While Russian troops in eastern Ukraine can report on progress, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy remains militant and wants Russia to be classified as a “terrorist state.” Political expert Markus Kaim explains how this requirement should be understood and whether a diplomatic solution seems possible:
+++ 10:10 Germany does not seem to supply light weapons +++ either
The German government has apparently reduced its military support to Ukraine to a minimum over the past nine weeks. So far, Chancellor Olaf Scholz has refused to supply tanks and armored personnel carriers, citing agreements with NATO allies. However, according to documents from Ukrainian government circles, which are available for “Welt am Sonntag”, Germany has hardly provided significant light weapons since the end of March. Between March 30 and May 26, only two deliveries arrived, both of which contained only small units. According to Ukraine, in mid-May Germany sent 3,000 anti-tank mines and 1,600 more special anti-tank mines. But the biggest problem facing the Ukrainian army at the moment is the superior Russian firepower in the east – which it can hardly counter with mines.
+++ 09:43 Video: How Ukrainian children play war in war +++
Six-year-old Valentin and twelve-year-old Andrii are experiencing the occupation of Kiev and have to hide in bunkers with their families. For the two boys, the war is a sad everyday life. Even when they play, it’s mostly about trenches, wooden rifles and fictitious shootings.
+++ 08:52 Head of Federal Network Agency: Germany’s gas storage not well stocked +++
In light of the Ukraine war, the president of the Federal Network Agency, Klaus Müller, is pushing for an increase in German natural gas supplies. Gas reserves in Germany are filling up “better than previous years” and are more full than they were in early May, Müller told Deutschlandfunk. However, they are “not yet well enough filled if we were to receive less or no more Russian gas in the short term”. Müller refers to the specifications of the new gas storage law. If Germany’s gas reserves were actually filled to 90 percent plus X, as planned, the country would have “a buffer for at least two and a half months, under stable conditions, with a normal winter,” the authority chief says. From his point of view, this would be “a very good precondition” for industry and consumers. “Of course it’s not that good,” Müller added. To “get through the next winter properly”, Germany would have to switch to natural gas suppliers other than Russia, Müller said. In addition, private households and industry need to use gas more sparingly and efficiently.
+++ 08:35 show at the Brandenburg Gate as a sign of war in Ukraine +++
A music show with video messages from politicians and celebrities will draw the world’s attention to the war in Ukraine in the evening (20.00) at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. Stars from Ukraine are also expected, including this year’s winners of the Eurovision Song Contest, Kalush Orchestra. In addition, video messages are planned from President Volodymyr Zelenskyi and international heads of government, including Chancellor Olaf Scholz. According to the Ukrainian Embassy, brothers Wladimir and Vitali Klitschko will be included in the show. The TV fundraising marathon is to take place simultaneously in Ukraine and be broadcast on television. There is free admission to the Brandenburg Gate. The donations will benefit medical equipment for hospitals in Ukraine.
+++ 07:33 Military expert Masala: “It works” for Putin +++
According to political scientist and military expert Carlo Masala, Russian President Vladimir Putin currently sees no reason to negotiate with Ukraine. Masala, a professor of international politics at the University of the German Armed Forces in Munich, says Putin will only start serious negotiations if he is to fear he will lose more than he will gain by continuing the war. But that is not the case at the moment. “He is doing well. So there is no incentive at all to get involved in these negotiations.” According to Masala, the recent military successes of the Russian armed forces in Donbass in eastern Ukraine can be traced back to two reasons: First, the Ukrainians lack heavy weapons. Second, the Russians had successfully changed their strategy.
Read more about this here.
+++ 06:58 Ukrainian military: fight for Sevierodonetsk continues +++
According to the Ukrainian military, fighting continues in the eastern Ukrainian city of Sieverodonetsk. Russian units continued their attack on the city territory on Saturday, the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces announced on Facebook this morning. “The fighting continues. Read more on the subject here.
