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Russo-Ukraine War - 01 June 2022 - Day 97

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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. 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 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]

The heroic opposition of the Ukrainian people to the Russian military invasion continues. The UK Ministry of Defence reported that Russian ground operations remain tightly focused, with the weight of fire power concentrated within a small sector of Luhansk Oblast. Over 30-31 May, fighting intensified in the streets of Sieverodonetsk, with Russian forces pushing closer to the town center.

Over half of the town is likely now occupied by Russian forces, including Chechen fighters. Beyond the Donbas, Russia continues to conduct long-range missile strikes against infrastructure across Ukraine. The strategically important bridge links Ukraine with Romania and with Ukraine’s ports on the Danube, which have become critical to Ukrainian exports after the blockade of Ukrainian Black Sea ports by Russia.

In the Severodonetsk direction, the Russians were conducting assault operations in the settlement of Severodonetsk, with partial success, and established control over the eastern part of the city. A Western official said Russian rate of advance has been 500 metres to 1km per day: "incremental but pretty steady gains...at a relatively slow pace." Severodonetsk "unlikely to be the crux of the campaign". The fighting for the strategically important city of Sievjerodonetsk is in full swing. According to different sources, Russian forces have taken 50 to 70 percent of the city. Some Ukrainian troops have retreated to positions already prepared, Governor Serhiy Gaidai said. The attacks in the region are apparently aimed at cutting off the last Ukrainian-held conurbation in the Luhansk region, Sieverodonetsk-Lysychansk, and thus wiping out the troops stationed there. According to British secret services, however, Moscow is running the risk of losing control again in other occupied areas.

Sievierodonetsk is a significant industrial center in eastern Ukraine. It is also where pro-Russian separatism first started in the Donbas region almost 20 years ago. Before the war, the city had a population of about 100,000. In the Soviet era, a settlement near the Azot chemical plant, the largest in Ukraine, grew to become a new city. Not far from Luhansk, Donetsk and Kharkiv, it was named Sievierodonetsk after the river Siversky Donets in the 1950s.

Lysychansk is under Ukrainian control. It is a militarily advantageous position. The location of the city on a hill gives many opportunities. The city's defense is strong. The capture of Sieverodonetsk and the neighboring city of Lysychansk on the banks of the Seversky Donets River would give Russia de facto control of the Luhansk region of Donbass and an opportunity to announce some sort of victory after more than three months of war. Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov recently described taking Donbass as an unconditional priority for his country.

In the Volyn and Polissya areas, the main efforts of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Belarus are focused on conducting reconnaissance, engineering equipment of positions and conducting combat training activities. Mobilization exercises with military commissariats in the Gomel region are planned for June-July this year. Ukraine remains threatened by missile and air strikes from the territory of the Republic of Belarus.

In the northern direction, the Russians did not take active action, no signs of the formation of strike groups were found. In order to demonstrate the presence and restraint of units of the Ukraine Defense Forces, the Russians continued to maintain units of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation in the border areas of the Bryansk and Kursk regions. From the territory of the Kursk region, the Russians fired artillery at units of the Ukraine Defense Forces in the areas of the settlements of Bilopillya and Stukalivka, Sumy region.

In the Kharkiv direction, the main efforts of the Russians are focused on maintaining the occupied borders and restraining the advance of Ukrainian troops. In order to reduce the offensive potential of Ukrainian troops, the Russians fired at the positions of the Ukraine Defense Forces with tube and rocket artillery in the areas of the settlements of Ruski Tyshky, Zolochiv and Dergachi. In the Slavic direction, the Russians fired artillery at Ukrainian units in the areas of the settlements of Svyatogorsk and Ridne. He led the offensive in the direction of Dovhenky and Dibrivny, suffered losses and withdrew. In the Donetsk direction, the Russians struck airstrikes with operational and tactical aircraft in the areas of Avdiivka, New York, Novoselivka, Scherbakiv and army aircraft - near the settlements of Rota, Pokrovske and Novoselivka.

According to military reports, the Ukrainian army has recaptured 20 towns occupied by Russian troops in the south of the country . About half of the population has fled from these villages in the Kherson administrative region , said the head of the Ukrainian regional military administration, Hennady Lahuta, on television. The attack is being carried out from the north from the Ukrainian region of Dnipropetrovsk, the Ukrainian troops are advancing further south. The information could not be independently verified.

