War in Ukraine. Daily update. Day 113 [10.00 am, 16.06.2022 🇷🇸🇯🇵🇦🇪🇨🇿]

Prepared by Sofia Oliynyk and Maryana Zaviyska 

Foreign policy.  The third meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group took place in Brussels on Wednesday. Representatives from more than 50 nations pledged to get more military capabilities into the hands of Ukrainian forces battling Russian invaders, said Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III. The meeting was convened at the time when “Ukraine is facing a pivotal moment on the battlefield” in the nearly four-month war with Russia, therefore more support is needed. As an outcome of the meeting US President Joe Biden announced a new $1 billion military aid package to Ukraine, including artillery, coastal defense systems, artillery ammunition, and MLRS. Also, the United States will provide $225 million in humanitarian aid to Ukraine. Germany promised to provide Ukraine with three Mars MLRS, Slovakia with Mi-17 helicopters, and Canada, Poland and the Netherlands – with artillery. This time, Georgia and Moldova joined the meeting as well. 

Jens Stoltenberg announced that ‘NATO Allies will agree to a comprehensive assistance package for Ukraine. Helping Ukraine for the longer-term, to transition from Soviet-era equipment to modern NATO equipment, and to improve interoperability with NATO’.

Prime Ministers of Albania and Montenegro visited Ukraine to meet with President Zelenskyi. The prime ministers of two western Balkan states arrived in Kyiv on Wednesday to show solidarity with Ukraine in its quest to become a member of the European Union. Before meeting with Zelenskyi, Dritan Abazovic of Montenegro and Edi Rama of Albania visited the Kyiv suburbs of Borodyanka and Irpin to witness the destruction brought by Russian soldiers.

The United States will support the unification of Ukraine, Great Britain, Poland and the Baltic states into one union if this strengthens the defense potential “Washington is interested in strengthening the capabilities of the Alliance, in particular on the eastern flank, so the United States is open to initiatives that will help build capacity,” said Julianne Smith, US Permanent Representative to NATO.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, French President Emmanuel Macron and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi are on their way to Kyiv. The three officials are expected to meet with President Zelenskyi ahead of the European Commission announcing its recommendations regarding Ukraine’s status in the EU. It is expected that the President will call his visitors to send more arms to help his hard-pressed army withstand the Russian invaders. 

Romanian President Klaus Iohannis also arrived in Kyiv today. 

Czech Republic unveiled priorities for its EU Council presidency. The priority will go to cutting dependency on Russian fossil fuels, raising funds for Ukraine’s post-war reconstruction and strengthening the disrupted supply chains

President Zelenskyi accepted the invitation to take part in the G7 Summit (26-28 June) and in the NATO Summit, which will be taking place in Madrid on 29-30 June.

Cities under attack. Ukraine did not agree to the Russian ultimatum to surrender Severodonetsk, Luhansk region as the battles are raging in the city. The decision has been taken along with the United States announcement of more weapons for Kyiv. Previously, Russia was offering for civilians to leave via the humanitarian corridor but to Russia-controlled territories and not to Ukraine. Currently, around 500 people are still sheltering at the Azot chemical plant. Meanwhile, Valeriy Zaluzhny, commander-in-chief of the Ukraine’s Armed Forces, said that Russia had concentrated its main strike forces in the north of Luhansk region, with the main goal to take over Severodonetsk. According to him, Russians were trying to attack simultaneously in nine directions.

Situation in the Donetsk region remains unchanged – tension and shelling all along the frontline. A Russian rocket hit the wagon with humanitarian aid from the World Central Kitchen, which was supposed to feed Mariupol residents in ‘YaMariupol’ centers. In the Sumy region, the Russian missiles hit the Sadivska community at night, killing four people and injuring at least six. During the day, Russian forces shelled the border territories with mortars and artillery. Already in the morning, Russian forces have launched a missile strike on the Krasnopilska community. In the Mykolaiv region, Russian forces targeted the residential quarter of Mykolaiv from MLRS, preliminary Hurricane systems, aimed at the four-storeyed apartment house. Communities across the border are under the shelling. 

