Ukraine Daily Summary - Saturday, March 11

Russian troops in Ukraine act as if international law does not exist -- Human Rights advocate turned soldier Butkevych sentenced to 13 years by Russian proxies in Donbas; no legal grounds for sentence -- Russia unlikely to make significant gains launching new counteroffensive in Vuhledar -- Who was ‘Da Vinci,’ legendary young commander killed near Bakhmut? -- and more

Saturday, March 11

Russia’s war against Ukraine

Deminers clear the forest so that electrical crews can work outside of Svitohirsk, Ukraine on March 8, 2023. Mines planted by Russian forces claim lives, injure civilians in Ukraine. (Photo by Wolfgang Schwan/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Finnish Prime Minister visits Kyiv, meets Zelensky, attends funeral of fallen soldier. Apart from defense and security, President Volodymyr Zelensky and Finnish Prime Minister Sanna Marin also discussed the significance of halting Russia’s attempts to evade sanctions by trading with third-party nations.

Zelensky denies Ukraine’s involvement in Nord Stream attacks. “It’s funny, to be honest,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said about recent media reports suggesting Ukraine was linked to the pipelines’ sabotage. “We are interested in weapons being supplied, sanctions being introduced, and our victory.”

Media: Human Rights advocate turned soldier Butkevych sentenced to 13 years by Russian proxies in Donbas. Former Ukrainian journalist and human rights advocate Maksym Butkevych has been sentenced to 13 years in prison by Russian-led proxies in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts. According to international law, Russian-led militants’ so-called “prison sentence” has no legal grounds.

ISW: Russia unlikely to make significant gains launching new counteroffensive in Vuhledar. Russia may attempt to launch another counteroffensive in Vuhledar but is unlikely to make significant gains due to issues with military personnel and ammunition supply, according to the Institute for the Study of War (ISW).

Satellite images show destruction in Bakhmut. Recently published satellite images from Maxar Technologies show the magnitude of destruction across Bakhmut in Donetsk Oblast as of March 6.

SBU: Antonov officials suspected of obstructing Hostomel Airport defense in early 2022. The former head of Antonov State Enterprise, his deputy, and the head of the aviation security unit are suspected of impeding the Ukrainian military from securing the Hostomel Airport on the eve of Russia’s all-out war, according to Ukraine’s Security Service (SBU).

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Bloomberg: Putin might attend G20 summit in India. The Kremlin postponed the annual Eastern Economic Forum in Vladivostok, scheduled on the eve of the G20 summit in New Delhi, to open up the possibility of the trip to India, Bloomberg reported, citing unnamed people familiar with the matter. According to the report, Putin has yet to make a final decision on whether to attend it, but “the Kremlin is planning for him to participate in the summit.”

Governor: Electricity restored for 90% of people in Kharkiv Oblast. Electricity has been restored for 90% of people in Kharkiv Oblast following March 9 mass Russian missile strike, Governor Oleh Syniehubov said. However, public transport that depends on electricity is still not fully operational, the governor added.

DTEK: Energy restored to Kyiv and Odesa oblasts. Energy has been fully restored to residents in Kyiv and Odesa oblasts following Russia’s mass missile strike against Ukraine on March 9, according to Ukraine’s private energy company DTEK.

Survey: Number of Ukrainian speakers increased to 71% amid full-scale war. The number of Ukrainians who speak Ukrainian in everyday life increased from 64% in 2021 to 71% in 2022, according to a survey conducted by the Democratic Initiatives Foundation. Yet, the survey notes that collecting information from Ukrainians living on the front lines or in the occupied territories was impossible.

Read our exclusives

Ukraine war latest: Ukraine holds onto Bakhmut as the country mourns legendary soldier killed near the ruined city.

Ukraine’s Defense Ministry acknowledged on March 10 that the battle for Bakhmut is becoming more difficult as Russia keeps up its offensive and continues trying to “break through the defenses of our troops.”