In the Bakhmut direction, the Russians were storming the village of Komyshuvakha, without success. The occupiers did not conduct active hostilities in the Avdiivka, Kurakhiv, Novopavliv and Zaporizhzhya areas. In the South Bug direction, the Russians continued to equip the positions and frontiers. Conducted air reconnaissance in the settlements of Ivanivka, Lepetykha and Zelenodolsk. The Russians increased the intensity of the fire damage of Ukrainian troops with mortars and artillery in the areas of the settlements of Snihurivka, Vysokopillya and Zolota Balka. They continued shelling of objects of civil infrastructure and residential quarters, shelled the city of Nikolaev. In the Bessarabian direction, no significant changes in the activities of Russians units are observed.

In the temporarily occupied territories, the Russians continues to take measures to restrict the rights and freedoms of Ukrainian citizens, restrict movement, carry out filtering measures and deepen the humanitarian crisis in these territories. Russian servicemen rob civilians. In some settlements, the Russians organizes the restoration of damaged military equipment at the facilities of local enterprises. Thus, the repair of military equipment was found in the city of Berislav in the shops of the Berislav Machine-Building Plant. The occupiers blocked access of the local population to Ukrainian mobile operators and the Internet in almost the entire temporarily occupied territory.

The official representative of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, Major General Igor Konashenkov told how the special operation of the Russian Armed Forces in Ukraine is developing. According to him, over the past night, high-precision missiles hit five command posts, as well as 29 areas of concentration of manpower and military equipment of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

Russian aviation hit 61 areas of concentration of manpower and military equipment of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, destroyed 9 tanks and infantry fighting vehicles, a BM-21 Grad MLRS battery, six artillery pieces and mortars, 13 vehicles for various purposes and one OSA-AKM air defense system. Artillerymen and missilemen hit 128 command posts, 169 firing positions of artillery and mortar batteries, as well as 623 areas of concentration of manpower and military equipment of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. 24 units of weapons and military equipment were destroyed, including a battery of 155-mm M777 howitzers, a 203-mm 2S7 Pion gun, a BM-21 combat vehicle of the Grad multiple launch rocket system, and two ammunition depots. Russian air defense systems were able to shoot down a Ukrainian Su-25 aircraft and a Mi-8 helicopter, as well as seven Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles.

Dr. Colin Kahl, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, stated 01 June 2022 "the Ukrainians will decide what success looks like. But we all have a vested interest, the entire free world has a vested interest in ensuring that Ukraine survives as a sovereign territorial democratic country. This is an assault on Ukraine, but it's also an assault on the rules-based international order. It's important that a sovereign independent democratic Ukraine endures. It's important that Russia pays a cost in excess to the benefits that they perceive from this act of aggression. Not just because aggression should be punished, but because we don't want Vladimir Putin to do this again. And we don't want other would-be aggressors to draw the lesson that aggression won't be met with significant costs."

US President Joe Biden announced a new military aid package for Ukraine that includes HIMARS multiple launch rocket systems. This was reported by the press service of the White House. “Today, I am announcing a major new security assistance package to provide timely and necessary assistance to the Ukrainian military,” Biden said. The American leader noted that the aid package will include, among other things, the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) light multiple rocket launchers and ammunition. The Himars use precision-guided munitions, with a range of about 50 miles (80 kilometers).

The UK is asking the US to sign a plan to send advanced medium-range missile systems to Ukraine within weeks. Politico writes about this, citing a source. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and US President Joe Biden discussed the transfer of US-made M270 multiple launch rocket systems to Ukraine. This was followed by a discussion between British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss and Secretary of State Anthony Blinken. According to the publication, the US must formally approve the move due to export regulations, but Washington "will certainly give a green light."

The Kremlin accused Washington of "adding fuel to the fire" by planning to supply Ukraine with advanced missile systems. "We believe that the United States is adding fuel to the fire deliberately and on purpose," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters. "Such supplies" do not encourage Kyiv to resume peace talks, Peskov said, adding that Washington wanted to "fight Russia to the last Ukrainian". Peskov said that Moscow does not trust the assurances of the Ukrainian president that the American HIMARS multiple launch rocket systems, if delivered to Kiev, will not be used to attack Russian territory.

