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Russo-Ukraine War - 11 May 2022 - Day 76

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A number of claims and counterclaims are being made on the Ukraine-Russia conflict on the ground and online. While GlobalSecurity.org takes utmost care to accurately report this news story, we cannot independently verify the authenticity of all statements, photos and videos.

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-sevenths day of the heroic resistance of the Ukrainian people to a Russian military invasion continues. Russia continued to conduct full-scale armed aggression against Ukraine.

Russia will not take actions that could cause NATO to be directly involved in events in Ukraine, Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin said at a House committee hearing. According to him, no one wants to see a conflict between Russia and the North Atlantic alliance. “In my opinion, Russia does not want to involve NATO ,” Austin said. According to Austin, the Russian leadership does not want to enter into such a conflict. “It would very quickly escalate into a different type of collision that no one wants to see ,” Austin said. “If Russia decides to attack a NATO member country, it will change the game. According to the obligation under Article 5, NATO will most likely respond in some form within the framework of the coalition , ”added the head of the US military department.

Ukraine offered Russia to exchange wounded soldiers from "Azovstal" for prisoners of war of the Russian Federation. Moscow has not yet responded to the proposal, Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said. Lyudmyla Denisova, Ukraine's human rights ombudswoman, appealed to the UN and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) to help her country evacuate wounded fighters who remain still holed up at the Azovstal steel plant in the besieged city.

The wives of two Ukrainian soldiers who are still trapped in the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol met with Pope Francis at the Vatican. The women, Kateryna Prokopenko and Yuliia Fedusiuk, spoke with Francis at the end of his public audience in St. Peter's Square. "We hope that this meeting will just give us the chance to save their lives," Fedosiuk told reporters afterwards. "Our soldiers are waiting to be evacuated to a third country, to lay down their arms in case of evacuation," she said. The women mentioned that Switzerland or Turkey might be third-country options but provided no further details. The pope reportedly told the women he would do everything possible and that he would pray for them.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the war could have likely been prevented if Kyiv had been a member of the transatlantic military alliance NATO beforehand. "If Ukraine had been part of NATO before the war, there would have been no war," Zelenskyy said in a video call with students at the French University Sciences Po. Zelenskyy also told the students that he wanted to restore Ukraine's territory before an end of the conflict with Russia, but that he was still open to dialogue. "Once we recoup all that is ours, we will finish this," he said.

The UK Ministry of Defence reported fighting continued at Zmiinyi Island, also known as Snake Island, with Russia repeatedly trying to reinforce its exposed garrison located there. Ukraine successfully struck Russian air defences and resupply vessels with Bayraktar drones. The statement by the official representative of the Russian Ministry of Defense, Major General Igor Konashenkov , that Ukrainian troops lost 14 planes and helicopters, 30 drones and over 50 personnel in an attempt to capture Zmeiny Island, caused discussion in the Internet community. Many users came to the conclusion that the failed attempt to capture Zmiinyi Island using so many pieces of equipment suggests that the Ukrainian Armed Forces are unable to carry out full-fledged offensive operations.

The UK Ministry of Defence reported Russia’s resupply vessels have minimum protection in the western Black Sea, following the Russian Navy’s retreat to Crimea after the loss of the Moskva. Russia’s current efforts to augment its forces on Zmiinyi Island offer Ukraine more opportunities to engage Russian troops and attrit materiel. If Russia consolidates its position on Zmiinyi Island with strategic air defence and coastal defence cruise missiles, they could dominate the north-western Black Sea.

Russian forces did not stop conducting offensive operations in the Eastern Operational Zone. The greatest activity of the occupiers is further observed in Slobozhansky and Donetsk directions. In the Volyn and Polissya directions, Russian forces did not take active action. Measures of engineering equipment of defence positions along the state border in Brest and Gomel oblasts are underway. Meetings involving conscripts were being held in Brest and Grodno oblasts. The threat of missile and air strikes from the territory of the republic of belarus on the objects of Ukraine remains.

In the Siversky direction, the Russians continued to provide enhanced protection of the Ukrainian-Russian border in the Bryansk and Kursk regions. In order to prevent the regrouping of Ukrainian troops and their transfer to other areas, units of the Armed Forces of russian federation continue to conduct demonstrations. In the regions bordering Ukraine, the Russians were increasing the air defence system.

Russians did not carry out offensive operations in the Kharkiv direction. The occupying forces moved to the defence in order to slow down the pace of the offensive of Ukrainian troops. In the course of successful actions of units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the settlement of Pytomnyk of Kharkiv region was liberated.

