Ukraine-Russia live news: Kyiv calls for anti-missile systems | News

  • Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy says his forces are suffering painful losses in the eastern town of Severodonetsk and the Kharkiv region as he called for more anti-missile systems.
  • Russian forces are now in control of 80 percent of Severodonetsk, the Luhansk governor discloses.
  • Russia urges Ukrainian fighters sheltering in the Severodonetsk Azot chemical plant to surrender on Wednesday.
  • The Russian army claims it will establish a humanitarian corridor to evacuate hundreds of civilians from the plant.
  • NATO must strengthen its readiness and have a more robust, combat-ready posture along its eastern border in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg declares.

Here are the latest updates:

European official concerned about Russia flying Western-made airplanes

Europe’s top aviation safety regulator has said he is “very worried” about the safety of Western-made aircraft continuing to fly in Russia without access to spare parts and proper maintenance.

The European Union and the United States have moved to restrict Russia’s access to spare parts following its invasion of Ukraine.

“This is very unsafe,” Patrick Ky, executive director of the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), told reporters on the sidelines of a conference, adding that regulators do not have good data on many of the planes flying in Russia.

Jailed Kremlin critic Navalny moved to unknown location: Allies

Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny has been abruptly transferred from a prison where he was serving his sentence to an undisclosed location, according to his allies.

When his lawyer arrived at Correctional Colony No 2, a prison camp in Pokrov, 119km (74 miles) east of Moscow, he was told, “There is no such convict here,” according to Navalny’s chief of staff Leonid Volkov said on Telegram on Tuesday.

“Where Alexey is now, and which colony he is being taken to, we don’t know,” Volkov said in a statement on Telegram.

Just last month, Navalny lambasted Putin via video link in a Russian court, saying the Kremlin chief started a “stupid war” that was butchering the innocent people of both Ukraine and Russia.

Read more here.

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny appears on a video link from prison provided by the Russian Federal Penitentiary Service at Moscow City Court, Tuesday, May 24, 2022
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny appears on a video link from prison provided by the Russian Federal Penitentiary Service at Moscow City Court, Tuesday, May 24, 2022 [Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP]

Russian troops control 80% of Severodonetsk: Governor

Russian troops control about 80 percent of the fiercely contested eastern city of Severodonetsk, the governor of Luhansk has said.

Serhiy Haidai acknowledged on Tuesday that a mass evacuation of civilians from Severodonetsk now was “simply not possible” due to the relentless shelling and fighting. He said about 500 civilians were still sheltering in the Azot chemical plant.

Ukrainian forces have been pushed to the industrial outskirts of the city because of “the scorched earth method and heavy artillery the Russians are using,” he said.

“There is still an opportunity for the evacuation of the wounded, communication with the Ukrainian military and local residents,” he told The Associated Press news agency by telephone, adding that Russian soldiers had not yet completely blocked off the strategic city.

Ukraine suffering painful losses in Severodonetsk, Kharkiv: Zelenskyy

Ukrainian forces are suffering painful losses in fighting Russian troops in the eastern city of Severodonetsk and the Kharkiv region, Zelenskyy has said.

Ukraine said its forces were still trying to evacuate civilians from Severodonetsk after Russia destroyed the last bridge to the city, the latest stage in a weeks-long battle in the Donbas region that Moscow seeks to capture.

Both sides claim to have inflicted huge casualties in the fighting over the city, Russia’s principal battleground focus.

About 12,000 people remain in Severodonetsk, from a pre-war population of 100,000, according to the regional governor.

NATO must strengthen readiness, chief says

NATO must build out “even higher readiness” and strengthen its weapons capabilities along its eastern border in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the military alliance’s chief has said.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg was speaking after informal talks in the Netherlands on Tuesday with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and the leaders of Denmark, Poland, Latvia, Romania, Portugal and Belgium ahead of a wider NATO summit in Madrid at the end of the month.

“In Madrid, we will agree a major strengthening of our posture,” he said. “Tonight we discussed the need for more robust and combat-ready forward presence and an even higher readiness and more pre-positioned equipment and supplies.”

Asked about Sweden and Finland’s applications to join the alliance, Stoltenberg said he was seeking “a united way forward” to resolve opposition from Turkey, which has been angered by what it deems as Swedish support of Kurdish activists.

Ukraine needs more anti-missile systems: Zelenskyy

Zelenskyy has again called on the West to send his forces “more modern anti-missile systems”.

“Our country does not have it at a sufficient level yet, but it is our country in Europe that needs such weapons most right now,” Zelenskyy said, adding that Ukraine only managed to shoot down some missiles before the Lviv and Ternopil regions were hit on Tuesday.

Delay with provision of these weapons cannot be justified, he said.

Ukraine’s deputy defence minister, Anna Malyar, said on Tuesday that Kyiv had received just 10 percent of the weapons it requested.

Biden: Temporary silo plan to get Ukraine grain out

US President Joe Biden says he is working closely with European Union partners to build temporary silos along the Ukraine border and some in Poland to get much-needed grain out.

Biden made the announcement during a speech in Philadelphia.

Russia urges Ukrainian fighters at Azot plant to surrender

Russia’s defence ministry has said it offered Ukrainian fighters sheltering in the Azot chemical plant in the eastern Ukrainian town of Severodonetsk the chance to surrender on June 15.

Russia said on Tuesday it would open a humanitarian corridor on Wednesday to allow civilians to leave the plant, and urged Ukrainian fighters to “stop their senseless resistance and lay down their arms” at the same time.

Read more here.

You can read all updates from Tuesday, June 14, here.