Ukraine WAR BULLETIN

March 15, 2022       7:30PM

Doctors and patients were taken hostages by Russian invaders in Mariupol.

In the city of Rubizhne (Luhansk region) Russian forces destroyed: an institution for visually impaired children “Kryshtalyk”, three schools, and a Multidisciplinary Hospital. 

Last night the Russian occupiers carried out a series of shellings in Kharkiv and its suburbs. Three high-rise buildings, two private houses, yards, markets, parks, a hospital and a kindergarten were hit.

On 15th March Prime Ministers of Poland, Czech Republic and Slovenia, the Deputy Prime Minister of Poland for Security, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, and the European Commissioner for the Environment visited Ukraine

 

WAR ROOM

 

General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

The twentieth day of the heroic resistance of the Ukrainian people to the Russian military invasion continues.

Russians are stopped. Failure to achieve the goal in a timely manner incurs losses in manpower and equipment.

Boldly ignoring the norms of international humanitarian law, Russian invaders are launching missile and bomb attacks on the critical infrastructure of Ukraine, civilians, residential areas, schools, and kindergartens. Ukrainian authorities have undisputable evidence of Russian military to be directly involved in: holding civilians’ hostage, robbing the local population, and looting.

The Armed Forces of Ukraine are fulfilling their tasks of repelling armed aggression against Ukraine. 

Fighting continues for the liberation of the outskirts of Mariupol. Soldiers of the Azov Regiment defeated one of the units of the 22nd Special Brigade of Russian Armed Forces.

In the Luhansk region, during the day, the defenders of Ukraine destroyed five MLRS BM-21 "Hrad", three T-72 tanks, one APC-3, and killed in action more than 15 enemy soldiers. Additional data are to be clarified.

Measures are being taken to cover the state border of Ukraine and the sea coast.

In total, as of March 15, 2022, the enemy has lost (completely destroyed or lost combat capability) of up to 40% of the units involved in the so-called "Operation" on the territory of Ukraine. 

he twentieth day of the heroic opposition of the Ukrainian people to the Russian military invasion is coming to an end.

An offensive operation against Ukraine continues. The enemy has not fulfilled the tasks of defeating the groups of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, reaching the administrative borders of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, and other tasks. At the same time, occupiers are stopped in the Nikolaev direction.

The enemy is trying to strengthen the grouping of troops by additionally transferring to the territory of Ukraine battalion tactical groups formed of consolidated units that suffered losses during the first ten days of the operation, military mercenaries from among foreign nationals. In addition, according to available information, the Russian military leadership has decided to release early cadets of higher military educational institutions in the Russian Federation with their subsequent involvement in hostilities against Ukraine.

In the Volyn direction, the enemy's actions have not changed, the main efforts are focused on strengthening the protection of the Ukrainian-Belarusian border. Units of the 120th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade (MINSK) of the North-Western Operational Command of the Armed Forces of the Republic of Belarus were transferred to the border areas with Ukraine.

The enemy did not conduct active offensive operations in the Polissya direction. Having suffered losses, the enemy, in violation of the norms of International Humanitarian Law, carries out chaotic mining of the area, creating dangerous living conditions for the civilian population of Ukraine. Along with this, the enemy regrouped, restoring the combat capability of the units defeated in previous battles. As a result of the effective actions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the enemy suffers significant losses in manpower and equipment.

In the northern direction, the enemy concentrated its efforts during the day on reconnaissance. He has problems with providing troops with ammunition.

In the Slobozhansky direction, the enemy is trying to strengthen the existing group by concentrating reserves near the state border, blocking access to the city of Sumy from the south, and blocking the city of Izyum. He has no success.

In Donetsk's direction, the enemy made an unsuccessful attempt to advance in the directions of the settlements of Rubizhne, Severodonetsk, Lysychansk, as a result of which the occupiers suffered significant losses and were forced to retreat. In the area of ​​Popasna, the enemy tries to keep the occupied position. Has no success in the area of ​​Avdiivka.

The worst situation remains in the Mariupol area, where the enemy is trying to block the city on the western and eastern outskirts of the city. Has significant losses, forced to introduce reserves from the 810th Separate Marine Brigade.

