Good morning, Kyiv Post readers. Here’s your Morning Memo for June 1 to get you up to speed on events in Ukraine:
· Top Headlines
· Military Situation Report (Day 463)
· President Zelensky’s Message of the Day
· FYI Kyiv Locals
· Quotable Quote
Two children and an adult were killed by a Russian attack on Kyiv at around 3:00 a.m. today – which is International Childrens Day. “The first day of summer. Children's Day. And the ruscists launch another attack on the capital and kill again! They kill Ukrainian children,” said Serhiy Popko, Head of the Kyiv City Military Administration.
On the day Ukraine commemorates world Child Day, Russian missiles kill 2 children in a Kyiv hospital. One adult dead. We are all sad, angry and sleep-deprived. #RussiaisaTerroristState#WarCriminals https://t.co/WxXQCTQM5J— Kateryna Yushchenko 🌻 🇺🇦 (@KatyaYushchenko) June 1, 2023
Drones struck two oil refineries in southern Russia. Authorities in Russia’s Krasnodar region said the Ilyinsky oil refinery was largely unaffected, but a blaze engulfed the Afipsky refinery. While Ukraine denies involvement, military analysts have described such assaults as part “shaping operations” that set the stage for a wider counteroffensive by Kyiv’s forces.
Ukrainian-operated HIMARS has destroyed part of one of Russia's most advanced anti-aircraft missile systems, according to reports on social media. A HIMARS, or High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, struck a 55K6E mobile command post, which forms part of Russia's S-400 long-range surface-to-air missile system, posts and images posted online suggest.
Valeriy Zaluzhny, Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, had a phone call with General Mark Milley, Chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff. "I have informed General Milley about Russian massive attacks with cruise and ballistic missiles, combat drones and guided aerial bombs. It is important to work on strengthening the air defense of Ukraine with additional air defense systems and F-16 fighter aircraft. We have agreed to keep in touch," Zaluzhny said on Telegram.
A further $300 million in military aid to Ukraine was announced by the US. The successive package includes Patriot munitions and other air defense equipment, more artillery and tank shells, and other equipment including mine clearing systems. The US has committed $18.7 billion in military equipment to Kyiv from existing stocks and ordered almost $6 billion in new supplies. In total, the US has provided Ukraine more than $37.6 billion in security assistance since Russia’s invasion.
Germany said that international law allows Ukraine to launch attacks on the territory of Russia as a measure of self-defense. Berlin, however, does not want Ukraine to use German weapons for such attacks.
Meanwhile, John Kirby, Coordinator for Strategic Communications of the White House National Security Council, said the US “has been very clear to the Ukrainians both privately and publicly” that it does not support attacks inside Russia and does not want them to be carried out using American weapons.
Emmanuel Macron, President of France, has for the first time called for Ukraine to be granted a NATO membership “path” at the upcoming NATO Summit in Vilnius.
More than 1000 Ukrainian medical facilities have come under Russian attack, according to a new report by the World Health Organization. It is the highest number WHO has ever recorded in any humanitarian emergency.
Through a new Congressional resolution, US Senators Ben Cardin (D-Maryland) and Tim Kaine (D-Virginia) called for the US to support “the creation of a special international criminal tribunal to hold accountable the leaders of the Russian Federation who led and sanctioned aggression in Ukraine.”
The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine has ordered 300 additional medium-range reconnaissance Vector drones for the Armed Forces of Ukraine from a German company.
Military Situation Report
The May 31 campaign assessment from the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) had the following key take-aways:
· The Russian military command has likely ordered Chechen Republic Head Ramzan Kadyrov’s forces to begin offensive operations in Ukraine following the withdrawal of Wagner Group forces from Bakhmut.
· The claimed return of Chechen forces to offensive operations would break Kadyrovites from a nearly yearlong hiatus from participating in high-intensity combat operations.
· Russian forces conducted ground attacks northwest of Svatove and south of Kreminna.
· Russian forces conducted limited ground attacks around Bakhmut and along the Avdiivka-Donetsk City line.
· Russian forces continue to concentrate in southern Ukraine.
· The Russian State Duma appears to be considering measures to legalize the military recruitment of current or formerly incarcerated Russian men.
The update at 06:00 on June 1 (Day 463) for the last 24 hours from the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reports:
· 32 Russian air raids, including 10 Iskander missiles from S-400 systems launched at Kyiv – all of which were destroyed;
· 49 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) attacks;
· 21 firefights;
· Russian artillery, rocket, mortar and/or airborne fire in the following regions: Kharkiv (25); Chernihiv (four), Sumy (nine); Luhansk (three); Donetsk (49); Zaporizhzhia (nine), and Kherson (nine), and;
· Ukrainian air forces undertook 15 raids against Russian positions.
· Russian forces continue to convert the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant into a military facility.
· At least 5 civilians were killed and 30 injured by Russian assaults across Kyiv, Donetsk and Kherson regions.
President Zelensky’s Message
“I held a special and lengthy meeting in Odesa on the security and social situation in the region. The regional leadership, military, law enforcers... The region is a priority from all points of view.
“It is Odesa region that is one of the pillars of security for our entire south, and therefore for the state. The Security Service of Ukraine has achieved very important results in Odesa region in countering Russian saboteurs.” – Volodymyr Zelensky
FYI Kyiv Locals
During June, free classes in marketing are being offered to women in Kyiv through ‘Projector’ Creative & Tech Online Institute.
"Our children have the right to be adopted and have the right to be transferred to foster families. This process of return is a huge task before us. Because it is not only a matter of taking the children back - they have to be returned and adapted so that they children can live on their native land." - Iryna Vereshchuk, Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister, on the 4,500 Ukrainian children who have been forcibly deported to Russia and are now categorized as orphans.
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