Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy meets Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the G7 summit, Hiroshima, Japan, May 20, 2023 (AP)

EA on BBC: The G7 and the Defense of Ukraine

Saturday’s Coverage: US Backs International Training of Ukrainian Pilots on Fighter Jets

Map: Institute for the Study of War


The latest Russian shelling across the Kherson region in southern Ukraine has killed a 55-year-old man in the village of Kozatske.


Latvia and Estonia have announced they will seek advanced German-made air defense systems from fellow NATO members.


Responding to reporters’ questions, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has emphasized that his remarks earlier today, about the situation in Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine, were misreported.

I clearly understand what has taken place in Bakhmut.

I cannot share with you the tactical views of our military.

Bakhmut is not occupied by Russia Federation as of today. There are no two or three interpretations of those words.

He explained that photographs of the ruins of Hiroshima from World War II “remind me of Bakhmut and other similar settlements and towns”.

This is just a totally destroyed area, nothing left, not a single person left.

Today it’s a tragedy but in the future there will be reconstruction and recovery.


Volodymyr Zelenskiy has said in his address to the G7 summit….

Our heroic people are turning history around so we can make war itself become a shadow….

We dream of returning our territories just as we have regained our northern territories that were occupied by Russia, we must regain our eastern and southern territories.

We dream of returning our people now in Russian captivity. We dream of peace after our victory.

I am here in Hiroshima so the world can hear the Ukrainian call for unity. Russia has trampled on everything that is civilized.


Ukrainian Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar says Ukrainian forces have partially surrounded Russia’s Wagner Group mercenaries in Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine, as well as continuing to hold a “private sector” in the city, defending industrial and infrastructure facilities.

Maliar posted on Telegram after Vladimir Putin tried to claim “victory”, following the assertion of Wagner head Yevgeny Prigozhin that his fighters have completed the occupation of the center.

Maliar noted that Ukrainian troops are continuing last week’s advances to the north and south of Bakhmut and have claimed part of the heights.

Our forces have the city in a semi-encirclement, which gives us the opportunity to destroy the enemy.

Therefore, the enemy has to defend himself in the part of the city he controls.

Gen. Oleksandr Syrskyi, the commander of Ukraine’s ground forces, echoed that the units are closer to a “tactical encirclement” of Bakhmut.

He said Ukrainians hold an “insignificant” part of the city, but that it is a foothold permitting entry as the battlefield situation changes.


A spokesperson says that Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s remarks were misreported, and the President did not confirm Russian occupation of all of Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine.

Reporter’s question: Russians said they have taken Bakhmut.

President’s reply: I think no.

In this way, the president denied the capture of Bakhmut.


Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has apparently confirmed Russian occupation of all of the city center of Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine.

Asked at the G7 summit if any of the center was still being defended, Zelenskiy said, “I think no. For today, it is only in our hearts.”

On Saturday, Ukrainian officials pushed back the claim by Yevgeny Prigozhin, the head of the Wagner Group mercenaries, that his fighters had seized all of Bakhmut after a year-long Russian assault.

Ukrainian Deputy Defense minister Hanna Maliar said on Saturday that the situation was critical, but “as of now, our defenders control some industrial and infrastructure facilities in the area and the private sector” in the southwest of the city.

If Prigozhin’s claim is true, any Russian victory — achieved at the high cost of lives and resources in Wagner’s “human wave” assaults — may be Pyrrhic. In the past week, Ukrainian forces have liberated territory to the north and south of Bakhmut.

The advance not only precluded any Russian attempt to surround the Ukrainian defenders, but raised questions about the future of Wagner’s fighters in the city center.

Even while announcing “victory” on Saturday, Prigozhin said his fighters will withdraw from Bakhmut on Thursday, handing over positions to conventional Russian forces.

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Pursuing further support to defeat Russia’s invasion, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy is holding a series of meetings with other national leaders at the G7 summit in Hiroshima, Japan.

On Saturday, the G7 — the US, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Canada, and Japan — reiterated in their draft final communiqué, the G7 leaders have said of Vladimir Putin’s invasion.

We once again condemn in the strongest possible terms the war of aggression by Russia against Ukraine, which constitutes a serious violation of international law, including the UN Charter.

Russia’s brutal war of aggression represents a threat to the whole world in breach of fundamental norms, rules and principles of the international community. We reaffirm our unwavering support for Ukraine for as long as it takes to bring a comprehensive, just and lasting peace.

The bloc set out furter sanctions against Russia, supported by announcements by the US and the UK which added more than 300 individual and entities from Russia and its supporters to the blacklist. Alongside the G7, Australia also announced further measures on Friday.

But with a Ukrainian counter-offensive expected, Zelenskiy is also seeking a commitment to the provision of advanced jet fighters, including American-made F16s.

The US made a significant move towards that breakthrough supply, sought by Zelenskiy for months, with the announcement that it will back international training for Ukrainian pilots on the jets.

Zelenskiy will meet US President Joe Biden on Sunday afternoon for bilateral discussions. On Saturday, the US announced a new allocation of $375 million in military assistance for Ukraine, including ammunition, artillery, and vehicles.

The Ukraine President is also trying to win support from India and Brazil, who have refused to criticize Vladimir Putin’s invasion. On Saturday, he conferred with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

While still not taking a stand against Russia’s aggression, Modi told Zelenskiy, “I understand your pain and the pain of Ukrainian citizens very well. I can assure you that to resolve this India and, me personally, will do whatever we can do.”

In his nightly address to the nation, Zelenskiy expressed hope that Modi will go farther, “I believe that India will participate in the restoration of the international order based on the rules that are needed by all free nations.”

The President also met Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, French President Emmanuel Macron, South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol, and the European Union’s Charles Michel.