In the South Buz direction, the enemy concentrated its efforts on maintaining the occupied frontiers and improving the engineering equipment of the existing positions. He does not abandon the idea of ​​continuing the offensive in the direction of Kryvyi Rih. As a result of the effective work of units of the Defense Forces of Ukraine in the area of ​​Chornobaivka, the enemy lost seven combat helicopters.

In general, as of March 15, 2022, the enemy lost (destroyed completely, or lost combat capability) up to 40% of units involved in the so-called. "Operations" on the territory of Ukraine.

 

Commissioner for Human Rights in Ukraine

As of 10 a.m. CET on March 15, 2022, according to the Unified Register of Pre-Trial Investigations, as well as other sources that need confirmation, 97 children have died and more than 100 children have been injured since the Russian invasion of Ukraine began.

The actual number of dead and wounded children cannot be determined due to the inability to inspect the scene and the active hostilities of the occupying forces in Ukrainian cities.

Yesterday, Russian troops carried out artillery shelling of a kindergarten in Chuguev. A 15-year-old boy was killed.

In the city of Rubizhne (Luhansk region) Russian forces destroyed: an institution for visually impaired children “Kryshtalyk”, three schools, and a Multidisciplinary Hospital. Four people were killed in the shelling.

Such actions by the armed forces of the Russian Federation continue to grossly violate the fundamental rights of children - the right to life and health, guaranteed by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.

“I call on the international community and international human rights organizations to help end the military attack on the Russian Federation.” – stressed Denisova.

 (https://bit.ly/3q6lCxu)

 

Russian military terrorists kill children and unarmed Ukrainians on the streets of temporarily occupied settlements.

In the village of Mokhnatyn, near Chernihiv, Russians shot three local teenagers with machine gun from armored vehicle. Two of died boys were at the age of 17, one - 19. 17-years victims were twin brothers. The third, a 19-year-old boy, had his leg torn off and died.

In the village of Velyka Dymerka, Brovary district, Kyiv region, racist soldiers opened fire on civilians at a public transport stop - a woman was killed and a man was injured. They also opened fire on the homes of civilians, killing a man.

In the village of Zavorychi in the Kyiv region, two men were fatally injured and a woman was wounded by shrapnel.

In Bucha, the Russian military fired on residential buildings. A 65-year-old civilian was killed in the village of Vorzel in the Bucha district, and a 75-year-old woman and a man died of their wounds in Irpen.

Deliberate killing of civilians is a crime against humanity and a war crime as defined by the Statute of the International Military Tribunal and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, and a violation of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War.

These crimes cannot go unpunished and must be taken into account by the UN International Court of Justice as evidence in the case of Ukraine v. Russia on genocide charges.

“I appeal to the UN member states to speed up the establishment of a Special Tribunal to punish the crime of aggression against Ukraine.” stressed the Commissioner.

Russians criminals must sit on the dock of the Nuremberg tribunal!

(https://bit.ly/3qazsiC)

 

Head of Donetsk Region Administration

Doctors and patients were taken hostages by Russian invaders in Mariupol.

One of the hospital employees managed to pass the information about it.

Quote:

"It is impossible to get out of the hospital. There is a heavy shooting, we sit in the basement. Vehicles have not been able to drive to the hospital for two days. High-rise buildings are burning around… Russians forced 400 people from neighbouring houses to come to our hospital. We can't leave."

This is Mariupol's Regional Intensive Care Hospital. The other day, Russian invaders practically destroyed it - the floor slabs fell in the main building from the bombing. But hospital staff and patients continued to be in the basement adapted for work of doctors and treatment of patients.

The destruction was not enough for Russian fascists, they made hostages out of doctors and patients.

“I appeal to international human rights organizations to respond to these vicious violations of the norms and customs of war, to these blatant crimes against humanity.” stressed the Head of Donetsk Region Administration.

(https://bit.ly/3MSNqzd)

 

Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine

As a result of missile strike in Kyiv, a sixteen-floor residential building was significantly destroyed - followed by fires from the 1st to the 16th floor. The bodies of two people were found at the scene; 27 people were rescued.

(https://bit.ly/3KO5fxo)

 

National Police of Ukraine

Last night the Russian occupiers carried out a series of shelling’s in Kharkiv and its suburbs.

Three high-rise buildings, two private houses, yards, markets, parks, a hospital and a kindergarten were hit. A 16-year-old boy died during the shelling in Chuguev. The total number of victims is being established. The evidence is carefully collected at the scene and is documented for future database of crimes of Russian forces.

