Once a day, NU.nl gives you an overview of the situation in Ukraine. This time: Russian troops have bombed schools, women’s rights organizations are seeing an increase in demand for abortion pills, and the EU is coming in with another half a billion heavy weapons.
Russian troops shelled schools in Ukraine’s Chernihiv region overnight from Thursday to Friday. President Volodymyr Zelensky made the announcement in a video address.
“Of course, the Russian state thinks that any kind of education will only get in the way. But what do you gain by destroying Ukrainian schools? All Russian commanders who issue such orders are just plain sick.”
A refinery in the industrial center of Kremenchuk was also attacked, as were the regions of Zaporizhzhia and the Donets basin.
Kremenchuk hard hit, Ukraine refuses to give up Snake Island
The Ukrainian city of Kremenchuk, a major industrial center in the center of the country, was hit on Thursday by the worst rocket attack since the start of the Russian invasion. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks in his usual speech of an “unnecessary attack”, which included an oil refinery hit.
According to the region’s governor, Ukraine’s UNIAN news agency reports that no injuries were reported in the attack. At least twelve Russian missiles reportedly hit various targets. The refinery in particular came under fire.
Moreover, Ukraine has no intention of ceding the strategically located Snake Island to the Russian military. Intelligence chief Kirilo Budanov said on Friday he would continue to fight for the island “as long as necessary”.
The island became widely known on the first day of the war when Ukrainian soldiers informed the Russian Navy that they refused to leave the island. “Russian warship, put on your clothes,” they said to the navy ship Moskva, which was later sunk, according to Ukraine, following a missile attack.
Passers-by walk past the remains of a rocket that sank into the road surface in Luhansk, eastern Ukraine.
Growing demand for abortion pills in Ukraine and Poland
Women’s rights groups have seen an increase in demand for abortion pills since war broke out in Ukraine. Deliveries are currently underway to that country and to neighboring Poland, which hosts more than three million refugees. The objective: to allow safe abortions for Ukrainian women who have become pregnant while fleeing the war.
At least 25 Ukrainian women were raped by Russian soldiers in Bucha. Ukrainian ombudsman Lyudmila Denisova reported this to the BBC† Nine of these women, the youngest of whom was only fourteen, became pregnant. The number of similar cases of sexual violence in Ukraine is still under investigation.
At Women on Web, they saw an increase in requests for abortion pills after the Bucha drama, director Venny Ala-Siurua told NU.nl.
EU supports Ukraine with another half billion euros for heavy weapons
The European Union has donated an additional half a billion euros to the fund that EU countries can use to buy arms and military equipment from Ukraine.
The money is intended to be used for heavy weapons for Ukraine, EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell said. The total amount of the fund now stands at 2 billion euros for this year.
According to Borrell, what the West must do to stop the Russians in Ukraine is clear. “More of the same: more support for Ukraine, including military support,” he said in Germany, where he is attending the G7 summit.
Ukrainian man and dog from Mariupol travel 225 kilometers to a safe zone
A Ukrainian man and his dog escaped by traveling 225 kilometers from the war zone to Zaporizhzhia. What makes the trip even more special is that the man left heavily besieged Mariupol, writes The Guardian Friday.
Pedin, 61, made the decision to leave on April 20 and started walking three days later. By then, Mariupol had been shelled for two months and encircled for almost the same amount of time. “But I left because the Russians approached my house and executed people during searches,” he said.
The Ukrainian managed to escape from the town avoiding other Russian soldiers who were distributing food and water to the townspeople.
The journey that man made from Mariupol to Zaporizhzhia.
Entry ban for 13 foreign journalists, including a Dutch one
Since the start of the war in Ukraine, the country’s secret service has imposed a travel ban on a total of 13 foreign journalists. They are also believed to have been expelled from the country.
One of the journalists expelled from the country was the Dutch journalist Robert Dulmers, who worked there for the Dutch daily† He posted photos of a rocket impact on an oil storage facility in the port city of Odessa shortly after the event. Dulmers will therefore no longer be allowed to come to Ukraine for the next ten years.
Shortly after the Russian invasion, the Ukrainian authorities established strict rules for the publication of targets that were bombed by the Russians. Ukrainian army positions are also not allowed to be flagged under martial law. Journalists who break the rules can be charged with espionage.