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Things to know about the conflict

Russian troops are bombing Ukrainian cities and closing in on the capital, Kyiv, in a relentless bombardment that is further deepening the humanitarian crisis in this war, now in its third week.

Still, a narrow diplomatic channel remains open, with a Ukrainian official saying talks with the Russians on Tuesday were difficult but there was room for compromise.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy told European leaders gathering in London on Tuesday that he was aware that NATO had no intention of absorbing Ukraine. Zelensky has hinted at this before, but this statement was more explicit. Russia is calling on Ukraine to drop its bid to join NATO, adopt neutral status and demilitarize.

US President Joe Biden will announce on Wednesday that the US will provide more military aid to Ukraine, including anti-tank and air defense weapons. Zelenskyj is scheduled to address the congress via video on Wednesday.

Territorial Defense soldiers inspect the damage to the Artem building caused by authorities as Russian bombing in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Territorial Defense soldiers inspect the damage to the Artem building caused by authorities as Russian bombing in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Los Angeles Times via Getty Imag

Here are some important things to know about the conflict:

WHAT IS HAPPENING IN AND AROUND Kyiv?

Artillery fire echoed through Kyiv on Tuesday as Russia launched strikes that ignited a huge fire at a 15-story apartment building. Zelenskyi said barrages also hit four multistory buildings, killing dozens of people.

Blasts caused extensive structural damage, with shockwaves from a blast tearing through the entrance of a downtown subway station that residents have been using as a bomb shelter.


Get the latest Update in the Russia-Ukraine conflict with live coverage of The Post.


SHOW SUPPORT FOR UKRAINE

The leaders of Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovenia traveled to Kyiv by train on Tuesday to demonstrate their support for Ukraine. Janez Jansa from Slovenia described the visit as a message that Ukraine is a European country that deserves to be admitted to the European Union one day.

The head of the Ukrainian Catholic Church in the United States on Tuesday asked for humanitarian aid and arms to help Ukrainians fight the Russian invasion. The Reverend Borys Gudziak asked what is the use of feeding the citizens of Ukraine “when their brains are blown off, when their houses are reduced to rubble”.

The current situation on the ground in Ukraine.
The current situation on the ground in Ukraine.
NY Post illustration

WHAT HAPPENS IN MARIUPOL, OTHER CITIES?

After days of relentless Russian shelling of Mariupol, an estimated 20,000 civilians used a humanitarian corridor to flee the port city. The route runs more than 160 miles west to the Ukrainian-held city of Zaporizhia.

Russian troops seized a hospital in Mariupol and took about 500 people hostage in another attack on the southern port city late Tuesday, regional leader Pavlo Kyrylenko said. The soldiers drove 400 people from neighboring houses to the regional intensive care hospital, and about 100 doctors and patients are believed to be inside, he said.

Women cry in front of a destroyed apartment building after a bomb attack in a residential area in Kyiv.
Women cry in front of a destroyed apartment building after a bomb attack in a residential area in Kyiv.
AP

Ukraine said a Russian general was killed in the storming of Mariupol. Major General Oleg Mityaev, who commanded the 150th Motorized Rifle Division, died Tuesday, Ukraine’s Interior Ministry adviser Anton Gerashchenko said. There was no confirmation from Russia on the fourth reported death of a Russian general in Ukraine.

To the east, Russian forces bombarded downtown Kharkiv with artillery, hitting the city’s historic center, including the Main Market Square. Rescuers pulled the bodies of dead civilians from destroyed apartment buildings.

FOX NEWS JOURNALISTS KILLED

Two journalists who work for Fox News were killed and one was injured when the vehicle they were traveling in was hit by fire near Kyiv on Monday, the network said on Tuesday.

Video journalist Pierre Zakrzewski, 55, died along with Ukrainian journalist Oleksandra “Sasha” Kuvshynova, 24, who was helping Fox crews navigate the country. Another reporter, Benjamin Hall, was injured.

This image released by Fox News Channel shows cameraman Pierre Zakrzewski in action with colleagues. Zakrzewski was killed in Ukraine on Monday March 14, 2022 when the vehicle he was traveling in was hit by an approaching fire.
This image released by Fox News Channel shows cameraman Pierre Zakrzewski in action with colleagues. Zakrzewski was killed in Ukraine on Monday March 14, 2022 when the vehicle he was traveling in was hit by an approaching fire.
AP

London-based Zakrzewski had covered conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria and last year played a key role in getting Fox freelancers and their families out of Afghanistan following the US withdrawal, according to the network.

