(NEW YORK) — More than six months after Russian President Vladimir Putin launched an invasion into neighboring Ukraine, the two countries are locked in a fight for control of areas in eastern and southern Ukraine.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, whose forces launched an offensive in August, has pledged to retake all territory occupied by Russia. But Putin announced in September a mobilization of reservists, which should call up to 300,000 additional soldiers.
Here’s how the news evolves. All times Eastern:
Sept. 26, 11:01 a.m. EDT
US sends Ukraine $457.5 million in emergency preparedness assistance
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced on Monday that the United States will give Ukraine an additional $457.5 million in civil security assistance to support law enforcement and criminal justice efforts. Ukrainians “to improve their operational capacity and save lives”.
Blinken said some of the funds will also be used to support efforts to “document, investigate and prosecute atrocities perpetrated by Russian forces.” He said since December the United States had pledged more than $645 million to support Ukrainian law enforcement.
Blinken’s announcement follows a UN-led investigation that found Russian troops committed war crimes in occupied areas of Ukraine, including the rape, torture and imprisonment of children .
Sept. 26, 10:14 a.m. EDT
Ukrainian first lady “worried” about Russian mobilization
In a new interview, Ukrainian First Lady Olena Zelenka told ABC News recent developments in the war were heartbreaking, saying it was not an “easy time” for the Ukrainian people.
“While the whole world wants this war to be over, they continue to recruit soldiers for their army,” Zelenska said, referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s announcement last week that he was mobilizing 300,000 soldiers. additional soldiers against Ukraine. “Of course we’re worried about that. We’re worried and it’s a bad sign for the whole world.”
Zelenska, who spoke to ABC News’ Amy Robach through a translator, said Ukrainians will continue to persevere in the face of conflict.
“The main difference between our army and the Russian army is that we really know what we are fighting for,” she said.
Zelenska attended the United Nations General Assembly in person in New York, where she spoke to ABC News about the recent UN discovery that war crimes have been committed in Ukraine by Russian troops. An appointed panel of independent legal experts reported that Russian soldiers had “raped, tortured and unlawfully confined” children in Ukraine, among other crimes.
“On the one hand, it’s horrible news, but it’s the news we already knew,” she said. “On the other hand, it’s great news that the whole world can finally see that this is a heinous crime, that this war is against humanity and humanity.”
September 26, 5:40 a.m. EDT
A man opens fire at the Russian military enlistment office
A man opened fire on a military enlistment office in eastern Russia, seriously injuring a recruiting officer.
Apparent video of the shooting was circulating online, showing a man shooting the officer at an officer’s podium in the city of Irkutsk.
The Irkutsk regional governor confirmed the shooting, naming the wounded officer Alexander V. Yeliseyev and saying he was in intensive care in critical condition.
The suspected shooter has been arrested, according to the governor.
Sept. 25, 12:49 p.m. EDT
Russian Defense Ministry announces high-level leadership reshuffle
The Russian Defense Ministry has announced a high-level reshuffle of its military leadership as Russian forces struggle in the war against Ukraine.
The Defense Ministry said on Saturday that Colonel-General Mikhail Y. Mizintsev had been promoted to deputy defense minister for logistics, replacing four-star general Dmitry V. Bulgakov, 67, who had held the post for 2008.
Bulgakov was relieved of his duties and should be transferred “to another post”, according to the press release from the Ministry of Defense.
The New York Times reported that Mizintsev – whom Western officials dubbed the “Butcher of Mariupol” after alleged atrocities against civilians surfaced in the Ukrainian city in March, previously served as head of the National Defense Management Center Russian, which oversees military operations and planning.
In that previous role, Mizintsev became one of the public faces of the war in Ukraine, telling the public about what the Kremlin still calls a “special military operation.”
Mizintsev has been placed on international sanctions lists and charged with atrocities for his role in the brutal siege of Mariupol.
Sept. 25, 11:58 a.m. EDT
Report of Russian recruits for military mobilization
Newly recruited Russian soldiers are reporting for duty in response to the Kremlin’s emergency mobilization to bolster forces in Ukraine, according to photographs from Russia.
Russian President Vladimir Putin last week announced a mobilization to recruit more than 300,000 Russians with military expertise, sparking anti-war protests across the country and prompting many to try to flee Russia to avoid death. conscription.
Putin signed a law with amendments to the Russian Criminal Code increasing penalties for crimes of desertion during periods of mobilization and martial law.
White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said in an interview with ABC News on Sunday This week anchor George Stephanopoulos that Russia’s military plan is further evidence that Russia is “struggling” in its invasion of Ukraine. He also said the “fake referendums” taking place in the Russian-backed territories of eastern and southern Ukraine are also acts of desperation by the Kremlin.
“These are certainly not signs of strength or confidence. Quite the contrary: they are signs that Russia and Putin are fighting hard,” Sullivan said while noting that Putin’s autocratic grip on the country made it difficult to final assessment from the outside.
Copyright © 2022, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.