Ukraine claims Russia is preparing for a big attack in March; if this is the case, Russian invaders will face cutting-edge Western weaponry.
Prime Minister Mark Rutte told Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday in the Oval Office, “We have the aim to join what you are doing with Germany on the Patriot project,” making the Netherlands the third nation to offer air defense assistance to Ukraine with Patriot surface-to-air weapons.
Rutte told reporters that following the Russian missile assault on a building in Dnipro over the weekend, which killed more than 40 people, his nation was even more motivated to defend Ukraine.
In his Tuesday night video message, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked everyone involved and said, “We already have three assured batteries.” But we’ve barely scratched the surface here. We are now considering new options to improve our anti-aircraft capabilities.
Aid is being increased in certain other locations. As part of a broader arms deal, the United Kingdom has promised to supply 14 Challenger 2 tanks, and it is now attempting to convince other allies to provide similarly sophisticated weaponry.
France and Poland have already pledged to deploy cutting-edge tanks, and they are among the countries putting pressure on Germany to deliver its own Leopard 2 tanks, or at least to allow other countries to give them to Ukraine. Since the tanks originate in Germany, that’s a must.
Despite being at the forefront of military aid to Ukraine, the United States has not yet sent any troops there.
In related news:
U.S. Army Chief of Staff General Mark Milley and his Ukrainian counterpart, Gen. Valerii Zaluzhnyi, met for the first time along the Ukrainian and Polish border on Tuesday.
Olena Zelenska, the first lady of Ukraine, asked international leaders and business executives at the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, Switzerland, to use their power to fight the widespread suffering from Russia’s conflict in Ukraine, such as food shortages.
On Tuesday, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that the country’s armed forces will grow from 1.15 million to 1.5 million personnel by the year 2026. In addition, Putin promised to increase the number of training fields, including those “in the new borders of Russia,” which seems to be Ukraine.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz appointed regional politician Boris Pistorius as military minister in response to demands to equip Ukraine with modern tanks. Christine Lambrecht, who resigned on Monday after receiving harsh criticism for the country’s tepid approach to the conflict in Ukraine, has been replaced by Oscar Pistorius.
On Monday, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy met in Kyiv. Washington’s “strong and steady commitment to Ukraine” was reaffirmed, according to State Department spokesman Ned Price.
Russians responsible for missile attack face criminal charges; Ukrainian troops deployed at Fort Sill: Latest updates
For Putin, protecting Donbas and “subsuming all of Ukraine” are equally important goals.
Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin’s spokesperson, remained silent on Tuesday about claims made by the Ukrainian intelligence agency that Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered his military leaders to complete the control of the industrial Donbas area of eastern Ukraine by March.
When asked to comment on the accusation, Peskov reportedly answered, “I cannot, and have zero intention of doing so,” according to Russia’s state-run Tass news agency.
Ukrainian intelligence agency spokesperson Andrey Yusov said Putin personally issued the order to Valery Gerasimov, the new commander of Russian troops in Ukraine. This claim comes as Western countries race to provide tanks and missile defense systems to Ukraine to help it fight back against Russia’s invasion, which has been going on for over 11 months.
For a long time, the fighting has been centered in the Donbas area. Provinces of Donetsk and Luhansk, where separatists supported by Russia have declared a “people’s republic,” are included. ” Though they “annexed” the area late last year, Russia’s military is still not able to assert complete authority.
In an interview with CNN on Tuesday, National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby warned that capturing the Donbas is just part of Putin’s plan.
Kirby said that “Mr. Putin has not abandoned his greater geopolitical ambitions here.” It’s not only the Donbas at stake here, nor is it Bakhmut or Kherson. As of yet, Mr. Putin has not stopped talking about absorbing all of Ukraine into Russia.
A Russian missile attack on a Dnipro residential complex has resulted in an increasing death toll.
At least 45 people, including six children, were murdered last weekend when a Russian missile plowed into an apartment building in the center of Ukraine, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine stated on Tuesday.
Dnipro’s National Police Chief Igor Klymenko has reported that rescue efforts have concluded at the site of the nine-story building where roughly 1,700 people were living. Klymenko said on Facebook that sixteen children were among the 79 wounded, with 28 sent to hospitals and 10 listed as being in critical condition.
Fourteen children were among the almost 20 persons still missing. It was reported that some individuals were stuck on higher levels and were using their phones’ flashing lights to call for assistance. Four hundred individuals were displaced from their houses.
Zelenskyy said categorically, “There is no doubt: Every individual culpable of this war crime will be discovered and brought to justice.”
Russian officials said Ukrainian air defense systems were to blame for the destruction, despite denials from Moscow.
According to Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov, “the Russian military forces do not target residential structures or social infrastructure.” They’re attacking military installations.
The Russian missile that damaged the residential building was “notoriously imprecise.”
According to the British Defense Ministry’s most recent assessment of the conflict, released on Tuesday, the missile that destroyed the Dnipro apartment complex on Saturday was one of many launched by Russia targeting Ukraine’s infrastructure and likely hit the residential building by mistake. The evaluation concluded that a Russian aircraft was likely responsible for firing an AS-4 KITCHEN heavy anti-ship missile.
Russia “falsely inferred” that a Ukrainian air defense missile was to blame, according to the report. KITCHEN’s radar guidance system has trouble discriminating targets in congested metropolitan locations, making it infamously imprecise when deployed against ground targets.
At least 20 people were murdered in an attack on a Kremenchuk shopping complex in June, and it seems likely that these deaths were caused by the same kind of weapon.
Russia’s long-range attack capabilities are “functional to a deeper degree,” the study concludes, “although certain missiles like KITCHEN are unsuited for precision strike.”
Mistaking air defense for the cause of a building attack, a Ukrainian official has resigned in shame.
According to a report Russia quickly seized to escape blame for an attack that killed dozens of civilians, a high-ranking Ukrainian official resigned after falsely claiming the Russian missile that struck the Dnipro building on Saturday exploded and fell after being shot down by the Ukrainian air defenses.
Oleksii Arestovych, an advisor to the president, apologized for his comments, calling them a “major error,” in an interview late Saturday. Ukrainian air defenses quickly shot down his claim, stating their nation lacked the technology to shoot down the Russian Kh-22 supersonic missiles that had destroyed the residential complex.
More than 210 missiles of this sort have been fired on Ukrainian territory since the commencement of Russia’s military activity, the air force claimed. There was no aircraft loss due to enemy anti-aircraft fire.
Arestovych said, “I would want to demonstrate an example of decent behavior: a mistake in principle, thus, resignation,” on his Facebook page.
Australian Open flag fluttering incident
Officials at the Australian Open tennis tournament banned Russian and Belarusian flags on Tuesday because they were considered provocative. Flags of participating nations are normally permitted at the first Grand Slam event of the year, but those of Russia and Belarus, the country that authorized Moscow’s invasion, are not.
Initially, Tennis Australia’s regulation allowed spectators to carry (flags), but they could not be used to create a disturbance. In yesterday’s incident, a flag was put courtside. With the help of the players and the spectators, we will keep improving the court conditions.
Ukraine’s Kateryna Baindl prevailed against Russia’s Kamilla Rakhimova in three sets on Monday, with a single Russian flag flying above. Daniil Medvedev, a highly-rated tennis player from Russia, defeated Marcos Giron in straight sets, 6-0, 6-1, 6-2 later that day. He was given the flag of his nation to sign.
Because of the conflict in Ukraine, Russian and Belarusian players were not allowed to compete in Wimbledon in 2014. They will be allowed to participate in all four Grand Slam tournaments, but as “neutral” athletes who will not represent their country.