The attack came a day after documentary filmmaker Brent Renaud was killed when Russian forces opened fire on his vehicle.

WHAT DID THE AP DIRECTLY OBSERVE OR CONFIRM?

Flames engulfed an apartment building in Svyatoshynskyi district in western Kyiv as rescue workers climbed ladders to rescue people.

Thick, dark smoke choked the air. A firefighter at the scene confirmed one person had died and several were rescued alive – but more remained trapped inside. A young woman sobbed in front of the charred building, where shocked residents surveyed the damage.

“People are dying and the worst thing is that children are dying,” said Andriy, a local firefighter, who gave only his first name before walking back into the burning building.

Ukrainian soldiers carry the coffin of a Ukrainian serviceman killed in an airstrike on a military base in Yarokiv, during a memorial service in Lviv, Ukraine.
Ukrainian soldiers carry the coffin of a Ukrainian serviceman killed in an airstrike on a military base in Yarokiv, during a memorial service in Lviv, Ukraine.
AP

A small but growing number of people are now returning to Ukraine to help, from foreign volunteers to Ukrainian emigrants and, more recently, women.

“I’ll go back and help. I work in healthcare so hospitals need help,” said Iryna Orel, 50, while lugging her luggage as she boarded a train from Przemysl, Poland, to Lviv in western Ukraine. “And I will stay to the end.”

WHAT STATUS IS DIPLOMACY IN RUSSIA-UKRAINE WAR?

Zelenskyi said early Wednesday that Russia’s demands during the negotiations were becoming “more realistic”.

After a meeting of Ukrainian negotiators with their Russian counterparts, Ukrainian Presidential Advisor Ihor Zhovkva said Tuesday’s talks had been more constructive. The talks are expected to continue on Wednesday.

Russia has circulated a proposed UN Security Council resolution calling for protection for civilians “in vulnerable situations” in Ukraine, as well as safe transit for humanitarian aid and people wishing to leave the country, without Russia’s responsibility for the to mention war.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy puts his hand on his chest as he listens to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's opening remarks before addressing the Canadian Parliament Tuesday, March 15, 2022 in Ottawa.
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy puts his hand on his chest as he listens to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s opening remarks before addressing the Canadian Parliament Tuesday, March 15, 2022 in Ottawa.
AP

Biden is planned Travel to Brussels next week for talks with NATO and European leaders to discuss the Russian invasion, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Tuesday.

In an emotional speech to lawmakers in Canada, Zelensky called on Canada’s Parliament and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to help create a no-fly zone over Ukraine. The President of Ukraine spoke via video to a crowded chamber of the House of Commons in Ottawa.

WHAT ABOUT SANCTIONS AGAINST RUSSIA?

The USA added more penalties Tuesday, which targets high-ranking Russian military officials. The US also imposed additional sanctions on Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko for allowing Russia to use his country as a base for attacks on Ukraine.

The EU also added new sanctions to deny oligarchs luxury goods like thoroughbred horses, and sanctioned 15 people including the chief executive of Russia’s state-owned TV channel Channel One, which the EU says is being used to spread propaganda.

HOW IS THE SPORTING WORLD AFFECTED BY RUSSIA’S WAR IN UKRAINE?

The EU imposed sanctions on Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich on Tuesday. Britain already had Abramovich’s assets frozen and prevented Chelsea from selling new tickets or merchandise or signing new players.

The Sports Arbitration Court upheld a ban on Russian football teams from participating in European competitions. Russia is also asking CAS to review a similar ban by FIFA, which awarded Poland a bye in their scheduled March 24 World Cup qualifier against Russia.

Sanctioned Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich sits in a VIP lounge before a jet associated with him took off from Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod, near Tel Aviv, Israel, bound for Istanbul.
Sanctioned Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich sits in a VIP lounge before a jet associated with him took off from Ben Gurion International Airport in Lod, near Tel Aviv, Israel, bound for Istanbul.
REUTERS

The Swiss Swimming Federation is threatening to boycott this year’s World Championships in June and July in Budapest, Hungary, if the sports federation allows Russian and Belarusian athletes to compete. FINA, the International Swimming Federation, has spoken out against a ban and would allow them to compete without their national flags.

Wimbledon organizers and the British government are discussing whether Russian tennis players will be allowed to take part in this year’s tournament if they don’t distance themselves from President Vladimir Putin.

https://nypost.com/2022/03/16/russia-ukraine-war-key-things-to-know-about-the-conflict/ Things to know about the conflict

JACLYN DIAZ

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