Overview:

  • On eve of EC report release, Zelensky says it will be an “historic” one
  • Hilarious video of Russian soldier caught with pants down, literally, by drone camera
  • AFU troops advance near Bakhmut
  • Russia “creepingly,” slowly, gains a grip around Avdiivka
  • US President’s cabinet asks Congress for $11.8 billion for Ukraine’s fight for freedom
  • After first armored vehicle crossing, Ukraine continues to reinforce left bank of Dnipro

Zelensky predicts that Ukraine will join the EU, in run-up to commission’s report

The night before the planned release of the European Commission (EC) report on proposed new member states, President Volodymyr Zelensky vowed on Tuesday that Ukraine would join the European Union.

“Tomorrow is an important day. We are expecting the EU’s historic conclusion,” Zelensky said in his evening address. “Ukraine has already come a long way in its rapprochement with the European Union.”  

The EC is slated to present its report on Wednesday on the progress made by the nations of Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine on various criteria, and whether to begin discussions about their joining the 27-member union, before an EU summit that will discuss the nominations in Belgium next month.

Among the benchmarks set by the commission for Ukraine, when it was given candidate status in 2022, is its commitment to fighting corruption.

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Biden administration signs letter pushing $11.8 billion package for Ukraine

Several cabinet members of US President Joe Biden’s administration have signed a letter urging legislators to appropriate $11.8 billion in aid to Ukraine.

The figure is “the minimum amount needed to help cover Ukraine’s baseline needs, after accounting for other possible international support,” the letter to Congress reads. The letter was signed by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and USAID Administrator Samantha Power.

Before the chaos in the lower house to find a new leader resulted in the victory of right-wing factions close to former president Donald Trump and against additional spending to Ukraine, the figure proposed by the administration for Kyiv was about $60 billion.

US Chamber of Commerce Hosts Ukraine Partnership Forum
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US Chamber of Commerce Hosts Ukraine Partnership Forum

The Forum sought to harness US public-private sector support for Ukraine’s recovery

Drone video captures Russian soldier in a private moment, “planting a mine,” so to speak

A video released by a Ukrainian Armed Forces (AFU) drone operator caught a Russian soldier, well, doing his duty, as it were, in a moment of presumed privacy. The video post described the soldier with his pants around his thighs, in a trench, as a “mine planter.”

“Bombers from the Code 9.2 air reconnaissance unit of the 92nd Mechanized Brigade caught a serviceman of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation at an unexpected moment and liquidated him for trespassing on our land,” the post read.

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Operations: Dnipro River

As reported in Kyiv Post on Tuesday, Ukraine’s armored vehicles, for the first time since the area’s occupation, have crossed the Dnipro River thanks to a growing bridgehead on the river’s left bank: “Drone images of a single Ukrainian BTR-4 armored personnel carrier being ferried across the river aboard a Soviet-era amphibious transport were reportedly captured on Monday or Tuesday near the east bank village of Krynky.”

On Tuesday, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) cited footage “purporting to show a destroyed Western amphibious armored personnel carrier in an unspecified location on the east bank.” Certain Russian bloggers claimed that one or two such vehicles crossed the Dnipro near Krynky, while others said that Ukrainian forces transferred several unspecified armored vehicles to the area. Russian bloggers claimed that “more than 300 Ukrainian personnel (about a battalion’s worth) are operating on the east bank in the Krynky area and continue to claim that Ukrainian forces maintain positions in central Krynky and nearby areas,” the ISW analysts said.

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Operations: Bakhmut

Ukrainian forces continued reportedly chalked up gains near Bakhmut on Tuesday, with a Russian military blogger claiming that AFU units crossed a contested railway near Andriivka (10 km southwest of Bakhmut). Of course, the Russian Ministry of Defense countered on Tuesday that Ukrainian forces “unsuccessfully” attacked near Rozdolivka (18 km north of Bakhmut), Minkivka (15 km northwest of Bakhmut), and Klishchiivka (7 km southwest of Bakhmut). Another Russian milblogger claimed that “there are positional battles in the Soledar direction north of Bakhmut,” the ISW wrote.

Operations: Avdiivka

Moscow’s forces have changed tactics to a “creeping offensive” around Avdiivka, the ISW quoted a Russian military blogger as saying, but nonetheless made reported gains in the area, following a massive onslaught over the past few days.

As reported earlier in Kyiv Post, observers and analysts expect this relative lull in the fighting may indicate a calm before the storm in this critical Ukrainian stronghold in the occupied Donetsk region.

Russian sources claimed on Monday and Tuesday that Russian forces “marginally advanced” along the railway line near Stepove (3 km northwest of Avdiivka). Additional on-the-ground Russian reports on Tuesday indicated that Moscow’s troops advanced near Sjeverne (6 km west of Avdiivka) but did not enter the settlement itself. Many bloggers now contest that Russia controls the famous Terrikon “slag heap” north of Avdiivka, but that “Ukrainian artillery is preventing Russian forces from consolidating their positions there,” the ISW reported.

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