(https://bit.ly/3tdu3cw)

 

POLICY

 

President of Ukraine

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy took part in a meeting of representatives of the member states of the Joint Expeditionary Force chaired by Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Boris Johnson in the format of a video conference. During the event, the President of Ukraine presented his vision of how to stop Russian aggression and ensure lasting peace on the European continent.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy emphasized that the world needs new security guarantees, as the old ones have proved their ineffectiveness.

“The Russian invasion of Ukraine destroyed everything that security in our region, and I am sure international security, was based on. The weight of the organizations we all hoped for. The force of international conventions. It has also called into question the world's most powerful alliance, NATO,” stressed the President of Ukraine.

According to Zelenskyy, NATO has not yet plucked courage to close Ukrainian sky for Russian missiles and planes. Russian troops continue to bomb peaceful Ukrainian cities and kill people, blow up houses, hospitals and schools.

Therefore, as the Head of State noted, European countries, especially those bordering Russia, are now not sure that the Alliance will not be afraid to react if Russian missiles and planes fly to them. After all, Russian state propagandists are already directly saying that the war against Ukraine is just the beginning, that other European countries will be next. This is also not denied in Kremlin.

“We emphasize that we need new formats of interaction, new determination. And if we cannot enter NATO's "open door", then we must work with communities available, communities that will help us. Like yours. And have some guarantees. We would like to have reliable guarantees that will work for us. And also for you,” noted the President of Ukraine.

“We suggested a way. The way for Ukraine to be able to protect its skies and its people on its own. I would like everyone to hear this, especially those countries that have borders with Russia. We do everything to get war planes. To get air defense,” he added.

The Ukrainian Head of State also stressed the need to increase sanctions pressure on Russia until its aggressive rhetoric and intentions change.

According to him, many global companies have not left the Russian market despite the imposition of tough sanctions against Russia. Some, having said they had left, are actually just waiting how this will end and when it will be possible to return.

“There is no international mechanism for influencing corporations today. If they ignore blood, the world can do nothing. And this is when the worst war since World War II continues. This needs to be addressed. Now. Before Russia goes further. The sanctions policy should be such that no one could even think of war. The question is not only in Russia - the question is in the future: what else can happen,” emphasized Zelenskyy.

According to him, the ban on the Russian fleet to use world ports, the complete disconnection of Russian banks from SWIFT, the recognition of Russia as a terrorist state, as well as embargo on any trade with Russia are needed.

“We emphasize that this is necessary for us, but it is also necessary for you. For the whole world, for peace in Ukraine and in Europe,” the President said and thanked the UK and every country that has taken a moral position.

The Ukrainian President stressed that the "Russian military machine" can still be stopped to end the killings and, most importantly, the destruction of democracies.

“I think we all know this practice and these tragedies: missiles and bombs, helicopters and tanks, saboteurs and cyberattacks - all that is in the arsenal of today's Russia. Everything will be directed against Europe if Ukraine does not survive. Therefore, I ask you: help yourself by helping us. You know what weapons we need. You know what means of protection we need. You know we crucially need airplanes. It would be extremely difficult for us without your efforts. I am grateful to you. But understand - we need more,” stressed Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

He said that Ukrainian defenders captured Russian equipment on the battlefield and sent it back against the enemy, as well as used old Soviet equipment that had not worked for decades. However, this is not enough, because, according to statistics, there is 1 Ukrainian tank per 100 Russian tanks, and 1 Ukrainian military per up to 30 soldiers of the occupying forces.

“That's why we really want you to help us. I am sure that you will be able to increase the volume and feel how it will strengthen your protection, your security together with ours. How this will make the world stable not only in our country, but also in your countries,” emphasized the President.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy spoke in favor of strengthening the anti-war coalition and stressed that our strength lies in rapid action and solidarity.

“Our strength is in the truth. It is on our side. We can stop the war with Russia. So that peace, that Ukrainians strives for, will come. Peace that the world strives for,” Volodymyr Zelenskyy concluded.

(https://bit.ly/3ihcMIR)

 

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy met with Prime Minister of Poland Mateusz Morawiecki, Deputy Prime Minister of Poland Jarosław Kaczyński, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic Petr Fiala and Prime Minister of Slovenia Janez Janša who arrived in Kyiv.

