of the opposing EU countries finally gave their support. The supply of defense arms has been announced by Germany, Belgium, Latvia, and the Netherlands.
The situation in Kyiv and the regions:
The situation in Kyiv was under control in the morning, thought shellings and bombings continued for the rest of the day. Regular air raid sirens warn people to stay in shelters. Over the night, the missiles were launched at a radioactive waste disposal site in Kyiv. Ohmadyt, Kyiv Children’s Specialized Hospital, was badly damaged in one of the shelling attacks. 1 child was killed and 4 people injured.
Chechen combatants were identified among the fight’s participants. Near the Gostomel, Kyiv region, Ukrainian forces overpowered Chechen Special Unit “Kadyrovites” on Saturday morning.
Russian troops proceed to target critical infrastructure, continuously raising the threat of an industrial man-made disaster. Vasylkiv, Kyiv Oblast, a town 33 kilometers outside Kyiv has been under heavy assault for the last couple of days. Around 1 am, 26th Feb, a Russian air missile hit an oil terminal there, causing a devastating fire. The town’s mayor confirmed that Russia has bombed an oil storage depot.
Attacks on civilians continue. Borodyanka, Kyiv region, a shell hit a private house, killing 3 people. Ohtyrka, Sumy region, is under regular shelling. There have been three missile strikes on the military unit there. Airstrikes also targeted residential areas – 70 wounded, one killed. The town remains under Ukrainian control, however, heavy fights continue.
Northern Ukraine. In Sumy, the attacks continue. Russian saboteurs lay out bombs around the city that look like innocent objects, gadgets, children’s toys, etc. On Saturday morning, heavy troops advanced in the direction of Sumy. Chernihiv was shelled with BM-21 “Grad” igniting the top floor of the apartment block. Radiation levels in the Chornobyl area remain increased, but because Russia controls that territory now, we cannot check and verify them.
Southern Ukraine. Kherson region. After heavy fights, Nova Kakhovka is under Russian control. Zaporizhzhia, another strategic city, is under attack. Russian troops are approaching the city of Energodar, where the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant is located. There are Russian Grads nearby.
Escalation in Eastern Ukraine. Kharkiv. Russian troops have blown up a natural gas pipeline in the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv. Russian Special Forces entered Kharkiv on Saturday morning. Donetsk and the Luhansk region remain under heavy attacks. In Volnovakha, 15 people were killed as a result of the Russian army shelling. Shellings continue from BM-21 “Grad” and artillery. There is extensive damage to residential buildings, including two apartment buildings. The villages of Bugas and Novognativka were significantly affected.
Map as of Saturday 26th, 2022 https://twitter.com/Da_Pacific/status/1497632818062831616
Digital war. International hackers group Anonymous successfully attacked a series of Russia’s own websites.
Corporate blockade. Twitter, YouTube place limitations on Russian users. Lufthansa suspends flights to Russia. The UK, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Finland closed their airspace for the Russian airline companies.
What needs to be done more:
- Hold rallies across your cities and call upon your countries’ authorities to suspend visa issuance to all Russian citizens and prohibit any Russian to enter the EU;
- Campain to launch EU accession negotiations procedure for Ukraine today.
UA media outlets to follow:
Glory to Ukraine!
Update prepared by representatives of Ukrainian NGOs and experts in human security and democracy, who are in cities all over Ukraine right now. NGOs: Institute for political and information research NGO, World of Communities, Kyiv educational center Tolerspace, U-Cycle NGO (Kyiv Cyclists Association). Experts: Sofia Oliynyk, Taras Tymchuk, Marianna Semenyshyn.