Russo-Ukraine War - 07 May 2022 - Day 73
On 24 February 2022, Ukraine was suddenly and deliberately attacked by land, naval and air forces of Russia, igniting the largest European war since the Great Patriotic War. The military buildup in preceeding months makes it obvious that the unprovoked and dastardly Russian attack was deliberately planned long in advance. During the intervening time, the Russian government had deliberately sought to deceive the world by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.
"To initiate a war of aggression... is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole." [Judgment of the International Military Tribunal]
Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a "special military operation" in Ukraine in response to the appeal of the leaders of the "Donbass republics" for help. That attack is a blatant violation of the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine. Putin stressed that Moscow's goal is the demilitarization and denazification of the country.
The seventy-third day of the heroic opposition of the Ukrainian people to the Russian military invasion continued. The Russians continued to conduct full-scale armed aggression against Ukraine. The Russians did not stop conducting offensive operations in the Eastern Operational Zone in order to establish full control over the territory of Donetsk and Luhansk regions and maintain the land corridor between these territories and the occupied Crimea.
The UK Ministry of Defence reported that at least one T-90M, Russia's most advanced tank, had been destroyed in fighting. The T-90M was introduced in 2016 and includes improved armor, an upgraded gun and enhanced satellite navigation systems. Approximately 100 T-90M tanks are currently in service amongst Russia's best equipped units, including those fighting in Ukraine. The system’s upgraded armor, designed to counter anti-tank weaponry, remains vulnerable if unsupported by other force elements. The conflict in Ukraine is taking a heavy toll on some of Russia’s most capable units and most advanced capabilities. It will take considerable time and expense for Russia to reconstitute its armed forces following this conflict. It will be particularly challenging to replace modernised and advanced equipment due to sanctions restricting Russia’s access to critical microelectronic components.
In the Volyn and Polissya directions, the Russians did not take active action. Certain units of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Belarus continued to perform tasks to cover the section of the Ukrainian-Belarusian border in Brest and Gomel regions. There is a threat of rocket-bomb attacks on the infrastructure of Ukraine from the territory of the Republic of Belarus.
In the Seversky direction, certain units of the armed forces of the Russian Federation continued to carry out tasks to cover the Ukrainian-Russian border in the Bryansk and Kursk regions. In the border areas of the Kursk region engineering equipment of positions proceeded. In the Slobozhansky direction, the Russians focused their main efforts on preventing further advance of Ukrainian troops in the direction of the state border of Ukraine. They strengthened the groups of troops of the 20th General Army and the 1st Panzer Army of the Western Military District at the expense of reserve units.
Russians carried out artillery shelling in the areas of Prudyanka and Slatine. As a result of the offensive of units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the Russians lost control over the settlement of Tsyrkuna. The Russians tried to launch an offensive in the direction of the settlement of Vernopil, was unsuccessful, suffered losses and withdrew. In the Donetsk direction, the Russians concentrated its main efforts on taking full control of Rubezhnoye and preparing for the offensive on the settlements of Lyman and Severodonetsk. They continued artillery shelling and rocket-bomb attacks with the use of operational and tactical aircraft in some areas. Also, the Russians tried to take control of the settlement of Alexandrovka, was unsuccessful.
In the Mariupol direction, the Russians continues to block units of the Defense Forces in the area of the Azovstal plant. With the support of artillery and tank fire conducts assault operations. All women, children and elderly civilians have been evacuated from the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol, Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said.
Ukraine has urged aid agency Doctors Without Borders (MSF) to evacuate its soldiers from their last holdout in the devastated port city of Mariupol. The ministry of reintegration of temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine wrote in a statement in English that it “calls on MSF to organise a mission to evacuate the defenders of Mariupol and Azovstal and provide medical care to the wounded people, whose human rights were violated by Russian Federation.” It added “Now, there is a lack of medicines, water and food, wounded soldiers are dying because of gangrene and sepsis”.
Zelenskyy said in a late night address that authorities would now focus on a second stage of the evacuation, aimed at rescuing the wounded and medics, and work on humanitarian corridors for all residents of Mariupol and surrounding settlements. He also said Kyiv was attempting to negotiate the evacuation of Ukrainian “defenders” from the steel mill but that it had been “extremely difficult.”
The Russians did not conduct active hostilities in the Novopavlovsk and Zaporizhzhya areas. With the support of the air force, they tried to conduct offensive operations in the direction of the settlement of Poltavka in the Zaporizhia region, suffered losses, and retreated to their former positions.
Units of the Defense Forces in the area of the settlement of Pologi, Zaporizhzhia region, successfully inflicted fire damage on the Russians, destroying some of their weapons and military equipment. The Russians personnel left their positions. In the South Bug direction, the Russians were defending and launching missile strikes on military and civilian infrastructure. The Russians did not conduct offensive operations in the Kryvyi Rih direction. The Russians shelled units of Ukrainian troops with mortars and artillery. The occupiers suffered significant losses in battles with units of the Defense Forces of Ukraine. Thus, more than 100 wounded servicemen of the airborne troops of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation were found in the village of Burchak.