Photo: Aris Messinis/AFP via Getty Images

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Who was ‘Da Vinci,’ legendary young commander killed near Bakhmut?

A young, bright Ukrainian who had a long life to live. Somebody who many perceived as “immortal” because the country’s future was hard to imagine without their dedication and patriotism. Somebody for whom thousands, both friends and strangers, would gather in central Kyiv to say final goodbye.

Photo: Sergei Supinsky/AFP via Getty Images

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The human cost of Russia’s war

Russian March 10 attacks on Kostiantynivka injure 8. Russian forces struck residential areas of Donetsk Oblast’s city of Kostiantynivka using S-300 missiles and Uragan multiple rocket launcher, the regional prosecutor’s office reported on March 10.

Governor: Russian attacks kill 2, injure 14 civilians in Donetsk Oblast over past day. Two people were killed in the village of Krasnohorivka on March 10, Donetsk Oblast Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko reported. According to the governor, 14 people were injured in Donetsk Oblast over the past day.

Governor: 2 killed, 5 injured in Russian attacks on Dnipropetrovsk Oblast. Russian troops hit two communities of the Nikopol district in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast with artillery on March 10, killing two people and wounding five more, reported Governor Serhii Lysak.

Mine explosion kills 2 civilians in Kherson Oblast. A car drove over a mine in the village of Ishchenka in Kherson Oblast, resulting in two deaths and two injuries, the Kherson Oblast military administration reported.

Russia shells Kherson, killing a man. Russian troops hit the Tavriiskyi district of Ukraine’s southern Kherson city with artillery on March 10, Kherson Oblast Military Administration reported. A 35-year-old man died on the spot from the injuries received in the attack, according to the administration.

General Staff: Russia has lost 156,990 troops in Ukraine since Feb. 24, 2022. According to the report, Russia has also lost 3,448 tanks, 6,742 armored fighting vehicles, 5,337 vehicles and fuel tanks, 2,475 artillery systems, 491 multiple launch rocket systems, 256 air defense systems, 304 airplanes, 289 helicopters, 2,107 drones, 18 boats.

Insights and opinions

Pavlo Kovtoniuk: Russian troops in Ukraine act as if international law does not exist.

Check out this op-ed by Ukraine’s former Deputy Health Minister Pavlo Kovtoniuk.

Photo: Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times

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International response

Norway announces delivery of more NASAMS air defense systems to Ukraine. The announcement came after a visit of Norwegian defense minister Bjørn Arild Gram to Kyiv on March 10, where he held talks with President Volodymyr Zelensky, Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov, and other top officials.

Sunak: UK, France to jointly train Ukrainian marines. The U.K. and France agreed to train Ukrainian marines, “helping to give Ukraine a decisive advantage on the battlefield and for Ukraine to win this war,” U.K. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said on March 10, as quoted by Sky News.

Canada bans imports of aluminum, steel from Russia. Canada’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Chrystia Freeland announced a ban on the import of Russian aluminum and steel products.

In other news

Belgian parliament officially recognizes Holodomor as genocide against Ukrainians. The Belgian parliament supported a resolution recognizing the Holodomor as a genocide against the Ukrainian people. The Holodomor, a man-made famine that took place between 1932-33, occurred during Joseph Stalin’s reign over the Soviet Union and caused an estimated 3.5 to 5 million Ukrainian deaths.

Moscow Patriarchate to leave all premises of Kyiv Pechersk Lavra. The Ukrainian government terminated the agreement with the Russian-controlled Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) on the free use of religious buildings located in the Lower Lavra, a part of Ukraine’s most significant Orthodox monastery. Earlier, Ukraine didn’t extend the UOC-MP’s lease of another part of the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra called the Upper Lavra.

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Today’s Ukraine Daily was brought to you by Oleksiy Sorokin, Kate Tsurkan, Francis Farrell, Dinara Khalilova, Anastasiya Gordiychuk.

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