Prepared by Sofia Oliynyk and Maryana Zaviyska
Photo: Andrei Rafael
Cities under attack.
Russia continues cross-border shelling, as Sumy is again under attack. 6 mortar attacks were launched at the Velykopysarivska community. Early Sunday morning, Russia’s navy fired cruise missiles at the Lviv region. Four missiles fully destroyed the military infrastructure facility. An evacuation vehicle with 10 people, including 4 children, from Severodonetsk, got under the Russian shelling. Russian occupation forces shelled a hospital in Sievierodonetsk on 14 May, wounding 9 civilians. 10 % of the Luhansk region remains under Ukraine’s control. The number has decreased by 20% from the previous 30% as of the beginning of March. The key battles are currently focusing near Severodonetsk, Lysychansk, Rubizhne. In Kharkiv region 4 people were injured in the shelling of the two residential districts. Heavy fighting continues in the Izium direction. In the Donetsk region, battles continue all across the frontline. The Russian forces attempted to destroy industrial facilities by shelling at the Phenolic Plant in New York, on Monday – once again at the Avdiivka Coke Plant. In the Kherson region, the situation remains critical, as the occupiers continue to shell the settlements and positions of the Armed Forces in the territories controlled by Ukraine. Locals report significant damage and destroyed homes, schools, kindergartens, destroyed and mined road infrastructure. In the morning in Mykolaiv a series of strong explosions appeared due to the rocket strikes and MLRS strikes on residential quarters of the city. According to preliminary information, a car and a furniture store caught fire as a result of the shelling, one person was injured
Mariupol is under the threat of a large-scale epidemic that could kill thousands of the remaining city residents. The city remains cut off from drinking water, has damaged sewage systems and a large number of bodies remain under the rubble of houses. There is a danger that the sewage will be in the sea and on the streets of the city. Considering the number of bodies and the natural consequences of decomposition during the warm period, the outburst of the epidemic is very likely.
Ukraine’s defense of Azovstal is still tying down Russian combat troops and inflicting casualties. Russian forces allegedly used thermite-based incendiary munitions during the attack at the Azovstal steel plant. Meanwhile, about 600 wounded soldiers remain at Azovstal steel plant. Most of them are severely wounded, remaining in unsanitary conditions, without medicine, water and food at the plant surrounded by the Russians. Ground, air and heavy artillery assaults continue non-stop. Ukrainian officials are attempting a negotiated evacuation of medical people and injured service members, however, Putin does not give the order for the evacuation.
The Russian military, after the call of the ‘Kalush Orchestra’ to help the defenders of ‘Azovstal’ at Eurovision song contest, wrote on the bombs ‘Help Mariupol, Help Azovstal’, ‘for Azovstal, just like you asked’ and launched them on Mariupol.
A US Senate delegation led by the leader of the Republican minority in the upper house of Congress Mitchell McConnell visited Kyiv to meet with President Zelenskyi. Senator McConnell underlined the Ukraine’s needs in the war – ‘Ukraine is not asking anybody else to fight their fight. They only ask for the tools they need for self-defense.’ The visit of the Republican delegation continues a series of the US high-level visits to Ukraine. Meanwhile in Washington, a new round of funding for Ukraine’s battle against the Russian invasion is held up in the Senate due to Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul objection.
The G7 Foreign Ministers concluded this weekend their meeting with a joint statement calling on Russia to immediately withdraw all of its troops from Ukraine and declaring readiness to provide Ukraine with as many weapons to defend its territory and sovereignty as necessary – ‘We will never recognize the borders that Russia is trying to change through military aggression, and we will continue our participation in supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, including Crimea’. The G7 committed also to further coordinated restrictive measures on Russia‘s economy and financial system, expediting their efforts to reduce and end reliance on Russian energy supplies as quickly as possible and combatting disinformation.
On Sunday, the President of Finland announced a formal decision about Finland applying for NATO membership. The Swedish government intends to formally apply for NATO membership on May 17, according to Svenska Dagbladet. Officials are also expected to announce their endorsement of NATO’s course. However, Turkey expressed their concerns about both countries joining the NATO, especially as it puts In their list of demands, Turkey requested Sweden and Finland to ‘stop supporting terrorist groups in their countries, provide clear security guarantees and lift export bans on Turkey as they seek membership in NATO.
New President of Hungary, Katalin Novak, during the inauguration ceremony, has condemned Putin’s aggression and supported Ukraine’s accession to the EU. The statement comes after weeks of tensions between Hungary and the EU about further sanctions against Russia, as well as after the rejection of transit or sending of the weapons to Ukraine.
The Embassy of India will resume its work in Kyiv on May 17th
Cost of war.
At the moment the biggest infrastructure damages have been encountered in Mariupol ($ 9 947 mln), Kharkiv ($7 072 mln) and Chernihiv ($4 211 mln). $449 million is the preliminary of the damages inflicted by Russian troops in the city of Bucha (Kyiv region). 1354 buildings were damaged by the Russian military, 1230 of which were residential buildings. Further assessments are underway and this number might change.