The President of Ukraine thanked the heads of government of Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovenia for the support their countries provide to Ukraine, as well as for their personal visit to Kyiv.

"At a time when many ambassadors have left Ukraine in connection with the full-scale invasion of the Russian Federation, these dignitaries, leaders of their beautiful independent European states, fear nothing, care for our fate more, and they are here to support us. This is a great courageous, correct and friendly step. And I am sure that with such friends, with such countries, with such neighbors and partners, we will really be able to win," Volodymyr Zelenskyy told reporters after the meeting.

The President noted that the talks focused on security guarantees for Ukraine, strengthening sanctions against the aggressor state, as well as the prospects of Ukraine's membership in the European Union.

The interlocutors also touched upon plans to rebuild our country after the end of hostilities. In this context, international assistance in replenishing the relevant reconstruction funds already established by the Ukrainian government is important.

"We know for sure that everything we are discussing will reach the positive goal for our country, our security and our future," the President stressed.

https://www.president.gov.ua/en/news/volodimir-zelenskij-u-kiyevi-zustrivsya-z-golovami-uryadiv-p-73585

 

Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine and Minister for Reintegration of Temporary Occupied Territories

Only 7 out of 9 negotiated humanitarian corridors worked.

On 15th March, 28 893 people were evacuated from sieged cities of Ukraine.

Mariupol corridor to Zaporizhzhia 20 000 people escaped via 4 000 private vehicles. 570 cars have already made their way to Zaporizhzhia, the rest are spending the night in Berdyansk and other towns in the oblast. In both Zaporizhzia and Berdyansk people are receiving necessary help.

Right now, Russian media attacks people who are fleeing Mariupol, making them tell in front of their cameras that Azov did not let them escape Mariupol; instead of respecting the people who spent two weeks under constant Russian artillery fire without food, water, and heating, Russian propagandists are preoccupied making more fake news.

The only reason why the Ukrainian military asked people to come back to Mariupol was the fact that Russians were firing at humanitarian corridors despite all agreements. As soon as it was proven that those corridors were safe, people were allowed to evacuate. 

While foreign journalists die from Russian bullets attempting to deliver the truth about events in Ukraine, Russian propagandists are doing everything possible to create more lies.

Sumy region:

8 533 people evacuated: 6 950 from Sumy, 140 from Trostyanets, 113 from Lebedyn, 166 from Shostka, 1 084 from Konotop. 

Kharkiv region:

320 patients and employees of the Oskilsk psychoneurological institution were evacuated.

Despite all agreements, the humanitarian convoy with buses for the evacuation of civilians from Mariupol — among whom are citizens of Greece and Turkey who do not possess private vehicles — remains blocked in Berdyansk.  

Attempts to evacuate people from villages of Bohdanivka, Novobohdanivka, and Bobryk (Kyiv region) failed again due to systematic violations of the temporary cease fire by Russian forces.

Tomorrow, it is planned that the Mariupol humanitarian corridor continues operating and the evacuation of people from Izum begins. 

Due to the all day long curfew in Kyiv and the settlements around the city, there will be no evaluation in Kyiv region. 

Efforts are made to free the local government representatives held hostage by Russians. The mayor of Melitopol Ivan Fiodorov is still held hostage. The information about the location of Evgen Matvieev and Sergii Pryima, the officials from Dniprorudnyansk who were kidnapped by Russians on March 13, is being established.

Vereshuk is demanding the international community to pay more attention to Mariupol, to recognize Russia as a terrorist state, and to put more effort into freeing the civilians, doctors, nurses who are held hostage.

(https://bit.ly/34LlbRX)

 

Commissioner for Human Rights in Ukraine 

The terrorist state is planning mass deforestation of Ukrainian forests.

This was stated in a letter from Russian Defense Minister Shoigu to Putin.

The aggressor minister asks for permission for the total felling of Ukrainian "forests, trees, shrubs and greenery." It is planned to cut down "any intensity and any age, regardless of ownership and category of land with the right to use the resulting wood."

At the same time, wood that is not used for the needs of the Russian Armed Forces will be sold, with proceeds replenishing Russian economy.

Today, without exception, all forests in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine are in the highest risk zone.

Last time this happened on the territory of Ukraine was during the Nazi occupation.

The total felling of greenery is another terrible crime of the aggressors and is a manmade ecocide. The area, free of trees, turns into a poor landscape, becomes uninhabitable.