Strikes by the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) on targets in Russia in the event that American long-range multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) are supplied to them will entail a response in the form of strikes on decision-making centers in Kyiv. This opinion was expressed by TASS military experts interviewed. The editor-in-chief of the National Defense magazine, Igor Korotchenko, noted that the supply of long-range missile weapons to the Armed Forces of Ukraine from the United States is a negative scenario for Russia. Such deliveries could be disrupted by Russian strikes on transport facilities, he added.

"In order for such deliveries not to become a reality, strikes are needed on key facilities of the Ukrainian railway, road and logistics infrastructure in the west in the first place, as well as in the south of Ukraine in order to completely block the railway communication," he said. The military expert also stressed that "any foreign weapons transferred to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, in the presence of trained Ukrainian military personnel, is a negative scenario for us."

"If the Armed Forces of Ukraine attack large Russian cities or critical infrastructure facilities of the Russian Federation with the appropriate ammunition load, there can be only one response option - an immediate retaliatory Russian" dagger "missile strike. The destruction of all key decision-making centers of the enemy, including the administration of the President of Ukraine, The Ministry of Defense, the headquarters of the SBU," he said, stressing that sea-based cruise missiles "Caliber" and operational-tactical missile systems "Iskander-M" can also be used for this.

Germany will supply Ukraine with the IRIS-T medium-range surface-to-air defence system, Chancellor Olaf Scholz said, following pleas from Kyiv as well as German opposition parties to step up heavy weapons deliveries to the country. "We have been delivering continuously since the beginning of the war," Scholz said on Wednesday, pointing to more than 15 million rounds of ammunition, 100,000 hand grenades and over 5,000 anti-tank mines sent to Ukraine since Russia invaded the country on February 24.

Poland will sell 3 squadrons of AHS 155 Krab self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine, including 54 AHS-155 KRAB systems, in addition to the recently shipped 18. These are newly manufactured vehicles, and Korea will help speed up delivery by sending ready-made K9 chassis from stock.

Switzerland vetoed Denmark's request to send Swiss made armored personnel carriers to Ukraine. They are heavily armored, are intended to offer soldiers protection in combat and come from Switzerland: the Piranha III wheeled infantry fighting vehicle. The Danish government wants to cede around 20 of its original fleet to Ukraine as arms aid. Danish authorities have officially asked the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs Seco for permission - and have been rebuffed: Seco rejected the request a few days ago. However, it remains to be seen whether Switzerland will stick to its restrictive stance. The pressure from abroad is increasing. Germany's Vice Chancellor Robert Habeck warned at the WEF last week that he wanted "maximum support" for Ukraine.

The Federal Council will decide. There are voices in the federal administration and in parliament that see room for maneuver in the War Material Act: Switzerland can very well allow European states to pass on Swiss armaments under certain conditions. Central politicians such as Councilor of States Pirmin Bischof are in favor of such a more generous interpretation: "The Federal Council should now take action and correct its practice," says the President of the Foreign Policy Commission. The Green Liberal parliamentary group leader Tiana Moser also wants a change of course. After all, it's not about direct arms exports, but about arms that Switzerland has already sold to friendly democracies: "These arms would be passed on to a country that is defending itself against an aggressor."

There is no accurate picture of the number of fatalities, either on the Russian or on the Ukrainian side. The information and estimates differ widely. NATO assumes that between 7,000 and 15,000 Russian army personnel have now lost their lives. Ukraine puts the number significantly higher, with over 27,000 Russian soldiers killed. There is no more information on this from the Russian side; the last figure, which was called at the end of March, spoke of around 1,300 soldiers killed.

Zelensky said: "The situation is very difficult; we're losing 60-100 soldiers per day as killed in action and something around 500 people as wounded in action. So we are holding our defensive perimeters." According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, observers have verified that 4,113 civilians have been killed (as of May 30), including 264 children. However, it is assumed that the actual numbers are significantly higher.

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Page last modified: 17-10-2022 19:16:49 ZULU