Overall, since the beginning of Russia’s war against Ukraine, the report of Kyiv School of Economics indicates at least 208 factories and enterprises, 508 healthcare institutions, 562 kindergartens, 156 warehouses, 992 educational institutions, 295 bridges and bridge crossings, 102 religious buildings, 83 administrative buildings, 27 oil depots, and 12 civilian airports and have been damaged, destroyed or seized.
Minister of Infrastructure Kubrakov reported on the scale of destruction of infrastructure in Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian war in Ukraine. Ukraine lost 6.3 thousand km of main tracks, 23,573 km of roads suffered damages due to the Russian attacks, as well as 289 road and 41 railway bridges were destroyed. Overall around 23% of the railway network has been either damaged or destroyed.
Proves of war.
The Washington Post created a database of 231 of the publicly available videos and verified by the forensics team. The database includes videos posted by citizens, public officials, and soldiers daily showing the dead bodies in neighborhoods, the trails of missiles streaking through the skies, and the smoldering ruins of entire towns. The website indicates that the videos have been uploaded in raw format and graphic content is clearly marked, as well as geographically tagged, so it can be searched by location.
The Ministry of Culture and Information of Ukraine released a new report of the damages of the cultural infrastructure due to the Russian war. Russian crimes against objects of cultural heritage have been recorded in 13 regions of Ukraine and Kyiv. The cultural heritage of Kharkiv has currently received the most damage – 90 episodes have been recorded. The Ministry of Culture and Information Policy is aware of the damage or destruction of 114 religious buildings by the Russian troops, 42 of which are listed as historical, architectural and urban monuments.
Ukrainian band, Kalush Orchestra, wins Eurovision song contest in Turin, Italy. The song named Stefania, devoted to the mother of the lead singers, gained a different meeting due to the war outbreak – referring to the ‘mother Ukraine’. In a newly released video to the song, the band shows the damages caused by the war in Bucha, Irpin, and Bilogordka. The music video also shows the different roles Ukrainian women are playing in defending the country reflecting a cultural tradition of feminist independence and emansipation.
Having won the song contest, Ukraine is entitled to host the song competition next year in Ukraine. Russia and Belarus were not allowed to participate in this year’s competition due to their role in Russia’s war in Ukraine. During the live stream, Kalush Orchestra band, called ‘Help Ukraine, Mariupol, help Azovstal! Right now!’.
- Euromaidan SOS: honest answers to the most common questions about AZOV in the West – read about the Azov Battalion in the article of ‘Euromaidan SOS’ human rights NGO.
- Singing, dancing and defending their country: meet Ukraine’s Eurovision entry | The Economist
- When Reality Bites – Lennart Meri Conference – Matti Maasikas, Ambassador, EU Delegation to Ukraine
- Sanctions Shed Light on Putin’s Private Life – The New York Times (nytimes.com)
- Poisoned legacy: why the future of power can’t be nuclear | Serhii Plokhy | The Guardian – ‘In order for this method of producing electricity to be safe, everything else in society has to be functioning perfectly. Warfare, economic collapse, climate change itself – all of these increasingly real risks make nuclear sites potentially perilous places. Even without them, the dangers of atomic fission remain, and we must ask ourselves: are they really worth the cost?’
- The Commissioner for Human Rights of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Lyudmila Denisova reports that during the 80 days of the full-scale war, the Russian occupiers destroyed 616 medical facilities, 101 of them completely. According to the Minister of Health of Ukraine Viktor Lyashko, 32 billion hryvnias are needed to restore them.
- Almost 46,000 people entered the country over the past 24 hours, and more than 42,000 of them were Ukrainians. Since 9 May, the flow of people entering Ukraine across its western border has exceeded the flow of people leaving for the fifth day in a row. The total net inflow to Ukraine during these days amounted to 31,000 people.According to the State Border Guard Service, 1.699 million people have entered Ukraine since February 28.
- General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine announced the total estimated losses of the Russian military as of 10 a.m., May 16, 2022: personnel – around 27 700, tanks ‒ 1228, APV ‒ 2974, artillery systems – 557, MLRS – 195, anti-aircraft warfare systems – 89, fixed-wing aircraft – 200, helicopters – 165, soft-skinned vehicles and fuel tankers – 2101, boats and light speed boats – 13, operational-tactical level UAV – 411, special equipment – 42, cruise missiles – 97. Also, follow the interactive counter of Russian losses.
Every action counts, no contribution is too small!
- Support NGO “Zgraya” (Kyiv) is a group of volunteers who worked with the military in the East of Ukraine in 2014-2015. They have resumed their work helping civilians and hospitals with medicine and equipment, the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the territorial defense with equipment, machinery, medicine and food. Find out more and support them.
- Share this up-to-date information about the situation in Ukraine, either on social media, with local media or by spreading around this brief update.
- Subscribe to our daily updates on Twitter and our website.
- You can support our project with donations via PayPal. More information here.
Thank you for supporting Ukraine! Slava Ukraini! Glory to Ukraine!