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War in Ukraine. Daily update. Day 147 [10.00 am, 20.07.2022 🇯🇵🇨🇿]

Prepared by Sofia Oliynyk and Maryana Zaviyska

Photo: Dombrovskis/Twitter 

Cities under attack.

Russian forces shelled the center of Kramatorsk in the Donetsk region once again. The invaders hit the central part of the city. Due to the strike, one person was killed and 10 people were injured. Four explosions were recorded in Sloviansk. Many residential buildings were damaged, and people were trapped under the rubble. The Sumy region was hit 9 times with 78 missiles within a day.

Cities under occupation.

As of yesterday, Ukrainian citizens are deprived of the right to own real estate in Mariupol by decision of the occupation authorities, says Petro Andriushchenko, advisor to the mayor of Mariupol. The released documents indicate that so-called Donetsk People’s Republic authorities consider all the real estate ownership documents registered before 19 February as null and void. Therefore, all remaining citizens have to re-register at the so-called local authorities to be granted certain accommodation.  


Prime Minister Shmyhal has announced the decision to redistribute UAH 500 million for the restoration and reconstruction of damaged infrastructure in the regions affected by the war. The funds will be allocated in the framework of a joint project with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development. The total amount allocated by the Government for the rehabilitation of the regions since the beginning of the war actually amounts to UAH 3 billion, said Shmyhal. 

Currently, the amount of damage to Ukraine’s economy from the damage and destruction of residential and non-residential buildings and infrastructure (in monetary terms) is at least $95.5 billion or more than UAH 2.6 trillion, according to a recent Kyiv School of Economics report. The largest share is caused by residential buildings — 38% or $36.6 billion. Almost 121 000 residential buildings have already been destroyed or damaged as a result of hostilities. The second place in terms of damage takes infrastructure — $31.3 billion. Since the beginning of Russia’s war against Ukraine, at least 388 enterprises, 18 civilian airports, 779 medical institutions, 1371 educational institutions, 690 kindergartens, 23 shopping centers, 28 oil depots, 105 200 private cars, 563 cultural and religious facilities have been damaged, destroyed or seized.

Meanwhile, Switzerland and Israel will assist with restoring the House of Officers in Vinnytsia which was heavily damaged by a Russian missile strike on July 14. The decision has come as a follow-up of the visit of more than 20 EU and Israel Ambassadors to Vinnytsia this week. 

Foreign policy.

The EU and Ukraine signed a memorandum on 1 billion euros of emergency macro-financial assistance. The amount will be paid at the end of July to support the government and people of Ukraine, Dombrovskis said. This is the first tranche of the total amount of macro-financial assistance in the amount of nine billion, which the Council of Europe adopted at the end of the June 24 summit.

The European Union will amend its sanctions on Wednesday by allowing the unfreezing of some funds of top Russian banks. The move may be required to ease bottlenecks in the global trade of food and fertilisers, as the draft document showed, Reuters reports. Under the revised sanctions, EU nations will be able to unfreeze previously blocked economic resources owned by top Russian lenders VTB, Sovcombank, Novikombank, Otkritie FC Bank, VEB, Promsvyazbank and Bank Rossiya, the document said. 

US President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden welcomed Ukraine’s first lady, Olena Zelenska, to the White House on Tuesday. The first ladies discussed how the US could provide help with mental health issues faced by women and children living through Russia’s war in Ukraine. On Wednesday, Zelenska will address Congress from the congressional auditorium in the Capitol Visitor Center.

Human rights.

Ukraine has returned another 45 bodies of the Ukrainian soldiers killed in the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine. The exchange followed Geneva conventions. 

The Russian occupiers are holding more than 10 000 residents of Mariupol in filtration centers, says Mariupol city mayor Vadim Boychenko. According to him, these are civil servants and municipal workers. The occupiers arrested and tortured them. According to Boychenko, one of the civil servants could not stand the torture and died in prison. 

