Zelenskyy: south Ukraine, Donbas in dire situation

Zelenskyy: south Ukraine, Donbas in dire situation

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said the situation in southern Ukraine and Donbas “remains extremely difficult” as Russia continues to prioritize military operations in the separatist controlled region.

Speaking in a video posted on social media on Thursday, Zelensky said Russian forces are “trying to figure out how to consolidate their presence there.”

In the Donbas region; the besieged southern city of Mariupol and in the direction of northeastern city of Kharkiv; “Russian troops are accumulating the potential for strikes,” Zelensky warned.

This echoes the remarks of a senior US defense official on Thursday who said that the Donbas is one of the four areas where Russia is focusing current airstrikes.

On Thursday evening, Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said it is “clear the Russians want to reprioritize their operations in the Donbas area.”

Also read: Zelensky: At least 103 children killed in Ukraine

Russian forces were regrouping in order to “intensify operations in priority areas and; above all; to complete the operation for the complete liberation of Donbas,” Russian Ministry of Defense spokesperson Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said on Wednesday.

Zelensky reiterated Ukraine’s commitment to “do everything we can to stop the invaders.”


European Parliament president will be first leader of EU institution to travel to Ukraine since invasion began

From CNN’s James Frater in Brussels and Niamh Kennedy in London

European Parliament President Roberta Metsola will be the first leader of an EU institution to travel to Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion.

No details of the trip or the president’s agenda in Ukraine; have been shared prior to the visit “due to security concerns,” a European Parliament official told CNN.

In a speech on Monday; Metsola called it “important for the European Parliament to support Ukraine’s aspiration to be a candidate country for accession.”

In a tweet, Metsola said “on my way to Kyiv.”


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