KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Fighting has erupted in Ukraine after marking the anniversary. Russia’s invasion Ukrainian officials on Saturday announced dozens of new Russian strikes and attacks on cities in the east and south.
After a quiet and negative Memorial Day On Friday and in a marathon news conference, Ukraine’s defiant president followed up a day later with new video posts in which he declared that “Russia must be defeated in Ukraine” and argued that its forces could be defeated this year.
In a separate tweet, President Volodymyr Zelensky After UK, USA more sanctions pressure on Russia. and the European Union All announced new measures aimed at further cutting off funding and support for Moscow.
“Pressure on the Russian aggressor must increase,” Zelenskyy tweeted in English.
Ukraine wants to see “decisive measures” against Russian state nuclear company Rosatom and the Russian nuclear industry, as well as “more pressure on the military and banking,” he said.
Russian President Vladimir Putin He said this week that Rosatom and his defense ministry should work to ensure Russia is ready to resume nuclear tests. If needed. He accused the United States of developing nuclear weapons and that some in the United States were considering plans to ban nuclear tests, which had been banned worldwide since the end of the Cold War.
“If America conducts tests, we will do the same,” Putin said.
Russia has already become the world’s most sanctioned country in the past year, with sanctions targeting 30 countries that account for more than half of the global economy. But its squeeze on the economy, trade and institutions has yet to deliver a knockout blow.
Anatoly Antonov, Russia’s ambassador to Washington, said the latest US sanctions were “thoughtless”.
“We learned to live under economic and political pressure,” Antonov said. “The experience of previous sanctions has shown that they affect the world market to a great extent, worsening the situation of ordinary citizens in states that initiate or support reckless sanctions.”
February 24 is Memorial Day Last year’s invasion did not give rest to Russian attacks.
However, in one of his video posts on Saturday, Zelenskyy asked: “Is it possible for us to win?”
“Yes,” he said. “This year we can do it unitedly, decisively and unfettered to put an end to Russian aggression.”
Ukraine’s military on Saturday reported 27 Russian airstrikes and 75 strikes from multiple rocket launchers in the most recent 24-hour spell. It said Russian offensive efforts in Ukraine’s industrial east continued to be concentrated and Northeast. Five wounded civilians were reported in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk province, where the territory is split between Russian and Ukrainian control.
According to Ukraine’s ground forces, fighting raged “around” and “near” Bakhmut, a city in Donetsk region that has become the epicenter of fighting in recent months. The military said Russian forces had breached Ukrainian defenses, encircled them and continued their efforts to capture the city.
Yevgeny Prigozhin, owner of Russia’s private military company Wagner, said on Saturday that his fighters had “completely captured” the village of Yahidne on the northern outskirts of Bakhmut. The claim has not been confirmed by either the Russian military or the Ukrainian military.
In southern Kherson region, Gov. Oleksandr Prokudin reported 83 Russian shelling attacks, nine in the regional capital, also known as Kherson, where residential buildings, a preschool and a medical institution were hit. The head of Ukraine’s presidential office announced that three civilians were injured in the region.
French President Emmanuel Macron said on Saturday that he aims to hold talks with China on a trip to China in April on peace efforts related to the war in Ukraine. China has called for a ceasefire and peace talks. Zelenskyy on Friday offered qualified support to Beijing’s apparent interest in playing a role.
“China must now help us put pressure on Russia,” Macron said in Paris.
“Russia has never used chemical or nuclear weapons,” he said. “But (Russia) is stopping this aggression as a condition for a negotiation.”
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Saturday that he welcomed parts of China’s proposed peace plan for Ukraine, but disagreed with other aspects.
“There are significant valid points, such as renewed condemnation of the use of nuclear weapons,” Schalls told reporters during an official visit to India.. “What’s missing in my view is a clear line that says ‘Russian troops must also withdraw.’
Elise Morton in London, Sylvie Corbett in Paris and Frank Jordans in Berlin contributed to this report.
Follow AP’s coverage of the war in Ukraine at https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine and the anniversary of the invasion at https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine-a-year-of-war
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