In the Slovyansk direction, the main efforts of Russian forces were focused on creating conditions for the resumption of the offensive. Russian forces units continued to replenish supplies of material and technical means in order to increase offensive capabilities. In the vast majority of the temporarily occupied territories of the Kharkiv region, in order to prevent the transfer of information about the movement of Russian troops, the occupiers are suppressing the cellular network. Locals in many settlements remain without electricity and water. Entry into the territory controlled by Ukraine by the Russian occupiers is prohibited.

In the Donetsk direction, the main efforts of Russian forces are focused on gaining full control over the city of Rubizhne and conducting an offensive in the direction of the village of Lyman. Russian forces were trying to hold positions on the right bank of the Siversky Donets River. They also continued preparations for the offensive in the areas of Kurakhove and Novopavlivka. Russian forces continues to fire on the positions of Ukrainian troops. Increased the intensity of air reconnaissance with the use of UAVs.

In the Bakhmut direction, in order to prepare for the offensive, Russian occupiers continued artillery shelling of the positions of Ukrainian troops in the areas of the settlements of Svitlodarsk and Troyitske. Russian forces carried out assault operations in the directions of Orikhove and Toshkivka, but were unsuccessful.

In Mariupol, the main efforts of Russian forces are focused on blocking and trying to destroy Ukrainian units in the area of the Azovstal plant. Russian forces continued to launch artillery and air strikes.

In the Kryvyi Rih and Mykolayiv areas, Russian forces did not conduct active hostilities, firing at Ukrainian units with artillery and mortars. Conducted engineering equipment of advanced positions. In the Black Sea and Azov sea zones, Russian naval groups performed the task of isolating combat areas and conducting reconnaissance.

Russians were launching missile strikes on important infrastructure in Ukraine, providing support to ground forces in the coastal area and blocking civilian shipping. Russian forces continued to suffer losses. The Russian were disorganized and demoralized. According to available information, servicemen of certain units of the armed forces of the Russian Federation performing tasks on the territory of Ukraine were informed about the impossibility of rotating until the end of the so-called "special operation".

Ukraine’s prosecutor general said a Russian soldier will stand trial for committing an alleged war crime in Ukraine for the first time since the war began. Iryna Venediktova said that the man, identified as Vadim Shysimarin, is accused of killing an unarmed civilian in Ukraine’s northeastern Sumy region on February 28, four days after Moscow launched its offensive. The 21-year-old is currently being held in custody. If convicted, he faces between 10 years to life in prison, Venediktova said.

The US House of Representatives agreed to a fresh $40 billion (nearly €38 billion) in assistance for Ukraine. The money will include funds for defense, humanitarian and economic needs in Ukraine. No House Democrats voted against the measure, but dozens of Republican members opposed the bill.

The Bundeswehr stated "Training of the Ukrainian soldiers on the Panzerhaubitze 2000 - one of the most modern artillery systems - started today. The important thing is that it is a clear sign of Ukrainian solidarity. However, Germany does not become a party to the war through training or delivery." The training is taking place at the Bundeswehr artillery school in Idar-Oberstein, Rheinland-Pfalz, Germany. Germany and the Netherlands are going to hand over a total of 12 self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine, seven of them being from Germany. Training is expected to last around 40 days.

Alexander Müller who sits on the German Bundestag or parliament's defense committee with the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP), part of Chancellor Scholz's governing coalition, told DW that training Ukrainian forces on German soil does not make Germany a party to the conflict. "Howitzers are the system that Ukraine said had the highest priority when they came to us," Müller said. He added, "International law is clear; we are not part of this war. And we are not taking part in this war by educating Ukrainian soldiers in Germany." Müller noted "Legally, it is clear. But, you know, Vladimir Putin does not look at international law. He makes his own decisions".

Milos Zeman, the Czech President once known for his friendly attitude toward Russia and the Kremlin, approved a request made by 103 Czechs to join Ukraine's armed forces in the country's struggle to repel Russia's invasion. Under Czech law, Czechs are barred from military service for foreign armies. Those who violate the law can face a prison sentence of up to five years. Approximately 400 Czechs had applied for an exemption to the ban on military service for foreign armies, the Czech Ministry of Defense said. Most of the requests had yet to be processed. Prime Minister Petr Fiala still has to co-sign approval, but he has said he would sign all requests that have been approved by Czech authorities.

