A high-rise residential building damaged by Russian strikes on Kyiv, Ukraine, June 26, 2022

Sunday’s Coverage: Zelenskiy — “We Will Win Back Sievierodonetsk, Donetsk, Luhansk”

Source: Institute for the Study of War


At least 10 people have been killed and 40 wounded, nine seriously, in a Russian missile strike on a shopping mall in Kremenchuk in central Ukraine.

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said more than 1,000 civilians were in the mall when it was hit and set ablaze.

Russia also killed four people and wounded 19 in shelling of Kharkiv city in northeast Ukraine.


Visiting Ukraine, President Maia Sandu of neighboring Moldova, has emphasized:

Moldova is a fragile and vulnerable country. Ukraine and Moldova need help. We want this war to stop, this Russian aggression against Ukraine to be stopped as soon as possible. We want to stay part of the free world.

Russia’s pressure on Moldova including its occupation of the Transnistria region since the 1990s.

Moldova’s candidate for European Union membership, like that of Ukraine, was approved by the European Commission last Thursday.

Sandu visited the Kyiv-area towns of Borodyanka and Irpin, both of which were occupied by Russian forces in March, as well as holding talks with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.


Lithuanian State and private institutions have been enduring a denial-of-service cyber-attack.

“It is very likely that attacks of similar or greater intensity will continue in the coming days, especially in the transportation, energy and financial sectors,” reported the National Cyber-Security Center.

Russian hacker group Killnet has claimed responsibility, claiming retaliation for Lithuania preventing the transfer of European Union-sanctioned Russian technology and commodities across its territory into the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad.


Addressing G7 leaders at their summit via video link, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has asked them to “not lower the pressure and to keep sanctioning Russia massively and heavily.”

Zelenskiy said the leaders needed to do their utmost to defeat Russia’s invasion of Ukraine by the end of the year. He noted that conditions in winter would be tougher for a fightback against Russian occupation.

Asking for anti-aircraft defence systems and security guarantees as well as sanctions on Russia, Zelenskiy emphasized, “We will only negotiate from a position of strength.”


In addition to its ban on imports of Russian gold (see Original Entry), Japan is expanding its freeze on Russian assets to cover an additional 70 Russian individuals and organizations. A ban on exports to 90 military-related entities is being implemented.


Ukraine’s military says Russia has lost 35,000 troops in its invasion.

The military claimed the destruction of 1,552 tanks, 3,687 armored fighting vehicles, 771 artillery pieces, 243 multiple launch rocket systems, 9,139 surface-to-air missiles, 184 helicopters, 217 airplanes, 636 drones, and 14 warships.


In its latest report, UK military intelligence assesses that Russia is likely to rely on reserve forces in coming weeks, using volunteers to fill out some battalions.

However, despite a shortage of reservists, the Kremlin is reluctant to order a general mobilization, according to the British analysts.


Russian shelling has killed two women in the Kharkiv region in northeast Ukraine, says Governor Oleh Synyehubov.

A Russian missile hit a school yard, and three other civilians “received explosive injuries”.


Russia has defaulted on its foreign debt for the first time since the 1917 Revolution.

On Sunday night, Moscow missed a deadline to meet a 30-day grace period on interest payments of $100 million on two Eurobonds.

Taiwanese holders of Russian Eurobonds said on Monday that they had not received interest payments which are due.

In late May, the US Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets blocked Russia from using its foreign currency reserves to make the payments. Moscow has attempted to pay in roubles.

Russia owes about $40 billion in foreign bonds. Moscow held about $640 billion in foreign currency and gold reserves when it invaded Ukraine, but about half of that is held abroad and is now frozen.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov insisted that the default is “not our problem”.


Ukrainian forces have reportedly struck a Russian-occupied drilling platform in the Black Sea for the second time in a week.

The platform is operated by Chernomorneftegaz, the company which Russian-backed officials seized from Ukraine’s national gas operator Naftogaz when Moscow occupied Crimea in 2014.

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Russia sent a message to the G7 nations as well as Ukraine on Sunday morning with missile strikes on the capital Kyiv.

As G7 leaders were about to meet in southern Germany, the Russians struck with four missiles at 6:22 a.m. The heaviest damage and casualties were in the historic Shevchenkivskyi district, with its universities, restaurants, and art galleries.

At least one person was killed in a nine-story residential building: a man whose wife and 7-year-old daughter were injured. At least six people were wounded, including a Russian woman.

In his nightly video address to the nation, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy spoke of the injured girl:

She was not threatened by anything in our country. She was completely safe, until Russia itself decided that everything was equally hostile to them now — women, children, kindergartens, houses, hospitals, railways.

The strikes were the first on the capital since June 5. Ukrainians, journalists, and analysts noted the link between Russia’s attacks and high-profile foreign interventions over Moscow’s invasion, including a speech by US President Joe Biden on March 26 and UN Secretary General António Guterres’ visit to Kyiv and nearby Bucha — where Russian troops carried out mass killings of civilians — on April 28.

Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said the Kremlin was trying to “intimidate Ukrainians” before the G7 meeting and a NATO summit in Madrid from Tuesday.

The Russians have escalated missile attacks across the country in recent days, trying to break Ukrainian resistance and infrastructure as Moscow’s forces try to seize territory in the east of the country.

Russian missiles also struck near Cherkasy in central Ukraine on Sunday, hitting a bridge across the Dnipro River connecting the frontline in the east with the west. One person was killed and five wounded.

Immediate Response by G7 and Zelenskiy

However, Putin is likely to receive an immediate response of defiance on Monday. Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy will address the G7 — Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the UK, and the US as well as the European Union’s Ursula von der Leyen — on Monday.

Zelenskiy spoke on Saturday night about Russia’s escalating missile attacks and the need for more military assistance to Kyiv: “The air defense systems – the modern systems that our partners have – should not be on training grounds or in storage, but in Ukraine, where they are needed now, needed more than anywhere else in the world.”

After yesterday’s strikes, Ukrainian officials called for the G7 and the European Union to act. Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba responded that Sunday’s summit of G7 nations “must respond with more sanctions on Russia and more heavy arms for Ukraine. Russia’s sick imperialism must be defeated.”

Zelenskiy’s Chief of Staff Andriy Yermak added, “We appreciate embargo on Russinan gold exports, but gas embargo should be included in the new European Union sanctions package.”

And Zelenskiy said in his Sunday night video address:

We need a powerful air defence — modern, fully effective. Which can ensure complete protection against these missiles. We talk about this every day with our partners. There are already some agreements. And partners need to move faster if they are really partners, not observers.

Delays in the transfer of weapons to our state, any restrictions are actually an invitation for Russia to strike again and again.

G7 nations such as the UK, the US, and Japan announced a ban on imports of Russian gold on Sunday. Moscow earned $15.4 billion from the transactions in 2021, and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken estimated the revenue would be $19 billion this year.

The leaders are also considering an international price cap on oil to restrict Russian revenues while a phase-out on purchases, including by the EU, is implemented.