Resistance. Pro-Ukrainian movement in the occupied territories undermines Russians’ plans for a smooth  implementation of their occupation agenda. The Ukrainian Resistance Center reported that unidentified Ukrainian partisans targeted employees of the Russian Emergency Ministry in Mariupol on June 9 and 11. Also, Russian occupation authorities are unable to open schools in occupied Berdyansk due to resistance from Ukrainian teachers, who are refusing to teach under Russian curriculum. Such pro-Ukrainian action will likely continue to disrupt Russian efforts to consolidate full-scale administrative control of occupied areas and the Russian annexation agenda, reports the Institute of War Studies. 

Human rights. A food security crisis stoked by the Ukraine war is set to push more people to flee their homes in poorer countries, driving record levels of global displacement even higher, reports Reuters referring to UNHCR report. Russian invasion of Ukraine, causing the fastest and one of the largest forced displacement crises since World War II, and other emergencies, from Africa to Afghanistan and beyond, pushed the figure over the dramatic milestone of 100 million displaced people already, says the report.

Families of Azovstal defenders call on the Red Cross and international media to visit the prison in Olenivka. The Russians are holding more than 2500 military captives there.

War crimes prosecution. The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Karim Khan visited Kharkiv on Tuesday as its investigations and Ukraine’s prosecutions of Russian war crimes continue. It is the third visit of the ICC prosecutor to Ukraine. Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova and ICC Prosecutor inspected the sites of Russia’s war crimes in Kharkiv and discussed joint steps in the strategy of prosecution and justice. After the release of the Amnesty International report on the Russian indiscriminate attacks on Kharkiv, the Prosecutor visited the Kharkiv’s most affected district, Pivnichna Saltivka, as well as the Shevchenkivskyi district, where nine were killed and 17 injured on May 26.

The commission, created by the UN’s Geneva-based Human Rights Council (UNHRC), is set to investigate alleged abuses of human rights and international humanitarian law during the Russian invasion launched on February 24. However, the Commission reports that it had not yet managed to establish any contact with Russia on this issue.

Environmental security. Ukraine is collecting evidence of the ecocides committed by Russian forces in Ukraine since the start of the full-scale invasion. As part of a special task force, coordinated by the Ecological Inspectorate of Ukraine, a state body, around 100 people are collecting evidence of environmental damage caused by Russia. Ruslan Strelets, Minister of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine, in the interview, said Ukraine is collaborating with the law firms to build up the case and calls for the citizens to submit and document the ecological crimes. As of June 1, Ukraine recorded 257 crimes against the environment committed by Russia. 

Food security. The invaders in Melitopol fully robbed two main enterprises, “Melitopol Cherry” and the State Research Institute, which is engaged in the cultivation of cherries, said the mayor Fedorov. Melitopol, Zaporizhzhia region, is known in Ukraine and abroad as a region where the best varieties of sweet cherries were grown on an industrial scale. Melitopol cherry has become a brand.

The so-called head of the Crimean occupation administration, Serhii Aksyonov, has said that the Russians are exporting grain stolen in the occupied territories of Ukraine via Sevastopol. He indicated the grain from the ‘liberated’ territories is in transit to the Republic of Crimea, then goes to Sevastopol for sale. 

Watchlist. Ukraine. Returning Its Own History. The large-scale and state-of-the-art historical research by Akim Galimov tells us about the history of Ukraine and Russia’s numerous attempts to manipulate historical facts. What was the Kremlin’s goal? Why was it stealing artifacts and historical heroes? How were entire eras erased from school books? This film can explain the underlying causes of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, which, in fact, are hidden in the darkness of centuries.

Reading corner. 


  • As of June, 13,  2 479 398 people returned back to Ukraine since 28 February 2022, says UNHCR. 
  • General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine announced the total estimated losses of the Russian military as of 10 a.m., June 16, 2022: personnel – around 32 950, tanks ‒ 1449, APV ‒ 3545, artillery systems – 729, MLRS – 233, anti-aircraft warfare systems – 97, fixed-wing aircraft – 213, helicopters – 179, operational-tactical level UAV – 591, cruise missiles – 129, boats and light speed boats – 13, soft-skinned vehicles and fuel tankers – 2494, special equipment – 55. 

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