Russo-Ukraine War - 29 June 2022 - Day 126
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" (SVO - spetsialnaya voennaya operatsiya) 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]
"Putin wanted the finlandization of Europe, and he will have its "NATO-ization". We will reaffirm our commitment to defend every square inch of our territory; article 5 is inviolable," said US president Joe Bidenat the NATO summit in Madrid. "During the summit, the leaders of the member states will accept the historic application for membership of Finland and Sweden (in the Alliance). Their decision to abandon traditional, historic neutrality will make us stronger and safer. In my opinion, we are sending a clear signal that NATO is strong, united, and the steps we will take at this summit will further increase our collective power,"" assessed Biden.
The North Atlantic Alliance officially sees Russia as a major threat, according to a renewed strategic concept adopted by NATO at its summit in Madrid. The Alliance points to the threat that Russia poses in the Baltic, Black and Mediterranean Seas, as well as through military integration with Belarus.
About 89% of Ukrainians consider unacceptable a potential agreement with Russia that would provide for Ukraine's territorial concessions in order to achieve peace. This is evidenced by the results of a new survey commissioned by the Wall Street Journal and the NORC Research Institute at the University of Chicago. 66% of respondents expressed the belief that the Armed Forces would be able to return to Ukrainian control those territories that Russia had occupied since the full-scale invasion in February this year. Only 10% of respondents expressed doubts about this. Slightly more than half - 53% of Ukrainians surveyed - are convinced that the Armed Forces will be able to displace Russian forces from all over Ukraine, including the occupied Crimea and Donbas.
Putin said that the purpose of the "special operation" (as the war is called in Russia) is to capture Donbass and create conditions for Russia's security. "I said (February 24 - ed.) About it directly, publicly, to the whole country, to the whole world. I have nothing to add to this. Nothing changed. The ultimate goal I have set is the liberation of Donbass, the protection of these people, and the creation of conditions that would guarantee the security of Russia itself. That's all. And the work goes smoothly, rhythmically. Well, as you can see, the troops are moving and reaching those frontiers that are set as tasks at a certain stage of this combat work. Everything is going according to plan, "the Russian president was quoted as saying by Russia's Interfax news agency.
"Tactics proposed by the Ministry of Defense, the General Staff, where to move troops, where to move, what objects to hit, what to do during this time, when several groups were there in the center of Ukraine, what was to be done in Donbass, and there the regime Kyiv has been preparing for this for a long time, since 2014, so some distractions were carried out there, "Putin said.
The head of US National Intelligence, Avril Haynes, said on June 29 that Vladimir Putin had not changed his political goals and still wanted to seize most of Ukraine.
Polish President Andrzej Duda told Radio Svoboda "Today, the entire civilized free world knows that aggression is unjustified, that it is an act of banditry, that it is the realization of Russia's imperialist aspirations to expand Russia's sphere of influence, to what they call the "Russian world.""
Negotiations with the President of Russia Vladimir Putin will not bring peace, and his defeat in Ukraine must first be achieved, and then negotiations can be made, said British Foreign Minister Liz Truss. "It is absolutely necessary for us to bring about Russia's defeat in Ukraine. It is necessary for European security, freedom and democracy, and it is the only way to achieve lasting peace in Europe," said Truss during one of the panels of the Madrid of the NATO Summit.
The UK Ministry of Defence reported that Russian forces continue to make incremental advances in their efforts to encircle the town of Lysychansk. Since 25 June 2022, Russian forces have advanced a further 2km near the Lysychansk oil refinery, south of the town. There is a realistic possibility the missile strike on the Kremenchuk shopping centre on 27 June 2022 was intended to hit a nearby infrastructure target. Russia’s inaccuracy in conducting long range strikes has previously resulted in mass civilian casualty incidents, including at Kramatorsk railway station on 9 April 2022. Russian planners highly likely remain willing to accept a high level of collateral damage when they perceive military necessity in striking a target. It is almost certain that Russia will continue to conduct strikes in an effort to interdict the resupplying of Ukrainian frontline forces. Russia’s shortage of more modern precision strike weapons and the professional shortcomings of their targeting planners will highly likely result in further civilian casualties.
