KYIV, Ukraine – Ukraine’s presidential office said Tuesday that at least seven civilians have been killed and three others have been wounded in the latest Russian shelling of the eastern Donetsk region.
The attacks came as the Russians pressed their offensive on the strategically placed towns of Bakhmut and Avdiivka and also shelled other areas in the Donetsk region, which is part of Ukraine’s industrial heartland of Donbas.
As part of its attacks over the past 24 hours, the Russian military also again struck the cities of Nikopol and Marhanets facing the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant across the Dnieper, damaging residential buildings, a factory and water supply network.
In the Mykolaiv region, Russian shelling damaged residential buildings and a kindergarten.
– German president arrives in Ukraine as tensions rise
– EXPLAINER: Dirty bombs sow fear and panic, cause few deaths
– Ukraine hospital’s staff fight dark memories of occupation
BERLIN – German and European Union leaders have gathered experts in Berlin to start work on a “new Marshall plan” for the rebuilding of Ukraine.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said Tuesday that the aim is to discuss “how to ensure and how to sustain the financing of the recovery, reconstruction and modernization of Ukraine for years and decades to come.”
Scholz, who co-hosted the meeting with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, said he’s looking for “nothing less than creating a new Marshall plan for the 21st century – a generational task that must begin now.” That was a reference to the U.S.-sponsored plan that helped revive Western European economies after World War II.
Von der Leyen said the World Bank puts the cost of damage to Ukraine so far at 350 billion euros ($345 billion).
She said that, in addition to longer-term help, “Ukraine needs fast rehabilitation right now as we speak” as Russia targets Ukrainian electricity and other infrastructure ahead of the onset of the winter. She called those “pure acts of terror.”
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy emphasized that point in a video address from Kyiv. He said that Ukraine has a $17 billion “fast recovery” plan to repair damage to hospitals, schools, transport and energy infrastructure among other things, but “as of now we haven’t received a single cent for the implementation of the fast recovery plan.”
COPENHAGEN, Denmark – Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre said Tuesday that “the messages from the Russian leadership indicate that Russia is steering toward a long-term break with the West.”
“An isolated Russia is bad news,” Gahr Støre said, according to Norwegian broadcaster NRK. “It is disturbing that today there is so little contact and direct communication with Russia. It weakens the possibility of finding a negotiated end to the war.”
In a speech to the Norwegian parliament, Gahr Støre said that after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 28, “we clearly see how much is at stake.”
Russian President Vladimir Putin “takes high risks. And the willingness to take risks seems to increase in line with bad news from the battlefield,” he said according to Norwegian news agency NTB. “We are now in the most demanding security political situation since World War II.”
BERLIN — Germany’s president has arrived in Kyiv for his first visit to Ukraine since Russia’s invasion began eight months ago.
President Frank-Walter Steinmeier said after arriving Tuesday that “it was important to me in this phase of air attacks with drones, cruise missiles and rockets to send a signal of solidarity to Ukrainians,” German news agency dpa reported.
Steinmeier plans to meet President Volodymyr Zelenskyy during his visit.
The German president, whose position is largely ceremonial, made it to Ukraine at his third attempt.
In April, he hoped to visit with his Polish and Baltic counterparts, but said his presence “apparently … wasn’t wanted in Kyiv.” Steinmeier has been criticized in Ukraine for allegedly cozying up to Russia during his time as foreign minister.
Last week, a planned trip was put off because of security concerns.
Follow AP’s coverage of the war in Ukraine: https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine
Copyright © 2022 The Washington Times, LLC.