As the war between Russia and Ukraine enters its 112th day, we take a look at key developments.
These are the most important events so far on Wednesday 15 June.
Download the latest update here.
- Ukrainian forces are finding it more difficult to stop Russian troops in the main eastern city of Severodonetsk, as Moscow’s army continues to shell the city with artillery, Luhansk’s governor said. He added that Russian troops control about 80 percent of Severodonetsk.
- Russia urged Ukrainian fighters hiding in the Severodonetsk Azot chemical plant to surrender.
- The Russian army said it will set up a humanitarian corridor on Wednesday to evacuate hundreds of civilians from the factory.
- Russian-backed separatists in Luhansk said Ukrainian troops have “held hostage” up to 1,200 civilians at the Azot chemical plant in Severodonetsk, Russia’s state-run TASS news agency said.
- Luhansk governor said there are still about 500 civilians in the Azot factory, including 40 children.
- Russia’s reliance on heavy artillery caused “extensive collateral damage” throughout Severodonetsk, the British Ministry of Defense said.
- Ukrainian troops are suffering painful losses in the battle against Russian forces in Severodonetsk and the Kharkiv region, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
- The route between the Donbas region of Ukraine and the Russian-annexed area of Crimea through the occupied regions of Mariupol, Melitopol and Kherson is now open to civilian vehicles, TASS reported.
- Zelenskyy urged the West to send more modern anti-missile defense systems.
- US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will lead a meeting in Brussels on Wednesday with defense ministers from NATO and other countries to discuss arms supplies to Ukraine.
- The Polish prime minister criticized NATO’s support for Ukraine, which has repeatedly called for more and heavier weapons.
- The Congress of Nicaragua renewed a 10-year decree allowing Russian troops to enter Nicaragua between July 1 and December 31 to patrol the Pacific with the Nicaraguan military, a decision the US has criticized.
- Moscow banned dozens of British journalists, media representatives and defense figures from entering the country, Russia’s foreign ministry said.
- The Kremlin said Russia would be willing to consider an appeal from the UK over the fate of two Britons sentenced to death for fighting for Ukraine. Moroccans have called for the release of a Moroccan-Ukrainian who has also been sentenced to death, while the government remains silent.
- Pope Francis made new comments about the war in Ukraine, praising “brave” Ukrainians for their struggle for survival, but also suggesting that the situation “may have been provoked in some way or not prevented”.
The human price of war
- Nearly two-thirds of children in Ukraine were uprooted during the war, a UN official said, calling the war a “child rights crisis.”
- UNICEF’s Europe and Central Asia director said 277 children in Ukraine have been killed and 456 injured, schools damaged are likely in the thousands and only about 25 percent of schools in Ukraine are operational.
- Ukraine said 313 children were killed and 579 injured during the war.
- European countries imported 40 percent more coal from South Africa’s main export hub in the first five months of this year than in all of 2021, as a way to secure alternatives to Russian coal, Reuters news agency reported.
- UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres accused some rich countries of taking a dangerous flight to fossil fuels in response to the war in Ukraine, warning that the new investments in coal, oil and gas are “delusional” given their impact on climate change .
- The Russian invasion of Ukraine will cause a global wheat shortage for at least three seasons by keeping much of Ukraine’s crop off the market, pushing prices to record levels, Kiev’s agriculture minister said.
- Few of the global financial elite will attend Russia’s annual economic forum in St. Petersburg, where the country has been isolated by sanctions over its war in Ukraine. President Vladimir Putin will deliver a speech on Friday in Davos, Russia, focusing on the international economic situation.