The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that a large-scale exchange of prisoners took place, thanks to which 144 Ukrainian defenders returned home. Among them are 95 Azovstal defenders. In the Volyn and Polissya areas, as part of the exercises, the military commissariats of the Republic of Belarus are inspecting the assigned composition and the possibility of mobilization in certain regions. In the northern direction, the Russians continues to provide enhanced protection of the Ukrainian-Russian border. In addition, the aggressor fired on civilian and military infrastructure in the settlements of Turya and Luhivka, Sumy region, and inflicted an air strike on the settlement of Ugroid.
In the Kharkiv direction, the Russians fired from tanks, mortars, artillery and rocket artillery areas of the settlements of Kharkiv, Bazaliyivka, Pryshib, Shestakove, Ruska Lozova, Verkhniy Saltiv, Ivanivka and Zamulivka. In the Slavic direction, the Russians regrouped troops and held previously occupied frontiers. Shelling was recorded in the areas of Dolyna, Bohorodychne, Mykilske, Hrushuvakha and Dovhenke settlements. The occupiers also launched an air strike near Husarivka.
In the Donetsk direction, the Russians, with the support of artillery, tries to block the city of Lysychansk and take control of the section of the highway Lysychansk - Bakhmut. Russians carried out shelling of civil and military infrastructure in the areas of the settlements of Lysychansk, Verkhnokamyanka, Siversk and an air strike in the area of the Lysychansk Oil Refinery. To support offensive action, in the area of the settlement of Verkhnokamyanka involved sabotage and reconnaissance groups. Ukrainian soldiers found and neutralized them. The remnants of the occupiers' DRG left.
In the Kramatorsk direction, the Russians did not conduct active hostilities, firing artillery at the Tetyanivka area. In the Bakhmut direction, the Russians fired at the positions of Ukrainian troops with artillery of various calibers near Klinovy, Rozdolivka, Vyymka, and Ivano-Daryivka. Russians conducted an air strike near the village of Renaissance. Russians tried to improve the tactical situation in the area of the settlement of Spirne by offensive actions, was unsuccessful, and withdrew. Ukrainian soldiers neutralized the Russians's sabotage and reconnaissance group near Berestov. In the Avdiivka, Kurakhiv, Novopavliv and Zaporizhzhya directions, the Russians fired at Ukrainian positions with mortars, artillery and rocket artillery in the areas of the settlements of Avdiivka, Vesele, Pavlivka, Bilogirya, Inzhenerne, Olhivske, Preobrazhenka and Huliaipilske. In addition, the Russian occupiers launched airstrikes on civilian infrastructure near Orikhov and Scherbaki. In the South Bug area, the Russians carried out systematic shelling of civilian and military infrastructure with artillery and rocket artillery, and regrouped troops.
In the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine, the occupying power continues to carry out measures of the administrative-police regime. The collection of personal information of local residents, compulsory certification and ban on the population to enter the territory controlled by the Ukrainian authorities are underway.
Some units of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, which were withdrawn to restore combat capability from the territory of Ukraine, were not able to replenish their units in time due to the reluctance of personnel to take part in the war against Ukraine. Personnel who refused to take part in the war were released, there are attempts to prosecute such persons.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy said "Today's Russian strike alone at the city of Mykolaiv - 10 missiles at once, and all of them were aimed at civilian targets - proves for absolutely everyone in the world that the pressure on Russia is not enough. One of these missiles, a hypersonic anti-ship missile "Onyx", destroyed an ordinary five-story building. Dismantling of the debris continued over the day. As of now, five people are known to have been killed. "
The official representative of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation, Lieutenant-General Igor Konashenkov , during a briefing spoke about the course of a special military operation of the Russian Armed Forces in Ukraine. During the offensive operations in the area of the Lisichansk oil refinery, heavy losses were inflicted on the 10th mountain assault brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. According to the captured servicemen of this brigade, the 108th battalion was completely destroyed. Of the 350 people of this unit, only 30 military personnel remained.
In the units of the 115th mechanized, 79th airborne assault and 25th airborne brigades of the Armed Forces of Ukraine operating in the Lisichansk direction, the food situation is critical. Numerous cases of abandonment of positions and desertion of military personnel are recorded due to hunger. In the area of the settlement of Pitomnik, Kharkiv region, as a result of a strike by Russian artillery, up to a hundred militants of the Nazi Kraken formation and about 10 units of military equipment were destroyed. The command of the militants decided to leave their positions and withdraw the remnants of the unit to the city of Kharkov.
