Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Ukraine war latest: Zelensky makes new plea for foreign aid

by Thaisa SemenovaOctober 25, 2022 11:51 pm
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Ukraine war latest: Zelensky makes new plea for foreign aidPresident of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, Prime Minister of Ukraine, Denys Shmyhal and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz leave the stage following a press conference, at an international conference of experts for reconstruction in Ukraine on Oct. 25, 2022 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Omer Messinger/Getty Images)

Key developments on Oct. 25:

  • Russia strikes Donetsk Oblast 15 times, killing 7 civilians, injuring 3 
  • Ukrainian forces repel Russian attacks near 10 settlements
  • UN reports 16,150 civilian casualties in Ukraine as a result of Russia’s war

President Volodymyr Zelensky on Oct. 25 asked the world leaders at the International Expert Conference on the Recovery, Reconstruction, and Modernization of Ukraine for financial assistance to cover the state budget deficit in 2023 which he expects would be $38 billion.

According to Zelensky, Russia has already destroyed over a third of Ukraine’s energy sector using missiles and Iranian-made drones. He said the attacks were aimed at making “it harder for us to endure this winter.” 

To help Ukraine respond to Russia’s mass attacks on the country’s critical infrastructure, Germany would allocate 20 million euros for reserve equipment, Ukraine’s Communities and Territories Development Minister Oleksii Chernyshov said on Oct. 25. 

The funds will be used to purchase equipment such as mobile generators, automatic water pumping stations, and mobile thermal power plants. 

At the conference, Zelensky also urged the leaders to create a platform to coordinate funding for Ukraine’s reconstruction that he called "financial Ramstein" – a reference to the Ramstein conferences for coordinating defense assistance for Ukraine, also known as the Defense Contact Group.

President said that Ukraine urgently needs $17 billion for reconstruction “literally to survive.”

“The weight of our Fast Recovery Plan is $17 billion for critical immediate reconstruction,” Zelensky said. “These are hospitals, schools, vital transport, and energy infrastructure.” 

According to Zelensky, Ukraine has not “received a single cent for the implementation” of the plan. 

Rolling blackouts

After Russia’s intensified attacks on Ukraine’s energy sector that started on Oct. 10, Ukraine started to put in place rolling blackouts. As of Oct. 25, they were implemented in all Ukrainian regions. In Kyiv, most locations lost power for several hours during the day. 

State-owned grid operator Ukrenergo said it would cut electricity supplies to businesses and households in all regions of Ukraine to stabilize the power system’s operation. 

The government urges residents to reduce their electricity usage between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. 

At the battlefield

The General Staff of Ukraine’s Armed Forces reported on Oct. 25 that Russian forces keep trying to conduct offensive actions in the Bakhmut and Avdiivka areas of Donetsk Oblast, shelling the Ukrainian positions along the contact line. 

Russian forces launched three missile strikes on Ukraine and carried out over 25 attacks with MLRS, the General Staff said.

The Ukrainian military reported it has repelled Russian attacks near 10 settlements, including Bakhmut, Bilohorivka, Verkhnokamianske, Ivanhrad, Klishchiivka, Spirne, Soledar, Marinka, and Nevelske in Donetsk Oblast, and Bilohorivka in Luhansk Oblast.

The Ukrainian forces have also reportedly struck 12 concentrations of Russian weapons and military equipment, two strongholds, and an anti-aircraft missile system.

In the Ukrainian south, Russian troops are preparing to defend the city of Kherson and are not fully withdrawing from the north of Kherson Oblast, the Institute for the Study of War said in its latest assessment

However, the Institute forecasts that the Armed Forces of Ukraine may liberate Russian-occupied areas on the right bank of the Dnipro River, including Kherson, by the end of 2022 as Russia’s positions there are “likely untenable.”

According to a Russian military blogger cited by the ISW, “Russia’s surrender even of Kherson city is overdue, as an attempt to hold the city will likely result in defeat.”

Russia withdraws from Kherson as Ukraine's counteroffensive advances, the southern military command said on Oct. 23. The command's spokeswoman Natalia Humeniuk said Russian troops are being relocated to the left bank of the Dnipro River as Ukrainian troops approach the regional capital.

Deputy Head of the President's Office Kyrylo Tymoshenko said that as of Oct. 21, Ukraine liberated 88 settlements in Kherson Oblast.

Casualties and attacks

The United Nations’ human rights agency reported that, as of Oct. 23, Russia’s war against Ukraine has killed at least 6,374 civilians and injured at least 9,776. The agency noted the actual figures are likely considerably higher.

On Oct. 25, Russian forces killed seven civilians and injured two in Bakhmut and wounded another one in Krasnohorivka in Donetsk Oblast, Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko reported.

The bodies of three more people killed by Russian troops during the occupation have been discovered in Drobysheve and Stavky, according to Kyrylenko. 

The National Police added that the Russian strikes on the oblast destroyed 19 residential buildings and one power line.

Late on Oct. 25, a Russian strike hit a gas station in Dnipro, killing at least two people, including a pregnant woman, according to local authorities. 

Russian forces also struck Dnipropetrovsk Oblast's Nikopol District with Grad multiple launch rocket systems, heavy artillery, and kamikaze drones. 

According to Dnipropetrovsk Oblast Governor Valentyn Reznichenko, private houses, cars, a food production enterprise, and water supply facilities were damaged. No casualties were reported.

During the past 24 hours, Russia also attacked Kharkiv Oblast, injuring one man and damaging an administrative building and a residential building, Kharkiv Oblast Governor Oleh Syniehubov said. 

Thaisa Semenova
Thaisa Semenova
National reporter

Thaisa Semenova is a national reporter at the Kyiv Independent. She worked as a staff writer for the Kyiv Post until November 2021.

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