War in Ukraine: what to remember from Wednesday, May 31

A night bombardment on a poultry farm in the occupied region of Luhansk in eastern Ukraine killed at least five people and injured 19, Russian authorities said on Wednesday (May 31st). They accused “Ukrainian armed groups” to be at the origin of this bombardment. At the same time, the Russian authorities claimed to have begun the evacuation of children from localities bordering Ukraine, which had been bombed for several days. Here’s what to remember from this day on the the war in Ukraine.

Children evacuated from border areas of Ukraine

Russia has begun evacuating children from localities bordering Ukraine, which have been heavily bombed for several days.

Attacks have been mounting on Russian soil for weeks, culminating in an unprecedented drone assault on Moscow on Tuesday and a spectacular armed incursion last week into the Belgorod region bordering Ukraine. On Wednesday, the governor announced the start of the evacuation of children from two localities in the region, which came under heavy artillery and mortar fire.

“We are very concerned about this situation. The bombardment of civilian targets continues” in Belgorod, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

Russian military claims to have destroyed ‘last’ Ukrainian warship

On Wednesday, Russia claimed responsibility for the destruction in Odessa of a landing ship, the “Yuri Olefirenko”, presented by Moscow as the “last” Warship of the Ukrainian Navy still operational. The “Yuri Olefirenko” is a ship allowing the landing of troops. Formerly known as “Kirovograd”, it was renamed in 2016 in honor of a Ukrainian officer killed in 2015 near the town of Mariupol. The ship was also used in 2014 to evacuate Ukrainian military personnel after Russia annexed Crimea.

kyiv regrets European restrictions on its cereals

Ukraine said on Wednesday it regretted the restrictions imposed by five European Union countries on its grain exports. These restrictions were imposed by five Eastern European states, including Poland, to protect local farmers from an influx of Ukrainian grain that has driven prices down.

The European Commissioner for Agriculture, Janusz Wojciechowski, ruled on Tuesday that it was necessary to extend “at least” until the end of October these restrictions on cereals from Ukraine. “Keeping restrictions is tantamount to giving more weapons to (Vladimir) Putin against the unity of Europe”lamented the Ukrainian Ministry of Agriculture on Twitter. “Current restrictions must be lifted”he pleaded.

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The restrictions are contested by 12 EU states, including France and Germany, which recently expressed their “serious concerns” So “differential treatment within the internal market”.

Security guarantees demanded for Ukraine from NATO

On Wednesday, Emmanuel Macron called for the granting of security guarantees “tangible and credible” to Ukraine, pending its accession to NATO. “If we want (..) to weigh against Russia, if we want to be credible vis-à-vis the Ukrainians, we must give Ukraine the means to prevent any new aggression (Russian) and include it in (a) credible security architecture”said the Head of State at the Globsec forum in Bratislava (Slovakia). According to him, Ukraine “today protect Europe”and she is “equipped with so many armaments” it’s in the western interest “that it has credible security guarantees with us in a multilateral framework”.

A new military aid of 300 million dollars

The United States has released a new tranche of military aid to Ukraine for an amount of 300 million dollars, announced the Pentagon in a press release on Wednesday. This aid includes, in particular, missiles for the Patriot air defense systems. The US Department of Defense said it would immediately provide, from its stocks, additional ammunition for the Patriots already in Kiev’s possession, as well as for the Himars artillery systems.

Kiev will also receive in the short term Avenger and Stinger short-range anti-aircraft systems, shells for its artillery and tanks, as well as millions of bullets and various ammunition for its soldiers. Washington has warned that American weapons should not be used to strike Russia. “We have been very clear with the Ukrainians privately, and we have been publicly, we do not condone the attacks in Russia”White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters.

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