+++ 06:20 study: war drives up food prices +++
People in Germany will probably have to pay significantly more for groceries in the coming months. “In Germany, food prices are likely to rise by more than 10 percent by 2022,” says retail expert Aurélien Duthoit of credit insurance company Allianz Trade, summarizing the results of a recent study. Converted, this corresponds to an average of 250 euros in additional costs per person per year. Despite recent price increases, retail food prices reflect far from the actual increase in food prices over the past 18 months. “The worst has not yet come for households,” warns Duthoit. According to the study, food and beverage producers have raised their prices in Germany by an average of 16.6 percent since the beginning of 2021. The supplements were strongest for everyday products, including oils and fats (plus 53 percent), flour (plus 28 percent) and pasta (plus 19 percent) – primarily driven by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
+++ 06:15 FDP warns in the negotiations for billions for the army to hurry +++
In the battle for the planned 100 billion special fund for the Bundeswehr, the FDP is pushing for momentum. “The special fund must be included in the constitution before the summer holidays, otherwise we will lose a lot of time,” says the FDP parliamentary group’s defense policy spokesman, Alexander Müller. Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced the special fund about three months ago – following Russia’s attack on Ukraine – in the Bundestag. As the Constitution needs to be amended for this purpose, the traffic light is dependent on the support of the EU Group. This Sunday evening, representatives of both sides want to continue their negotiations, it sounds from coalition circles. It was previously unclear whether a result would come or whether the negotiations would continue subsequently.
+++ 04:51 reports of dead and wounded in Russian attacks +++
According to authorities, several civilians were killed or wounded in attacks on Ukrainian sites. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy accuses Russia of “new terror”. In a video speech, he said it was “meaningless, barbaric attacks” with rockets and mortars. The Ukrainian army says it has repulsed Russian attacks. 33 “occupiers” were killed and six armored vehicles destroyed. The information is not independently verifiable. The city of Sevierodonetsk in the Donbass was fought particularly hard. According to Luhansk Governor Serhiy Hajdaj, the city is still under Ukrainian flag. He contradicted reports from Russia that Sevierodonetsk had been completely taken.
+++ 03:04 More than 350,000 Ukrainian refugees registered +++
According to a newspaper report, the German authorities registered a few days before the basic security law for Ukrainian refugees came into force 352,545 Ukrainian citizens and 12,371 third-country nationals with biometric data. The Federal Ministry of the Interior explains this in response to a request from “Bild am Sonntag”. According to the Federal Employment Agency, as of Friday, 44,000 Ukrainians have registered with job centers looking for work.
+++ 02:08 Zelensky: Ukraine will soon be technologically superior to Russia +++
According to President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Ukraine is approaching the point where it is technologically and aggressively superior to Russia. “Of course, much depends on our partners and their willingness to provide Ukraine with everything necessary to protect freedom,” he said in a video message. “I expect good news about it next week.” Selenskyj does not provide details. The situation in Donbass is complicated, he continues. The defenders held positions in several places, including Sieverodonetsk and Lysychansk.
+++ 01:24 Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger demands more commitment from FDP for Ukraine +++
FDP politician and former Justice Minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger urges her party to be “more energetic” on the dominant issue in the Ukraine war and, for example, to advertise louder for more arms deliveries. “It is not enough that Marie-Agnes Strack-Zimmermann is putting pressure on and fighting for more support.” Party leader Christian Lindner and the ministers should also get more involved and clarify the FDP’s position.
+++ 23:53 Selenskyj calls for the classification of Russia as a terrorist state +++
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has accused Russia of a terrorist policy. “I will continue to remind the world that Russia must finally be officially recognized as a terrorist state, as a sponsor of terrorism,” Zelenskyy said in a video speech. This reflects the daily reality that Russia has created with its war of aggression against Ukraine “and wants to lead it much further to Europe”. “And it must be legislated.” At the beginning of the week, he wanted to speak to the participants in the EU Special Summit in Brussels and then talk about it.
+++ 23:17 Ukraine insists on more rocket launchers +++
Ukraine calls on the West to supply advanced long-range multiple rocket launchers to fight Russia. “If the West really wants Ukraine to win, maybe it’s time to give us MLRS?” tweeted Mykhailo Podoliak, adviser to President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. MLRS are American-made artillery systems. They could fire projectiles up to 300 kilometers away, CNN reported on Thursday, citing several officials. The U.S. government is considering a supply of advanced multiple rocket launchers, it said.
+++ 22:21 Kyiv accuses Moscow exclusively of bottlenecks +++
Ukraine has again vehemently denied Russia that Western sanctions against Moscow are the cause of the current lack of food security in the world. “The only reason for shortages, rising prices and the threat of hunger is that the Russian military is physically blocking 22 million tonnes of Ukrainian food exports in our ports,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba stressed. Russian President Vladimir Putin had previously said that “the inadequate economic and financial policies of Western countries” and “anti-Russian sanctions” were to blame for the problems.
You can read previous developments in the Ukraine war here.