Two more workers of Zaporizhzhya NPP were kidnapped by Russian forces in the temporarily occupied Energodar, the representatives of nuclear plant management: Serhiy Pykhtin, deputy head of the decontamination department for operation and management of radioactive waste, and Olena Ryabtseva, the master of the decontamination department. Currently, the location of the abducted is unknown, reads the statement. 

Food security.

Shelling of the wheat fields in the East and South of Ukraine continues. Two fires broke out during the day in wheat fields due to Russian shelling in the Kharkiv region, reports Kharkiv city council. One wheat field has an area of about 1 hectare, the second occupies an area of about 20 hectares. Pyrotechnics of the State Emergency Service also eliminated 13 unexploded enemy ammunition.

Personnel changes.

Selection committee for the election of the head of the Specialized Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office (SAPO) has finally approved the results of the competition. According to the results, National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU) detective Oleksandr Klymenko has been selected as the winner in the competition for the SAPO head. The documents are submitted for approval to the Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO). However, considering the personnel rotation at the PGO and appointment of the acting Prosecutor General, the signing of the approval of the appointment remains up in the air. 

The Parliament of Ukraine supported the dismissal of Chief of Security Services of Ukraine Ivan Bakanov and Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova. Oleksii Symonenko, deputy of the Prosecutor General, will act as the Prosecutor General of Ukraine. The duties of the head of the SBU will be temporarily performed by the first deputy head of the department Vasyl Malyuk.

Also, the Parliament supported the appointment of Oksana Zholnovych, who’s been previously in charge of the Department social policy and health care at the Office of the President, as a Minister of Social Policies of Ukraine. 

Arms oversight.

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine established the Temporary Special Commission on monitoring the receipt and usage of international material and technical assistance during martial law, namely military aid. The Commision is in charge of the preparation of legislative initiatives regarding the model of parliamentary control over material and technical assistance during martial law, namely military aid. Also it is responsible for holding parliamentary hearings regarding cases of violation of the principles of legality, justice and transparency of the use of such assistance.

Energy security.

The Security Service of Ukraine has collected evidence that the Russian forces, which forcibly seized the facilities of Chornobyl NPP and controlled them in the period from February 24 to March 31, 2022, committed an act of nuclear terrorism. By turning this facility into its temporary military base, the Russian Federation flagrantly violated the Geneva Convention, which expressly forbids attacks on nuclear facilities in conditions of armed conflict. The Security Service of Ukraine has documented the following evidence: presence of a large amount of heavy military equipment, weapons and more than 1000 soldiers of the Russian Federation were constantly present in the territory of the exclusion zone. The occupiers equipped 5 fire points on the territory of the storage facility, where work is carried out with the spent materials of plutonium-239 reactors. The  territory of the exclusion zone was mined with more than 100 mines and 3 explosions were discovered. At the beginning of March, the occupiers damaged the communication towers, which caused the radiation situation monitoring system to malfunction. On March 9, the enterprise was almost completely cut off, which practically paralyzed the operation of all control and security systems. In particular, the spent nuclear fuel cooling system was turned off;

Ukraine officially joined the International Energy Agency as an Association country, with the signing of a joint declaration by Ukraine’s Minister of Energy German Galushchenko and IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol. The Joint Declaration states that Ukraine and the IEA intend to work together to develop policy and build capacity in a wide range of energy related fields, including market analysis, energy system reconstruction, energy security, efficiency, accelerated energy transitions, hydrogen and biomethane, and energy data and statistics. The specific initiatives are to be agreed upon in two-year joint work programmes.

The Russian invaders at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant neglect the rules and threaten nuclear safety, reports Energoatom. On July 18, 2022, the Russian invaders that occupied ZNPP forcibly took away passes from two plant employees and used them to enter the radiation zone of ZNPP Unit 2. This violated all the established norms and procedures for passing and staying in this zone. There was neither special clothing nor prescribed preparatory procedures for staying in it, reads the statement.

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