Such actions will lead to the transformation of Ukraine into a dead desert and cause a humanitarian crisis in Europe. Such actions will affect many countries around the world, to which generous gifts of Ukrainian land are exported.

According to Article 8 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, war crimes include widespread, long-term and serious damage to the environment.

“I call on the world community to apply all possible sanctions against the terrorist state of the Russian Federation to withdraw Russian racist troops from Ukraine and stop the atrocities on our land.” underlined the Commissioner. 

(https://bit.ly/3IgXWgd)

 

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine

Operational situation on the diplomatic front as for March 15, 7pm

Today, true friends visited Ukraine: Prime Ministers of Poland, Czech Republic and Slovenia, the Deputy Prime Minister of Poland for Security, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania, and the European Commissioner for the Environment. We hold hundreds of meetings every day in Ukraine and abroad to provide our country with the necessary military, financial and humanitarian assistance.

Sanctions:

The European Union, the Group of Seven countries, as well as Albania, Australia, Iceland, South Korea, Moldova, Montenegro, New Zealand, Northern Macedonia and Norway have revoked Russia's largest trade facilitation status. This deprives Russia of key trade advantages as a member of the WTO. In particular, states may unilaterally impose or increase tariffs on imports from Russia;

The United Kingdom has announced ban on the export of luxury goods to Russia, and has introduced new tariffs on imports of hundreds of key goods, which are 35 percentage points higher than current rates;

Canada has imposed sanctions on 15 other Russian officials for their role in waging war against Ukraine;

Support the world:

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky addressed the Canadian Parliament. In his speech, the President thanked Canada for its leadership in supporting of Ukraine and called for further efforts to stop the aggressor;

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis became the first foreign minister to visit Ukraine since the start of a large-scale Russian invasion. In a joint statement, Dmytro Kuleba and Gabriel Landsbergis stressed the need for further Russian isolation and its economy in order to deprive the Kremlin of opportunities for further attacks on neighboring states;

Isolation of the Russian Federation:

Baker McKenzie, one of the world's largest law companies in the United States, is leaving the Russian market because of the war against Ukraine;

Norwegian energy company Equinor has decided to abandon trade in Russian oil completely because of Russia's war against Ukraine;

One of the world's leading tire manufacturers, the French Michelin Group, is suspending industrial activities in Russia and exporting to the aggressor state;

According to Forbes, blocking Instagram will cost Russia at least $ 200 million, as Russian bloggers will not be able to use the network and lose their income;

German multinational pharmaceutical company Bayer has suspended advertising and investment in Russia;

Humanitarian help:

The University of Alberta in Canada will not charge tuition fees for Ukrainian students affected by the war. The university will also provide funding to support living expenses for new and current Ukrainian students during the 2022-2023 academic year;

Today 11 cars and 14 containers of humanitarian aid, as well as 4 fire trucks and 3 ambulances left Poland for Ukraine;

The Metropolitan Opera in New York presented a charity program in support of Ukraine. The money received for tickets, as well as donations, will be donated to help the Ukrainian people.

(https://bit.ly/361NTyn)

 

Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine 

Ukraine is collecting evidence of crimes against cultural heritage committed by the Russian occupation forces on the territory of Ukraine.

The Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine created a resource for proper documentation of war crimes against humanity and cultural heritage sites committed by the Russian army.

The materials can be used as evidence to prosecute those involved in crimes under Ukrainian law at the International Criminal Court in The Hague and a special tribunal. Anyone can send videos and photos of such atrocities here: https://bit.ly/34J5VF0

 

Examples of war crimes

  1. Damage to ancient buildings (architectural monuments), historical cemeteries, memorials, religious buildings, works of art, nature monuments, buildings of cultural institutions - theaters, museums, libraries, etc.;

  2. Destruction of archeological objects - mounds, shafts of ancient earthen fortifications, excavation sites, etc.;

  3. Facts of injury/death of civilians as a result of the use of force and weapons by the occupier in an attempt to damage cultural objects;

  4. Seizure of property, looting by the occupying forces of museums, libraries and other cultural institutions;

 

How to document

  1. Make sure the situation is safe;

  2. Take photos and/or videos - capture the general appearance of the damaged object and the condition around the object, if possible – specific damage.

(https://bit.ly/3wahpgj)