Kiev, Ukraine — Ukrainians reported on Monday that they pushed back the Russian invasion in fierce fighting around Kyiv and northeastern Ukraine. Meanwhile, the Russians besieged and blocked the Ukrainian army in the east, and the diplomatic resolution of the war was still far away.
Ukraine’s counterattack around Kyiv reportedly said that most Russian troops withdrew, although fighting continued in some areas, along with Irpin’s mayor in the suburbs, which was fiercely contested at the northwestern tip of the capital. And regained more land. Retaining Kyiv is strategically important.
“Our Irpin has been freed from the evils of Moscow,” Irpin’s mayor, Oleksandr Marxin, posted in a telegram on Monday. Turned back, and the Russians continued to bombard the town.
Diplomacy continued between the warring nations, with Russian and Ukrainian delegations arriving in Istanbul for another round of negotiations starting Tuesday.
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said he was ready to discuss Ukraine’s future neutrality, but he could gain his own security and hand over territory to Russia or his country only after a referendum. I refused to do that. -Declared a republic in the southeastern region known as Donbus, as requested by Russian President Vladimir Putin.
In Washington, President Biden said in a comment on Mr Putin on Saturday that “for God, this man cannot maintain power.” Delivered in Warsaw was an expression of his personal anger, not a statement of US policy that Russian leaders should be defeated.
On the battlefield, in addition to the interests around Kyiv, Ukrainians also reported significant progress in the Sumy region, northwest of Kharkov, near the border with Russia. Dmitro Zibitzky, head of regional military administration, is Ukrainian Trostyanets and Boromlya. Pentagon officials have confirmed the recapture of Trostyanets.
Russian troops are trying to block the major Ukrainian troops east of the Dnieper River. There, most of the army is fighting Russian troops and Russian-backed separatists in Donbus, which Moscow recognizes as independent Donetsk and Luhansk. Russia’s purpose is to prevent Ukrainian troops from coming to Kyiv’s aid, and Russian military officials said their war effort was concentrated in the east of the country over the weekend.
Despite those comments, Russian troops continued to fight for control of the major towns east and northwest of Kyiv.
Russian troops occupied the southern corridor between the Crimean Peninsula and Donbus, which was occupied from Ukraine in 2014. Mariupol was destroyed by artillery, rocket artillery, and airstrikes, and seems determined to occupy it.
“Russian troops appear to be concentrating their efforts to siege Ukrainian troops, heading in the direction of Kharkov to the north and Mariupol to the south, directly facing the separatist region of the eastern part of the country,” the British Defense Ministry said. Said. In the statement.
Mariupol’s mayor spokesman Vadym Boichenko said Monday that about 5,000 people were killed, including about 210 children. These numbers could not be confirmed. The mayor’s office also said that 90% of the building was damaged and 40 people were damaged. Percentages have been destroyed and about 170,000 people still remain in the city — again, no numbers can be confirmed.
“The city is still in a difficult situation. People are crossing the boundaries of a humanitarian catastrophe. Mariupol needs to be completely evacuated,” Boychenko, who left the city, told national television on Monday.
In the weeks of talks between Ukrainian and Russian representatives, there were no clear diplomatic measures to end the war. Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said on Monday that the decision to continue speaking directly was important. We can’t talk about progress yet, and we don’t. “
In an interview with independent Russian media on Sunday (an interview censored by Russia itself), Zelensky reaffirmed his willingness to meet at least some Russian demands.
“Security and neutral nations, the non-nuclear status of our state-we are ready to go for it,” he said.
However, it is not clear what neutrality means. Putin argued that Ukraine should never participate in NATO, and Zelensky seems to have accepted it, but it is a demilitarized, undefined term. Putin will also accept accession to Ukraine and the European Union.
After all, Mr Putin has responded strongly to Ukraine’s approach to Europe in the past, pressured Ukraine’s last president, Viktor Yanukovych, to revoke the promised trade deal with the European Union. .. After expelling Yanukovych in 2014, Putin invaded Crimea and spurred a separatist war on Donbus.
On Sunday, Mr. Zelensky again called for direct negotiations with Mr Putin, but Russian Foreign Minister Sergei V. Viklov reiterated on Monday that such negotiations had to wait for further progress in peace talks. Russian war.
A report came out earlier Monday that a Russian billionaire trying to act as a Ukrainian peace negotiator and mediator could have been poisoned earlier this month, but the situation was very uncertain and affected. All the people have recovered.
The first report by The Wall Street Journal and research group Bellingcat shows that at least two Ukrainian peace negotiators and Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, who tried to act as intermediaries, developed anomalous symptoms at the same time at an early stage. I showed that I did. March after meeting in Kyiv — red eyes, constantly painful tears, peeling of skin on the face and hands.
The explanation of the symptoms was confirmed by someone near Mr. Abramovich in the Times.
When asked about the report, members of the Ukrainian negotiation team did not speak to them directly. “There are a lot of speculations and various conspiracy theories,” said one person, Mihairo Podryak. Another, Rustem Umerov, referred to “unconfirmed information.”
Reuters reported that an unnamed US official “knowledgeable” about the issue said the illness could have been caused by “environmental factors.”
Within Russia, censorship of Zelensky’s interview was another sign of information oppression. The government has made criticizing the war essentially a criminal offense. Or even called it war. Dmitri A. Muratov, who defines and editors of fearless journalism in the post-Soviet era, shared the Nobel Peace Award last year, stopped publishing in print and online, at least until the end of the war, and criticized Russia. Kremlin left without a major media exit.
President Biden has not withheld Mr Putin and his own contempt for the war. On Monday, Peskov said Biden’s comment in Warsaw that Putin was not in power was “of course concerned.” Continuing to follow the statements of the President of the United States very carefully, we have documented them in detail and will continue to do so. “
French President Emmanuel Macron, who is aiming for reelection next month, warned on Sunday in a tacit criticism of Mr. Biden against the escalation of words and actions. He said he hoped to achieve “a ceasefire first, then a complete withdrawal of the army by diplomatic means.” “If you want to do that, you can’t escalate with words or actions,” he added.
Zelensky has consistently established NATO and Western countries a no-fly zone over Ukraine, to supply fighter aircraft, and to accelerate the flow of advanced weapons such as armed drones, surface-to-air missiles, and anti-tank missiles. Has demanded further action. Tank weapons, not to mention thousands of ammunition. Washington and its allies have excluded no-fly zones. They haven’t refused to offer the aircraft, but haven’t delivered anything so far.
In an interview with a Kyiv economist, Zelensky said he promised victory and sought further help.
“We believe in victory. It is impossible to believe anything else.” But to achieve that, Ukraine needs tanks, armored personnel carriers and military aircraft, and now they Is required.
Western nations can promise help in the coming weeks, he said. “Russians have thousands of military vehicles and they come and go,” he said.
Andrew E. Kramer Report from Kyiv Stephen Ellanger From Brussels.The report was contributed by Carlotta Goal When Maria Valenikova From Kyiv Valerie Hopkins From Lviv, Ukraine Anton Troy Anovsky When Ivan Nechepurenko From Istanbul Michael D. Shear From Washington, and Tariq Punja, Karisoto When Coke Engel Brecht From London.