Ukraine Daily Summary - Tuesday, March 5

Railway bridge blown up in Russia's Samara Oblast -- Ukraine's military intelligence claims cyberattack on Russian Defense Ministry -- Ukraine plans record electricity exports to 5 countries -- Poland to ask EU to sanction Russian, Belarusian agricultural products -- SBU suspects 2 Russian generals of bombing residential buildings in Kyiv Oblast town -- and more

Tuesday, March 5

Russia’s war against Ukraine

(L-R) Ukrainian infrastructure minister Oleksandr Kubrakov, Governor of Chernihiv Oblast Viacheslav Chaus, CEO of Expertise France Jeremie Pellet on March 4, 2024, in Kyiv, Ukraine. (Ministry of Infrastructure of Ukraine/Facebook)

Military: Ukraine stalls Russian advances in some areas near Avdiivka. Ukrainian forces have stalled the Russian military’s advances in some areas west of the recently captured city of Avdiivka, Dmytro Lykhovii, a spokesperson for Ukraine’s Tavria Group, reported on March 4.

Air Force: Ukraine downs 18 Russian drones overnight. Ukraine shot down 18 of the 22 Shahed-type attack drones launched by Russia overnight on March 5, the Air Force said in its morning update.

Zelensky replaces Support Forces commander. President Volodymyr Zelensky dismissed Dmytro Hereha as the commander of Ukraine’s Support Forces, replacing him with Oleksandr Yakovets, according to his decrees published on March 4.

Shmyhal: Ukraine aims to reduce number of ministries by one-third. According to Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal, 20,000 government vacancies have already been cut in 2024.

Shmyhal: 8 taxpayers per soldier needed to fund military. The Ukrainian government needs eight taxpayers per soldier to ensure the state budget has enough funding for the military, Denys Shmyhal said during a press conference on March 4.

Shmyhal: Ukraine listing sites that could be rebuilt with funds from frozen Russian assets. Ukraine is compiling a list of sites that Russia has destroyed to specifically allocate funds from frozen Russian assets, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said at a press conference on March 4.

SBU suspects 2 Russian generals of bombing residential buildings in Kyiv Oblast town. “As a result of the air attack, Russia destroyed six apartment buildings, killing more than 30 local residents, including a young girl,” the report said.

SBU detains man suspected of spying on air defense in Dnipro. The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) detained a Dnipro resident who was allegedly recruited by Russia to pass on information on the city’s air defense, the SBU’s press service reported on March 4.

Ukrenergo: Ukraine plans record electricity exports to 5 countries. Ukraine plans to export a record 13 gigawatt hours of electricity to other countries on March 4, namely to Slovakia, Hungary, Poland, Romania, and Moldova, Ukrenergo, Ukraine’s state-owned energy operator, announced.

Russian court arrests ex-Ukrainian ambassador to Kazakhstan in absentia. Talking to a Kazakh blogger about Russia’s war in an August 2022 interview, Vrublevskyi said: “We are trying to kill as many of them as possible. The more Russians we kill now, the less of them our children will have to kill.”

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DTEK: Power supply restored for over 400,000 Ukrainian homes in February. DTEK, Ukraine’s largest private energy company, restored electricity supply to 426,000 homes after blackouts caused by Russian attacks in February, DTEK’s press service reported on March 4.

NATO begins large-scale military drills in northern Europe. The Nordic Response 24 NATO exercises begin in northern Finland, Sweden, and Norway on March 4, for the first time with the participation of Finland as a NATO member, the Finnish public broadcaster YLE reported.

Military intelligence: Railway bridge blown up in Russia’s Samara Oblast. The bridge and the adjacent railway connection were used by Russia to transport military cargo, namely engineering explosives produced by the JSC Polimer in the city of Chapayevsk, HUR said.

Ukraine’s military intelligence claims cyberattack on Russian Defense Ministry. The operation by HUR’s cyber specialists reportedly helped to obtain orders, reports, instructions, and reports “that circulated among about 2,000 structural units of the Russian security service.”

Health Ministry starts inspection of Kyiv military medical commissions. Ukraine’s Health Ministry is starting an inspection of military medical commissions in Kyiv due to increased complaints, Minister Viktor Liashko announced on March 4.

Read our exclusives

Ukraine war latest: Ukraine slows Russian advances west of Avdiivka, military says

Ukrainian forces have stalled Russia’s advances in some areas west of the recently captured Avdiivka, Dmytro Lykhovii, a spokesperson for Ukraine’s Tavria Group, reported on March 4.

Photo: Vlada Liberova/Libkos/Getty Images

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Human cost of war

Interior Minister: Russian secondary attack kills 2 rescuers, injures 3 more. A Russian strike on the Kramatorsk district of Donetsk Oblast killed two rescuers and wounded another three while they were putting out a fire caused by an earlier attack, Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko reported on March 4.

