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Ukraine Daily Summary - Wednesday, 27 April 2022

Sumy region shelled from across Russian border -- Russia fires two missiles over Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant -- Russia prepares missile strikes on Transnistria with civilian casualties -- and more

Ukraine Daily

Wednesday, 27 April 2022

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Russia’s war against Ukraine


Residential building in the city center bombed around 11 a.m. by the Russian armed forces in Kharkiv, Ukraine on March 14, 2022. (Photo by Andrea Carrubba/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Dnipropetrovsk Oblast heavily shelled overnight, large fire at energy infrastructure site. Russian troops shelled the city of Zelenodolsk, as well as the villages of Maryanske and Velyka Kostromka in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, damaging energy infrastructure and causing oil leaks and a large fire at the site, Dnipropetrovsk Oblast Governor Valentyn Reznichenko said on April 27 on Telegram. Reznichenko said it took rescuers hours to put out the fire and one person has been hospitalized.

Sumy region shelled from across Russian border. The village of Rivne in Konotop district of Sumy Oblast was fired upon at least 15 times from heavy weapons, Ukraine’s State Border Guard Service reports. There are no casualties among the soldiers.

Russian air strike hits Zaporizhzhia Oblast. According to Zaporizhzhia Oblast military administration, at 6:50 a.m. local time a few missile strikes were reported in the region. One person was killed and another wounded, although the total number of casualties has yet to be confirmed.

Russia fires two missiles over Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, explosions heard in city. Low-flying missiles put the safety of the plant, and the world, at risk, said the head of Ukraine’s nuclear company Energoatom, Petro Kotin, on April 26. Zaporizhzhia’s nuclear plant, the largest in Europe, was captured by Russian forces on March 4 and remains under their control.

Media: Russians launch missile attack on Odesa Oblast, damage bridge across the Dniester estuary. Ukrainian media reported that the bridge from the Bilhorod-Dnistrovskyi District to Odesa was closed due to the damage.

Mariupol defenders: Russian forces launch 35 air strikes overnight on Azovstal plant, injuring civilians. Azov fighters said they are giving first aid to the injured civilians and helping them get out of the rubble. According to Mariupol City Council, there are more than 1,000 civilians hiding in underground shelters of the plant, where the besieged city’s last remaining Ukrainian defenders are holding out against Russian forces.

Deputy Defense Minister: Russia has fired 1,300 missiles at Ukraine since start of Russia’s full-scale invasion. According to Deputy Defense Minister Anna Malyar, Russia’s reserves of available missiles have more than halved since Feb. 24. The missiles fired at Ukraine include air, sea, and land based missiles.

Russian media Meduza: Explosions reported at ammunition depot in Russian-occupied Luhansk region. Russian independent news outlet Meduza reported that on April 26 local residents reported multiple explosions lasting several hours at an ammunition depot in the town of Irmino, Luhansk Oblast, which has been under Russian occupation since 2014.

Ammunition depot in Belgorod, Russia catches fire. Governor of Belgorod Oblast Vyacheslav Gladkov reported early on April 27 that an ammunition depot was on fire near the village of Staraya Nelidovka, less than 20 miles from the Ukrainian border. Gladkov said that according to preliminary data no homes had been hit and there were no civilian casualties.

Russian state-controlled media: Transnistria may soon decide to ‘protect the interests of the republic.’ Several explosions occurred in the Russian-occupied territory of Moldova on April 25, which Ukraine labeled a false-flag operation to stir tensions and possibly justify an attack by Transnistria from the south. Similar rhetoric was used by Kremlin proxies in eastern Ukraine prior to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24.

General Staff says Russian troops in Transnistria on high alert. In the Russian-occupied regions of Moldova, there are currently about 8,000 soldiers, including nearly 3,000 Russian troops, according to Vadym Denysenko, advisor to the interior minister. Soldiers are in “full combat readiness,” General Staff reported.

Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence: Russia prepares missile strikes on Transnistria with civilian casualties. Residents of the Russian-occupied region of Moldova have received fake messages on their phones allegedly from the Armed Forces of Ukraine with advice to evacuate due to planned missile strikes. Russian media propaganda actively spreads this news, Ukraine’s Defense Ministry’s Intelligence Directorate reported.

Russia threatens to attack Kyiv’s ‘decision-making centers’ in case of strikes on facilities in Russian territory. Kremlin-controlled media Ria Novosti reported, citing Russia’s Defense Ministry, that Moscow sees the U.K. Minister of the Armed Forces James Heappey’s comments about Ukraine’s right to strike at facilities such as fuel and ammunition depots in Russia as a provocation that “will immediately lead to our proportional response.”

Russia, Belarus to hold joint training of air force, air defense on April 26-29. Belarusian Defense Ministry announced that it will hold joint drills with Russia’s Armed Forces to improve the interaction between aviation and air defense control bodies.

DTEK: Impossible to restore electricity to a third of residents in Donetsk Oblast. The CEO of Ukraine’s largest energy company, Maxim Timchenko, said on April 26 that DTEK tried to restore power lines in the region but did not succeed.

Ukrainian Armed forces strike Russian positions on Snake Island, destroy anti-aircraft missile system. The Ukrainian Operational Command South reported on April 26 that its forces struck at Russian positions on Snake Island, hitting the command post and destroying a Strela-10 anti-aircraft missile system.

UK Intelligence: Ukraine retains control over the majority of its airspace. According to latest British Defense Ministry update from April 27, Russia has failed to effectively destroy the Ukrainian Air Force or suppress Ukrainian air defenses, while Ukraine continues to hold Russian air assets at risk. Russian air activity is primarily focused on southern and eastern Ukraine to provide support to Russia’s ground forces. The update also said that the majority of Russia’s airstrikes in Mariupol are likely being conducted using unguided free-falling bombs, which are ineffective at hitting targets and increase the risk of civilian casualties.