The Armed Forces of the Russian Federation continue to strike at military facilities on the territory of Ukraine. The high-precision weapons of the Russian Aerospace Forces destroyed four command posts in a day, including the Kharkiv-1 and Kharkiv-2 territorial defense battalions in the Kharkov region and the foreign mercenary training base near the city of Nikolaev. Also struck: manpower and military equipment Armed Forces of Ukraine in 32 districts, a base for the repair of Armed Forces equipment in the Lisichansk region, eight depots of ammunition and weapons in the Shevchenkovo ??districts of the Kherson region, the Disputed DPR, Nikolaev and Ochakovo regions of the Nikolaev region, as well as a fuel base in the Kulbakino district of the Nikolaev region.
As part of the counter-battery combat, high-precision weapons of the Russian Aerospace Forces hit two Ukrainian platoons of Grad multiple launch rocket systems in the Kalinov and Aleksandrovo-Kalinovsk regions, as well as two artillery platoons in the Avdeevka region, which were shelling the settlements of the DPR.
Operational-tactical and army aviation, missile forces and artillery hit in a day: 39 command posts, six ammunition depots, artillery and mortar units in 68 districts, including a French-made Caesar self-propelled artillery unit on Kubansky Island , as well as manpower and military equipment in 216 districts. Operational-tactical aviation of the Russian Aerospace Forces in the Bashtanka region of the Nikolaev region shot down a MiG-29 aircraft of the Ukrainian Air Force in the air. In addition, in the Troitskoye district of the Odessa region, a self-propelled firing mount of the Buk-M1 anti-aircraft missile system was destroyed at a firing position.
Russian air defense systems shot down two Su-25 aircraft in the Kurulka region of the Kharkiv region, Kvitneve in the Kherson region and a Mi-8 helicopter of the Ukrainian Air Force in the Arkhangelsk region of the Nikolaev region in a day. Also, nine Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles were shot down in the areas of the settlements of Veseleye, Ilyichevka, Shestakovo, Pitomnik, Liptsy, Ternovaya, Sulinovka of the Kharkiv region, Tomina Balka of the Kherson region, Stakhanov and Kantemirovka of the Donetsk People's Republic. In addition, seven Ukrainian ballistic missiles "Tochka-U" were intercepted in the areas of Pesky-Radkovsky, Kapitolovka, Chervony Oskol of the Kharkiv region, Tyaginka, Novokondakovo of the Kherson region and eight rockets of the multiple launch rocket system in the areas of Kamenka, Brazhkovka of the Kharkov region, Krymki, Novoselivka.
In the afternoon, the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation reported in a daily briefing that the situation of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) in the Lysychansk region is becoming increasingly difficult. In clashes at the Lisichansk Oil Refinery, the 108th battalion of the 10th mountain assault brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine was completely defeated - about 30 people remained from several hundred soldiers and officers. In addition, militants of the 115th, 79th and 25th brigades of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, faced with an acute shortage of food, are actively surrendering or deserting in the Lisichansk region.
Assistant to the Interior Minister of the Luhansk People's Republic, Vitaliy Kiselev , said that in addition to the 500 Ukrainian military, which had already been reported earlier, 74 foreign mercenaries left Lisichansk overnight. All of them retreated to the Seversk region, where at the moment there are six battalions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, however, some units may leave the city in the near future.
Polish self-propelled howitzers "Crab" are already working on the front line. The Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valery Zaluzhny wrote about this on Facebook , Ukrinform reports. "Polish Crabs are successfully working at the forefront. ... The Armed Forces of Ukraine are sincerely grateful to the Polish people for their effective support and assistance. We feel your reliable shoulder!" - Zaluzhny wrote. These howitzers can hit targets at a distance of up to 40 km.
The US-Norwegian air defense system NASAMS will significantly improve Ukraine's situation in the war with Russia, as it will allow not only to counter air attacks, but also to intercept more various types of missiles, including cruise missiles, Ukrainian military experts quoted by Ukrinform said.
"In the next few weeks, we will start to feel the difference and see the impact of long-range artillery and missiles on Russian troops. But before that, more hell awaits us for the Ukrainian soldiers and civilians who are being fired upon by Russian artillery," said the former commander of the US army in Europe, General Ben Hodges.
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