Ukrainian forces are still fighting in Sievierodonetsk leading Russia-backed separatists to stop civilian evacuations from the region as Russian missiles continue to pound Ukraine on the 123rd day.

Meanwhile, Canada has deployed two warships to the Baltic Sea and North Atlantic.
Meanwhile, Canada has deployed two warships to the Baltic Sea and North Atlantic. (AP)

Sunday, June 26, 2022

Ukraine urges G7 to provide more arms, sanction Russia

The Ukrainian government has urged G7 leaders in Germany to provide more weapons and impose further sanctions against Moscow.

"G7 summit must respond with more sanctions on Russia and more heavy arms for Ukraine. Russia's sick imperialism must be defeated," Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba tweets.

Canada sends two warships to Baltic Sea to bolster security 

Canada has deployed two warships to the Baltic Sea and North Atlantic, joining a pair of frigates already in the region, to reinforce NATO's eastern flank.

Her Majesty's Canadian Ships (HMCS) Kingston and Summerside set sail for a four-month deployment as part of "deterrence measures in Central and Eastern Europe" launched in 2014 after Moscow annexed Crimea, the Canadian navy said in a statement.

Through October, the ships will participate in naval mine sweeping exercises and maintain a "high readiness" allowing them to "quickly and effectively respond in support of any NATO operations," it added.

Russia claims hitting three military training centres in Ukraine

The Russian armed forces hit three Ukrainian military facilities with high-precision weapons, the Russian Defence Ministry has said.

Igor Konashenkov, the ministry spokesperson, said that the Ukrainian military training centres were targeted in Chernihiv, Zhytomyr and Lviv.

"To date, 215 aircraft, 132 helicopters, 1,363 unmanned aerial vehicles, 350 air defence missile systems, 3,809 tanks and armoured vehicles, 682 multiple rocket launchers, and 3,012 special military vehicles have been destroyed in Ukraine," he claimed.

US sees 'profound impact' in Russia sanctions

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said that Western sanctions on Russia over its attacks on Ukraine were having "a profound impact."

He said in an interview with CNN at the G-7 summit in Germany that "even as (Russia) gets oil revenues with higher prices it's unable to spend them because of the export controls."

He said: Russia “can’t acquire what it needs to modernise its defence sector, to modernise its technology, to modernise its energy exploration, which means that over time each of these areas is going to go in decline." He referred to forecasts that reckon the Russian economy will shrink by up to 15 percent next year.

Missiles kill one person and hit strategic bridge near Ukraine's Cherkasy: officials 

Russian missiles struck near the central Ukrainian city of Cherkasy, killing one person and hitting a bridge that helps connect western regions with eastern battle zones, Ukrainian officials have said.

Cherkasy has been largely untouched by bombardment since the conflict started in February, but Russia has stepped up missile attacks across Ukraine this weekend.

"Today, the enemy launched missile attacks on the Cherkasy region. There are 2 strikes near the regional centre. One dead and five wounded. Infrastructure damaged," said regional governor Ihor Taburets on the Telegram app.

Biden calls latest Russian bombing of Kiev 'barbarism'

US President Joe Biden has described Russia's latest bombing of Ukraine's capital Kiev as "barbarism" at the G7 summit in Germany.

"It's more of their barbarism," Biden told reporters at the summit site in the German Alps, when asked for his reaction to the Russian missile strikes against a residential building.

Russia strikes Kiev residential neighbourhood

Russia has attacked the Ukrainian capital, striking at least two residential buildings, Kiev Mayor Vitali Klitschko has said.

Klitschko said four people were hospitalised with injuries and a seven-year-old girl was pulled alive from the rubble. Culture minister Oleksandr Tkachenko said on Telegram that a kindergarten was hit in the attacks.

Ukraine Member of Parliament Oleksiy Goncharenko wrote on the Telegram messaging app that “according to prelim data 14 missiles were launched against Kiev region and Kiev.” Air Force spokesperson Yuriy Ignat said the missiles were Kh-101 air-launched cruise missiles fired from planes over the Caspian Sea.

G7 summit kicks off under shadow of Ukraine conflict

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz welcomes leaders of the Group of Seven nations to a three-day summit in the Bavarian Alps overshadowed by the conflict in Ukraine and its far-reaching consequences, from energy shortages to a food crisis.

The leaders of the United States, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan, plus the European Union, were spending the day in both formal and informal settings, including working sessions on dealing with the conflict's effects on the global economy.

US President Joe Biden said that the United States and other Group of Seven leading economies will ban imports of gold from Russia.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz welcomes US President Joe Biden for a bilateral meeting at Castle Elmau in Kruen, near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz welcomes US President Joe Biden for a bilateral meeting at Castle Elmau in Kruen, near Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. (Reuters)

Vast majority of elite Ukrainian unit injured or dead - Marine Commander

A commander of an elite unit of Ukrainian marines in the key Sievierodonetsk city has said that around 80 percent of his experienced soldiers have been incapacitated from serious injuries or death.

“My unit was 100 percent made up of professional soldiers who had a lot of experience. Now 80 percent are incapacitated from serious injuries or death,” Ukrainian Naval Infantry Marines Commander ‘Oleksandr’ told British broadcaster Sky News.

Russia's defence ministry has said on Saturday that Russian forces had established full control over Sievierodonetsk. 

Russia's Shoigu visits troops involved in Ukraine operation- ministry

Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu has inspected Russian troop units involved in Ukraine, the defence ministry has said.

"At the command posts of Russian units, Army General Sergei Shoigu heard reports from the commanders on the current situation and actions of the Russian Armed Forces in the main operational areas," the ministry said in a statement.

It was not immediately clear when the visit took place or if Shoigu had visited Ukraine itself.

Indonesia president to visit Ukraine, Russia on peace-building mission

Indonesian President Joko Widodo has said he will urge his Russian and Ukrainian counterparts to open room for dialogue during a peace-building mission to the two countries and ask Russia's Vladimir Putin to order an immediate ceasefire.

"War has to be stopped and global food supply chains need to be reactivated," Jokowi, as the president is popularly known, said before leaving for Germany to attend the G7 summit.

Russia presses to control last stronghold of Ukraine's Luhansk

Russian forces were seeking to swallow up the last remaining Ukrainian stronghold in the eastern Luhansk region, pressing their momentum after taking full control Saturday of the charred ruins of Sievierodonetsk and the chemical plant where hundreds of Ukrainian troops and civilians had been holed up.

Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said that Russian and Moscow-backed separatist forces now control Sievierodonetsk and the villages surrounding it. He said the attempt by Ukrainian forces to turn the Azot plant into a “stubborn center of resistance” had been thwarted.

But Oleksiy Arestovych, advisor to President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said some Ukrainian special forces are still in Sievierodonetsk, directing artillery fire against Russians which local police there said they had to suspend evacuation of people, Tass cites local Russian police.

UK ready to guarantee extra $525M loan for Ukraine — Johnson

Britain is ready to guarantee a further $525 million of World Bank loans to Ukraine later this year, taking total fiscal support this year to $1.5 billion, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said ahead of a G7 meeting in Germany.

"Ukraine can win and it will win. But they need our backing to do so. Now is not the time to give up on Ukraine," Johnson said in a statement.

For live updates from Saturday (June 25), click here

Source: TRTWorld and agencies