The human cost of Russia’s war

3 civilians killed and 7 injured after Russian shelling in Kharkiv Oblast on April 26. Kharkiv Oblast Governor Oleh Synegubov said Russia continues to heavily shell the city of Kharkiv and Kharkiv Oblast, killing and wounding civilians.

3 civilians killed and 6 injured by Russian shelling in Donetsk Oblast on April 26. Donetsk Oblast Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said the three civilians were killed in the Donetsk Oblast cities of Lyman, New York, and May. Kyrylenko also said while it was possible to identify one wounded in Mariupol, the exact number of victims in Mariupol and Volnovakha is currently impossible to establish.

Reports of severe food shortages, forced labor in exchange for food in Mariupol. According to Petro Andryushchenko, advisor to the mayor of Mariupol, on April 26, Russian troops are forcing men to take part in the removal of rubble and digging of mass graves in exchange for food.

Prosecutor General’s Office: Russia’s war kills 217 children since Feb. 24, injures 391. The figures are expected to be higher since they do not include child casualties in the areas where hostilities are ongoing and in the occupied areas. On April 25, two children aged 9 and 13 were killed as a result of Russia’s shelling of Lyman city in Donetsk Oblast.

Denisova: Cases of sexual assault by Russian soldiers reach 400, children among victims. Ombudsman Lyudmyla Denisova said that after providing a hotline to report incidents of sexual violence and to seek psychological assistance, her office received around 400 complaints between April 1-14. Denisova said the number of reports continues to grow.

Ukraine’s military: Russia has lost around 22,100 troops in Ukraine since start of war. Ukraine’s Armed Forces reported on Facebook on April 26 that Russia has also lost 918 tanks, 2,308 armored personnel carriers, 1,643 vehicles, 416 artillery systems, 149 multiple launch rocket systems, 69 anti-aircraft defense systems, 154 helicopters, 184 aircraft, 76 fuel tanks, 205 UAVs, and eight boats.

International response

Putin meets UN Secretary-General in Moscow, denies hostilities in Mariupol and atrocities in Bucha. The Russian president called the situation in occupied Mariupol, where 22,000 civilians had died according to local authorities, “difficult” but “simple.” He called the Bucha massacre, where Russian soldiers tortured and killed more than 400 people, a “provocation.”

Germany approves delivery of anti-aircraft tanks to Ukraine in major policy shift. German Defense Minister Christine Lambrecht said that its government will grant permission to German company Krauss-Maffei Wegmann to send the “Gepard” tanks to Ukraine. The official announced the move at a defense conference involving 40 countries hosted by the U.S. at the Ramstein U.S. air base in Germany to bolster Ukraine’s defense capabilities as it battles Russia’s invasion.

Suddeutsche Zeitung: Germany to supply Ukraine with Gepard anti-aircraft systems. The provision of almost 50 self-propelled anti-aircraft systems will reportedly be announced by Germany in a meeting with allies at U.S. Ramstein Air Base on April 26.

Germany is ‘days away’ from becoming independent of Russian oil, official says. During a visit to Warsaw, German Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck said his country is “very, very” close to independence of Russian oil thanks to the efforts to diversify suppliers as well as the support from the Polish government. Though Russian oil imports made up about 35% of Germany’s oil consumption in 2021, Habeck said that his country, which had been reluctant to support an oil embargo, agrees that “we must quickly free ourselves from the grip of Russian imports.”

Poland sanctions Gazprom, Russian and Belarusian oligarchs. The sanctions include property freezes, exclusions from participation in tenders, and a ban on oligarchs from entering Poland. According to Poland’s Interior Minister Mariusz Kaminski on April 26, the list is likely to expand.’

Gazprom to stop gas supply to Poland, Bulgaria on April 27. According to the Russian government-controlled TASS news agency, Gazprom informed the Bulgarian energy ministry that it will halt gas supplies. Polish news outlet Onet reported that PGNiG, a Polish state gas company, was cut off from Russian gas due to the country declining to pay for gas in rubles.

UK dismisses Lavrov’s nuclear threats as ‘bravado,’ sees no imminent threat of escalation in Ukraine. Britain’s armed forces minister James Heappey told BBC that the possibility of Russia using tactical nuclear weapons was “vanishingly small” and “it suits the Kremlin’s narrative to claim that they are somehow in a confrontation with NATO,” but it is “nonsense and (Russian Foreign Minister Sergey) Lavrov knows it.”

US Defense Secretary calls for creation of Ukraine Contact Group to win war against Russia. Secretary Lloyd Austin said during the Ukraine-focused defense conference at Germany’s Ramstein Air Base that the group would be open to any country willing to ramp up military support for Ukraine. “We’ve got to move at the speed of war,” said Austin.

US diplomats temporarily return to Ukraine for first time since Russia’s full-scale invasion. U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price said that multiple team members of the U.S. embassy in Ukraine met in Lviv with Ukrainian officials before returning to Poland. “Today’s travel was a first step ahead of more regular travel in the immediate future,” Price said.

Canada to purchase 8 armored vehicles for Ukraine. Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand wrote on Twitter that Canada has finalized a contract for eight armored vehicles manufactured by Roshel. “We will supply them to our Ukrainian friends as soon as possible,” she wrote.

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Today’s Ukraine Daily was brought to you by Alexander Query, Asami Terajima, Natalia Datskevych, Teah Pelechaty, Sergiy Slipchenko, Oleksiy Sorokin, Olga Rudenko, Toma Istomina and Lili Bivings.

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