Kyiv says it destroyed a Russian warship near the Black Sea’s Snake Island. Ukraine’s defence ministry said in a statement an armed drone had destroyed a Serna-class landing craft and a missile defence system at the small island under Russian control. It released grainy overhead footage on social media showing in black and white what appeared to be an explosion over a light craft with debris spilling outwards.
Russian President Vladimir Putin believes that he cannot afford to lose in Ukraine and is “doubling down” on the war, but does not show signs of planning to use tactical nuclear weapons, CIA director Bill Burns said. Despite the failure of Russian forces to capture Kyiv and their struggle to advance along the war’s main front lines in the southeastern Donbas region, Putin has not changed his view that his troops can defeat Ukraine’s forces, the CIA director said. Putin’s belief in Russia’s ability to wear down Ukrainian resistance probably has not been shaken despite key battlefield defeats, Burns told a conference. “I think he’s in a frame of mind in which he doesn’t believe he can afford to lose,” Burns said.
Russia’s defence ministry said it had destroyed a large stockpile of military equipment from the United States and European countries near the Bohodukhiv railway station in Ukraine’s Kharkiv region. The ministry said it had hit 18 Ukrainian military facilities overnight, including three ammunition depots in Dachne, near the port city of Odesa.
Russian missile troops and artillery hit 31 command posts on the territory of Ukraine during a special military operation. This was stated during the briefing by the official representative of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, Major General Igor Konashenkov. “Thirty-one command posts and 245 strongholds, areas of concentration of manpower and military equipment of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were hit by missile forces and artillery during the day ,” Konashenkov said.
The Aerospace Forces (VKS) of the Russian Federation hit more than 40 areas of concentration of manpower and military equipment of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (APU) with high-precision missiles. The Russian military with high-precision weapons drowned Ukrainian aircraft in the areas of three settlements. “High-precision long-range air and sea-based weapons at military airfields in the areas of the settlements of Artsyz, Odessa and Voznesensk destroyed aviation equipment of the Ukrainian Air Force, including unmanned aerial vehicles, as well as aviation weapons ,” Konashenkov said.
Operational-tactical and army aviation of Russia hit another 26 military facilities of Ukraine during the current day. The operational-tactical and army aviation of Russia shot down two Ukrainian aircraft - Su-24 and Su-27, as well as three Mi-8 helicopters with troops and two drones.
Deputy head of administration of the Kherson region Kirill Stremousov said : “ We intend to live as part of the Russian Federation and will resemble something close to Crimea in terms of the pace of development. The region will strive to become a subject of Russia. No one will force anything, but the primordially Russian lands must return to their historical channel of culture and values. If necessary, we are ready to address the issue of including the region into the Russian Federation. But already now we are fully cooperating and feel like one single whole with the regions of Russia. It was decided to return the historical coat of arms to the Kherson region - from the time the region was part of the Russian Empire."
Russia’s most senior lawmaker accused Washington of coordinating military operations in Ukraine, which he said amounted to direct US involvement in military action against Russia. “Washington is essentially coordinating and developing military operations, thereby directly participating in military actions against our country,” Vyacheslav Volodin wrote on his Telegram channel. Washington and European members of the transatlantic NATO alliance have supplied Kyiv with heavy weapons to help it resist a Russian offensive that has resulted in the occupation of parts of eastern and southern Ukraine but failed to take Kyiv.
The Americans are unlikely to be able to "cover over the direct participation of the United States in the killing of Russian servicemen" and the transfer of intelligence data about the positions of Russian troops and facilities to Ukraine. The head of Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin , wrote about this in his telegram channel . “It's too late to drink Borjomi, Mr. Burns. We are well acquainted with you, we met at the Spaso House (10 Spasopeskovsky per., Moscow, 119 002). Remember I hope? You are unlikely to be able to cover up the direct participation of the United States in the murder of Russian military personnel and the transfer of intelligence, including space communications and surveillance services, which were carried out by the orbital groups of the United States, including Starlink, and the European Union , ”Rogozin wrote, addressing CIA Director William Burns in absentia.
The Armed Forces of Ukraine are planning to strike Tochka-U missiles on the Lviv and Volyn regions on May 8 in order to subsequently accuse Russia of indiscriminate shelling. This was stated by the head of the National Center for Defense Control of Russia, Colonel-General Mikhail Mizintsev. “On May 8, during the Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation celebrated in Ukraine (established instead of the Victory Day of the Soviet people in the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945), in the western regions of the country, the Kiev regime plans to carry out yet another sophisticated provocation with the death of civilians for the subsequent accusation of the Russian Armed Forces of indiscriminate missile strikes ,” Mizintsev said.
Ukraine’s wheat production is likely to be down by at least a third from last year due to the Russian invasion, a data analysis firm that used satellite imagery said. Ukraine is a major producer and exporter of wheat, but the war has disrupted farming in the country. The French firm Kayrros said near-infrared and infrared imagery allows it to determine crop coverage and accurately predict wheat production. “Production this year is expected to be at least 35 percent lower than last year,” an analysis of the latest data showed, Kayrros said.
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