Military analysts have said the actions in the region are part of Russia’s broader offensive. Jens Stoltenberg, the secretary general of NATO, said in a news conference ahead of a meeting with foreign ministers on Wednesday and Thursday that in coming weeks a further Russian push is expected in eastern and southern Ukraine.
Russia-Ukraine War: Key Developments
Card 1 of 4
U.N. meeting. President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine addressed the United Nations Security Council, detailing the horrors he saw in Bucha, the Kyiv suburb where Russian troops have been accused of killing civilians, and laying out a powerful indictment of the U.N.’s failure to prevent the invasion.
On the ground. As Russian forces have retreated around Kyiv, Ukrainian and Western officials said that Russia appeared to be positioning troops for an intensified assault in the eastern Donbas region, where the port city of Mariupol remains under a brutal siege.
The goal, he said, is to take the entire Donbas region in Ukraine’s east, portions of which have been held by Russia-backed separatists since 2014, and to create a land bridge to Crimea, which was annexed by Russia in 2014.
Vitaly Kim, the governor of the Mykolaiv region, said that missiles struck a children’s hospital on Monday. He shared video of the attack in which a British ambulance that had been donated to the hospital was hit. The video could not immediately be verified.
Mr. Kim, in a separate video message posted early on Wednesday to his Telegram channel, said that the situation overnight had remained relatively calm and that he had talked with residents of the city and the region.
“People are tough,” he said, but added that “after the atrocities in Bucha, the mood is completely different and direct clashes will be different.”
Troops based in the region said they have learned the rhythms of Russian attacks and know how to protect themselves, limiting casualties among soldiers.
“We are well dug in and have learned how to act during shelling,” said a sergeant from the Mykolaiv-based 79th Air Assault Brigade, who would only give his first name, Andrei. “I feel sorry for the civilian population, who should not be dying.”