Ukraine Daily Summary - Thursday, May 4

Russia deploys military equipment, explosives at Zaporizhzhia power plant -- Russia may have staged Kremlin drone strike to bring war home to domestic audience -- Russia likely shifting targets in coordinated mass missile strikes -- Nordic-Ukrainian Summit: Kyiv must eventually join NATO -- and more

Thursday, May 4

Russia’s war against Ukraine

A couple stands in front of a damaged multistory residential building, where a Russian strike killed 23 people, in Uman, Cherkasy Oblast.

A wounded child is helped by police officers at a local supermarket following a Russian strike in the southern Ukrainian town of Kherson on May 3, 2023, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Photo by Dina Pletenchuk / AFP via Getty Images)

Ukraine downs 18 drones, all aerial targets over Kyiv.Ukrainian Air Force reported that Russian forces have launched up to 24 Shahed-136/131 attack drones from Bryansk region and the eastern coast of the Azov Sea in the early hours of May 4.

UK Defense Ministry: Russia likely shifting targets in coordinated mass missile strikes. Russian missile strikes are likely shifting from targeting Ukraine’s energy infrastructure to military, industrial, and logistical infrastructure, the U.K. Defense Ministry wrote on May 3.

Russia deploys military equipment, explosives at Zaporizhzhia power plant. Russian troops have placed military equipment, weapons, and explosives in the turbine department of the unit four of the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, according to the information from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Zelensky visits Finland for summit with Nordic leaders. President Volodymyr Zelensky is in Finland for a one-day summit with leaders of the Nordic countries, the Washington Post reported on May 3.

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Nordic-Ukrainian Summit: Kyiv must eventually join NATO. Nordic NATO member states will continue supporting Ukraine on its path toward the alliance, as well as continue their “political, financial, humanitarian and military support to Ukraine for as long as it takes,” reads the joint statement.

Media: Zelensky lands in Netherlands. President Volodymyr Zelensky landed in the Netherlands late on May 3, reported NOS news organization.

Media: Zelensky to visit Germany on May 13-14. President Volodymyr Zelensky to visit Berlin on May 13 at the invitation of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, as reported by the German newspaper Der Tagesspiegel.

SBU, police disband 9 bot farms spreading disinformation. The National Police and the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) disbanded nine bot farms spreading information about fake threats in Ukraine, the Prosecutor General’s Office reported on May 3.

Kremlin drone strike

Russian state media: Kremlin attacked by drones. Russian dictator Vladimir Putin’s Kremlin residence was targeted by two Ukrainian drones overnight on May 3, according to Russian state media.

Zelensky: ‘We didn’t attack Putin or Moscow.’ President Volodymyr Zelensky denied Russia’s claims that the Kremlin residence of Russian President Vladimir Putin was targeted by two Ukrainian drones overnight on May 3.

ISW: Russia may have staged Kremlin drone strike to bring war home to domestic audience. Several indicators suggest that a drone strike against the Kremlin on May 3 was internally conducted and purposefully staged by Russia, the Institute for the Study of War said in its latest update.

Read our exclusives

Trained in the heat of battle: The journey of Kharkiv Oblast’s Territorial Defense

At an undisclosed part of the front line in Ukraine’s Kharkiv Oblast, orderly lines of trenches snake along a ridge looking across no-man’s land towards Russian positions. 

Photo: Francis Farrell/The Kyiv Independent

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Wounded soldiers fight for recovery in Zaporizhzhia rehabilitation center

Serhii Demko’s active duty is over. He had served since the first day of the Russian invasion when he was sent to the southern front line. In May of last year, a Russian infantry fighting vehicle fired at his squad, killing one and wounding the rest.

Photo: Alexander Query/The Kyiv Independent

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Ukraine war latest: Zelensky dismisses Russia’s claims of attempted ‘Putin assassination’ as drone reportedly explodes above Kremlin

President Volodymyr Zelensky has dismissed Russia’s claims that Ukraine attempted to ‘assassinate’ Russian dictator Vladimir Putin after a drone reportedly exploded just above the Kremlin overnight on May 3.

Screenshot from the video circulating on social media

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Human cost of war

Update: 21 killed, 48 injured in Russian attack on Kherson Oblast. “A railway station and a crossing, a house, a hardware store, a grocery supermarket, a gas station — what unites these places? The bloody trail that Russia leaves with its shells, killing civilians in Kherson and Kherson Oblast,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said.

Russia shells 6 communities in Sumy Oblast, injuring 1 civilian. Russian forces targeted the communities of Myropillia, Yunakivka, Znob-Novhorodske, Bilopillia, Vorozhbianska, and Seredyna-Buda, the Sumy Oblast Military Administration said on May 3.

General Staff: Russia has lost 191,940 troops in Ukraine since Feb 24, 2022. The General Staff of Ukraine’s Armed Forces reported on May 3 that Russia had lost 191,940 troops in Ukraine since the beginning of its full-scale invasion on Feb. 24 last year. This number includes 520 casualties Russian forces suffered just over the past day.

International response

US to provide Ukraine with additional $300 million in military aid. The package includes more ammunition for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS), additional howitzers, artillery and mortar rounds, as well as small arms and small arms ammunition. According to the Pentagon press release, Washington will also provide Ukraine with anti-tank and anti-armor weapon systems, anti-tank guided missiles, Hydra-70 aircraft rockets, and more.

US ambassador meets with independent Ukrainian media on World Press Freedom Day. “On World Press Freedom Day, I met with some of the courageous journalists committed to reporting on Russia’s brutal war and helping build a stronger future for Ukraine,” U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Bridget Brink, wrote on Twitter.

In other news

Ukraine rises in World Press Freedom Index. Ukraine rose from 106th to 79th place in the 2023 World Press Freedom Index published by Reporters Without Borders on May 3.

The Kyiv Independent’s journalist wins 2023 George Weidenfeld Prize. Asami Terajima, the Kyiv Independent’s reporter, won the 2023 George Weidenfeld Prize. It is awarded annually for “excellent investigative and courageous research activities” as part of the prestigious German Axel Springer Prize.

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