Governor: Russian cluster munitions attack in Zaporizhzhia Oblast kills civilian. Russian forces struck the village of Rizdvianka in Zaporizhzhia Oblast with cluster munitions, killing a civilian, Governor Ivan Fedorov reported on March 4.

Russian attacks against Ukraine kill 1, injure 21 over past day. Russia targeted a total of nine Ukrainian oblasts — Chernihiv, Sumy, Mykolaiv, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia, Dnipropetrovsk, Donetsk, Kherson, and Kharkiv.

Authorities: 20 injured in Russia’s deadly March 2 attack against Odesa. Rescue operations in the wake of the deadly attack that killed 12 people, including five children, concluded late on March 3.

Russian drone attack against Beryslav in Kherson Oblast injures man. The drone reportedly dropped an explosive device on Beryslav’s streets in the morning, injuring the resident. He was hospitalized with a blast injury and shrapnel wounds, officials said.

General Staff: Russia has lost 417,950 troops in Ukraine since Feb. 24, 2022. This number includes 1,150 casualties Russian forces suffered just over the past day.

Opinions and insights

Opinion: Call of Duty’s Modern Warfare III whitewashes the Kremlin’s crimes

“As someone who was in Kyiv when the full-scale war began, playing through Modern Warfare III is like experiencing an extreme form of surrealist humor, the kind that doesn’t elicit any laughs. I know people who are serving on the front and who have family members still living under Russian occupation,” writes Jason Wojnar in his latest op-ed.

Photo: Emanuele Cremaschi/Getty Images

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International response

France invests 5 million euros in reconstruction of Chernihiv Oblast. Ukrainian officials signed an agreement with France to invest over 5 million euros towards the reconstruction of Chernihiv Oblast, Ukrainian infrastructure minister Oleksandr Kubrakov announced on March 4.

Ukraine, Spain start talks on security guarantees. Ukraine and Spain began negotiations on a bilateral agreement on security guarantees under the Group of Seven (G7) Joint Declaration of Support for Ukraine, the Presidential Office reported on March 4.

Euractiv: European Commission wants Ukraine to join EU’s defense industry support scheme. The European Commission wants Ukraine to become a full member of the EU’s defense industry support scheme, which would help use the country’s military experience and bring Kyiv closer to EU accession, Euractiv reported on March 4, citing a draft proposal.

Tusk: Poland to ask EU to sanction Russian, Belarusian agricultural products. Poland plans to ask the EU to impose sanctions on Russian and Belarusian agricultural products and foodstuffs, Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk said on March 4.

Hungarian FM: Conditions not yet ripe for Zelensky-Orban meeting. In late January, Olha Stefanishyna, the deputy prime minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration, said Ukraine was working to organize an official Orban’s visit, the first in 14 years.

Shmyhal: Poland’s border disputes with Ukraine influenced by pre-election struggle, no blocking of critical cargo recorded. Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal pointed out that economically, the ongoing trade disputes and border blockade cost Poland more than Ukraine. Only 5% of Ukrainian agricultural exports are transported by road, with 90% being shipped out via maritime routes, he noted.

Russian media: Moscow summons German ambassador following alleged leaks. The ambassador’s summons is related to an alleged leaked recording of talks between high-ranking German military officials about the possible delivery of Taurus long-range missiles, the agency claims.

Deputy PM: Ukraine expects EU accession negotiation framework ‘no later than March 12.’ Ukraine expects the European Commission to present a negotiation framework for Kyiv’s accession to the EU “no later than March 12,” Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Olha Stefanishyna said, as reported by the media on March 4.

WSJ: US chips flow to Russia from China via Central Asian routes. Russia is increasing imports of sanctioned dual-use goods like drones or U.S.-made computer chips from China via Central Asian trade routes, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported on March 4.

France releases list of aid donated to Ukraine since Feb. 24, 2022. The newly published list of 50 items includes 30 Caesar self-propelled artillery systems, 38 AMX10 armored fighting vehicles, 250 VAB armored vehicles in various modifications, 160 drones, and 10 drone-detecting systems.

In other news

Albania reopens communist-era air base after $54 million NATO refurbishment. Kucova air base in Albania reopened on March 4 after undergoing a 50 million euro ($54 million) NATO refurbishment, making it the region’s largest NATO tactical air base.

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Today’s Ukraine Daily was brought to you by Katya Denisova, Martin Fornusek, Elsa Court, Oleksiy Sorokin, Dinara Khalilova, Teah Pelechaty, Olena Goncharova, and Rachel Amran.

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