UKRAINE: Many milestone events took place or came to light on Ukraine’s 48th day of war.
In Mariupol on 12 and 13 April 2022, an unprecedented number of soldiers and officers of the warring armies surrendered since World War II. The total number of AFU soldiers and officers who voluntarily surrendered to Russian captivity or were forced to do so under the threat of extermination exceeded 1,300, including 1,026 soldiers of the 36th AFU Marine Brigade.
However, the Ukrainian side claimed that a significant number of soldiers from the 36 Brigade broke through to the south rather than to the north and merged with the Azovstal garrison, reinforced it.
Available photo and video footages show dozens, but not hundreds, of AFU soldiers surrendering.
The Mariupol seaport was fully occupied by units of the Russian Armed Forces and the DPR. All hostages, including all foreigners, have been released. The mediation services of Turkish President Mr. Erdogan were not needed.
Scattered AFU units defend in the residential areas of Primorsky District. Some have retreated to the Azovstal plant. The port itself has yet to be demined. The coastal facilities are largely intact.
On 13 April, the mopping-up of separate buildings in residential areas adjacent to the Azovstal industrial zone continued. Fighters of the Azov Regiment are attempting to take refuge in the basements of residential buildings with the aim of later exiting the city in the guise of civilians.
There were reports of a critical shortage of ammunition and food for the AFU groups that continue to stay outside the Azovstal plant.
The area of the Azovstal plant itself is a heavily fortified stronghold with extensive multi-level underground communications. The degree of fortification of Azovstal is far superior to that of the Nazi fortress of Könisberg during World War II.
The second, remaining partially controlled by the AFU, fortified area near the Illich factory was exsanguinated as a result of mass surrenders and breakthrough attempts by AFU Marine battalions.
Information messages posted by Azov regiment fighters on social media have turned into a ranting call to save lives without any hope of military assistance or evacuation from Kiev.
It should be recalled that according to the most conservative estimates, there were at least 14,000 of the most combat-ready and qualified servicemen of the AFU and nationalist units on the territory of Mariupol before it was encircled. As of 13 April, the remaining forces were estimated at between 4,000 and 6,000 combat-ready Ukrainian servicemen.
More Ukrainian Armed Forces units and foreign mercenaries have arrived in the east of Ukraine, in Donetsk, Luhansk and Kharkiv regions, to take part in the upcoming battle for these regions.
The Russian Defence Ministry took advantage of the momentum and struck at the concentration of AFU troops. The Russian Defence Ministry has reported that Russian artillery units struck six strongholds of the units of the 24th Ukrainian Independent Mechanized Brigade near the village of Popasna, Luhansk Region. As a result of the strikes, over 120 servicemen of the unit, eleven armoured vehicles and fourteen vehicles of various purposes were destroyed.
The Russian Air Force’s aircrafts hit 38 military facilities throughout Ukraine.
These included the Toshkivka ammunition depot in Luhansk Region, as well as eight areas where Ukrainian military equipment was amassed in the settlements of Glazunivka, Pyatigorsk and Pryszyb in Kharkiv Region. Russian air defence forces shot down two unmanned aerial vehicles in the air over the settlements of Ochakov and Mykolaiv.
The HQ and fuel storage facility of the 128th Independent Mountain Assault Brigade of the Ukrainian armed forces near the town of Hulay-Pole in Zaporizhzhya Region have also been destroyed.
The Russian Defence Ministry said in its evening briefing on 13 April 2022 that it had recorded attempts at sabotage and strikes by Ukrainian forces against facilities on Russian Federation territory.
Moscow says that if such incidents continue, the Russian Armed Forces will strike at decision-making centres, including those in Kyiv, which the Russian army has so far refrained from doing. This statement raises a number of questions. For example, has the military and political leadership of the Russian Federation not yet realised that it is in a full scale war, at least with the “pro-NATO” Kiev regime in Ukraine, and probably with NATO, albeit indirectly. Why did the Russian MoD previously refrain from striking at the “decision-making centres” when it attempted to blockade Kiev. What is the true role of Medinsky, Peskov and some other politicians in the current events. Why, until recently, there was no military unity of command in the military operation of the Russian Defence Ministry in Ukraine, as British intelligence, eyewitnesses and events on the front lines declare and demonstrate. These and many other questions are very uncomfortable for the Kremlin.
On the night of 13-14 April, the flagship of the Russian Black Sea fleet, the cruiser Moscow, was sunk or seriously damaged. A ship of this class in the Black Sea conditions could have been successfully attacked either by a complex of anti-ship systems, including both missiles and aircrafts, or by a submarine. In any case the NATO military was directly involved in the attack.
There are reports from Kharkiv that three new nationalist battalions of the Ukrainian armed forces are being formed in the city under the names:
- “Harkivchyna -1”;
The main contingent of the new units was recruited from the Alekseevska, Kachanivska and 43rd penal colonies in Kharkiv, where those convicted of grave and especially grave crimes were kept.
These new battalions are supposed to blockade Kharkiv from the southern side and by no means allow the local population to leave the city and the subsequent retreat of AFU combat units.
Fighting continues in the Kharkiv area. Russian troops have been striking at military infrastructure facilities of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the city.
There are also strikes targeting Ukrainian military concentrations near Mykolaiv.
In the Izyum direction, where units of the Russian Defence Ministry were advancing towards Sloviansk and Kramatorsk from the north, the fighting moved to the stage of direct firefighting contact, with the enemy seeing each other through the sight of a machine gun rather than the sighting bar of an artillery.
A large number of military equipment and servicemen of the Russian Defence Ministry have been concentrated in Russia’s Belgorod Region. It appeared that these units were meant to take part in the upcoming battle for Ukraine’s east.
On 13 April, the US government approved another $800m military aid package for Ukraine, which includes a wide range of weapons and military equipment, including 11 multi-purpose Mi-17 helicopters, which were previously destined for the Afghan Armed Forces.
In addition, the package will include:
- 18 155mm howitzers and 40,000 rounds of ammunition for them.
- Mobile radar stations, including 10 mobile AN/TPQ-36 Firefinder anti-battery control systems and 2 AN/MPQ-64 Sentinel air target detection radars. The operators of these systems will be trained by US instructors.
- 200 M113 armoured personnel carriers.
- 100 Humvee off-road vehicles.
- 500 Javelin anti-tank missiles and hundreds of other anti-tank missiles.
- 300 Switchblade bomber ammunition of unnamed modification.
- Uncrewed patrol boats for coastal defence.
- M18A1 Claymore anti-personnel mines.
- C-4 explosives and demolition equipment.
- Radiation, chemical and biological defence equipment.
- Medical equipment.
- 30,000 sets of body armour and helmets.
- Over 2,000 scopes and laser rangefinders.
The supply of weapons to Ukraine from other NATO countries, including tanks, infantry fighting vehicles and artillery, is expected to intensify. The supply of missiles and the direct participation of NATO units in the conflict in Ukraine is on the agenda now. According to information from local sources on both sides of the conflict, up to 40 percent of the most combat-ready AFU units are already composed of NATO citizens.
The destruction of the Russian cruiser Moscow could be the trigger for a sharp escalation of the conflict, which is in the interests of a large part of the so-called “global elites”.
The difficult domestic political situation in the United States, Germany and France is fuelling the desire of the ruling elites to retain power by launching and under the excuse of World War III.
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