Deliveries of Russian gas transit via the Sokhranivka transit point in Ukraine's eastern Luhansk for May 11 fell to zero, data from Ukrainian gas pipeline operator GTSOU showed. Ukraine shut off some Russian gas flows in the country at 7 a.m. local time. Ukraine's gas operator announced it would redirect gas from the Sokhranivka transit point, which is located in Russian-occupied Ukrainian territory. The gas will thus be redirected to another transit point in an area still under control of the Ukrainian government. Ukraine's gas operator said some 32.6 million cubic meters of gas will be halted by the decision. "The company repeatedly informed Gazprom about gas transit threats due to the actions of the Russian-controlled occupation forces and stressed stopping interference in the operation of the facilities, but these appeals were ignored," the operator said.

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi said that the German authorities had already paid for Russian gas supplies under the scheme proposed by Moscow. " No one has ever said whether the ruble payments violate the sanctions, this is such a gray area. The largest gas importer - Germany - has already paid in rubles, and most importers have opened accounts in rubles," said the Italian prime minister during a speech at a press conference for journalists during a visit to the United States. The German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, citing Klaus-Dieter Maubach, the head of the board of Uniper, wrote that the company does not exclude the use of a scheme in which payment for Russian gas will be made in euros, and then converted into rubles through Gazprombank.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said he is deeply concerned about hunger becoming widespread as the war in Ukraine threatens food security in different parts of the world. The Russian invasion has disrupted shipping in the Black Sea, a major route for grains and other commodities, throttling exports from Ukraine and Russia. “I have to say that I am deeply concerned, namely with the risks of hunger becoming widespread in different parts of the world because of the dramatic food security situation we are facing because of the war in Ukraine,” Guterres said.

The United States is able to replace Ukrainian grain in the world food market, US President Joe Biden said on during a visit to a farm in Illinois. “Folks, we can make sure that American agricultural exports fill the gap in Ukrainian supplies. In fact, during the first year of my presidency, American agricultural exports broke all past records - $ 177 billion , ”Biden said. He also said that without Ukrainian wheat, “many people in Africa will die of starvation,” adding that the armed conflict does not allow Ukrainian farmers to work.

TV presenter Vladimir Solovyov calls on Sverdlovsk Governor Yevgeny Kuyvashev to publicly determine his attitude towards Russia's special operation to protect Donbass and to demilitarize and denazify Ukraine. He stated this live on his TV show. “So you support a special operation, citizens in the power of the Sverdlovsk province, or are you shy? Please give a direct answer”. The TV presenter added that in connection with the dismissal of the heads of five regions, this would be useful for the head of the Sverdlovsk region. He also expects answers from those who criticized him after the words about Yekaterinburg. “You have in Yekaterinburg the center of such a vile liberota, which has given birth to many scum, now hiding abroad, from Volkov to various neo-Nazis. Some people have such rubbish in their heads that they just clean and clean, ”he said in an interview with the Plenipotentiary of the Ural Federal District Vladimir Yakushev.

The governor of the Sverdlovsk region, Yevgeny Kuyvashev, reacted to the statement of TV presenter Vladimir Solovyov. “In the Urals, people who watch their language are very much loved and appreciated, so I wish you to watch your language,” the head of the Russian region said in a video posted on Telegram. He stressed that he was proud of Yekaterinburg and its inhabitants. These are free, courageous, intelligent people who can think critically, the official noted. According to him, Yekaterinburg residents are waiting for the arrival of a journalist to voice their position. “And after Solovyov’s statements, I am sure that the number of listeners to his lectures in Yekaterinburg will greatly decrease. And the townspeople will be waiting for him to answer the accusations, ”concluded Kuyvashev.

Werner Hoyer, president of the European Investment Bank, told the Reuters news agency that he supports a multi-trillion-Euro Marshall Plan-style recovery program for post-war Ukraine. Under the post-World War II American recovery plan for Europe, the USS provided massive economic and technical assistance over four years' worth roughly the equivalent of $200 billion in today's currency. "What will it cost to rebuild, reconstruct Ukraine?" Hoyer asked. "One thing is quite clear to me: We are not talking about millions but trillions," he added.

More than 560 soldiers from Ukraine’s National Guard, a force that includes the Azov regiment currently holed up in Mariupol’s steelworks, have been killed since the war with Russia began, its leader said. Besides the 561 dead, an additional 1,697 troops had been wounded since the war started, National Guard chief Oleksiy Nadtochy said.

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Page last modified: 17-10-2022 19:16:44 ZULU