Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in a meeting with Uruguayan counterpart Luis Lacalle Pou, December 10, 2023, Buenos Aires, Argentina (Ukrinform)

Sunday’s Coverage: Kyiv Prepares for the Long Fight v. Russia’s Invasion

Map: Institute for the Study of War


Sweden is sending humanitarian aid of 1.4 billion Swedish krona ($133 million) to Ukraine.

Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson announced the package, the largest in Swedish history, at a press conference on Monday.

“The cold winter must be met with our solidarity. It is about both their freedom and ours. Ukraine must win the war and Russia must lose the war,” foreign policy spokesperson Joar Forssell said.

Of the assistance, 900 million Swedish krona ($86 million) will support energy, housing, health, and transport infrastructure through the World Bank’s Ukraine Relief, Recovery, Reconstruction, and Reform Trust Fund.


Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has thanked the UK and Norway for launching a maritime defense coalition to bolster Kyiv’s shipping and naval operations.

The UK confirmed it is transferring two Royal Navy minehunter ships to the Ukrainian navy.


Amnesty International has documented the risk to education, and the safety of children and parents, from Russia’s occupation of Ukrainian territory.

Russian authorities have carried out brutal reprisals against those trying to continue Ukrainian education. Parents have hidden children to avoid them being adopted in Russia, forcibly taken to “re-education” institutions, or enrolled in schools with the Russian curriculum.

The report is based on evidence from 23 education workers and 16 families with school-age children who are or were living under Russian occupation.

A regional education official said teachers, students and parents turned into “partisans digging holes in their gardens to hide laptops and mobile phones or hiding in the attics and old sheds to catch the mobile signal”.

A school librarian said she secretly arranged meetings with students to give them books, risking the arbitrary searches of Russian military patrols in the streets.

A mother who tried home schooling was confronted by men dressed in Russian military uniforms who warned her child Kyrylo, “In case you do not show up at the school tomorrow, the bus will come the following week and take you to an orphanage in Russia”.

When Kyrylo returned to school, she found it was decorated with Russian State symbols and armed personnel had been stationed at the door and inside the building.

A teacher from the Zaporizhzhia region in southern Ukraine, who left occupied territory in July 2022 but still gives online classes to children in the area, explained how students are forced to learn and sing the Russian national anthem. Those who refused are threatened with being taken away from their parents for “re-education in Russian orphanages”.

A notice at the school in Berdyansk commanded students, “Look around you. You can see that Ukraine has destroyed Kharkov, Mariupol and other cities. If you do not want Ukraine to kill you, tell us everything you see and know about it.”


Russia has confirmed that next March’s staged Presidential election will be held in four occupied regions of Ukraine.

The Central Election Commission said voting wll take place in the Zaporizhia and Kherson regions in the south and the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in the east, all “annexed” by Vladimir Putin in September 2022.

Ukraine has liberated areas of all the regions except Luhansk since then.


During his talks in Argentina, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy also spoke by phone with French President Emmanuel Macron and European Commission head Ursula von der Leyen.

Zelenskiy posted that he thanked Macron for French military aid and discussed the next military package from Paris. Zelenskiy stressed the importance of this week’s European Council meeting which hopes to open negotiations for Ukraine’s accession.


The Ukraine Air Force says it downed all 18 attack drones and eight missiles launched by Russia overnight.

The missiles were fired, probably from Russia’s Bryansk region, on the Kyiv region at around 4 a.m. The Iran-made drones were launched from occupied Crimea.

Officials in Kyiv said a 31-year-old man sustained shrapnel injuries from falling debris, and three people were injured by shattering glass. A fire was started in an unfinished residential building.

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Rallying support for Ukraine’s 21 1/2-month resistance of Russia’s invasion, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has met Latin American leaders in Argentina.

The formal reason for Zelenskiy’s visit was attendance at the inauguration of hard-right Argentinian President Javier Milei, elected last month.

But Zelenskiy spent Sunday in a series of meetings, beginning with the Paraguayan and Uruguayan leaders. They considered Zelenskiy’s ten-point Peace Formula for a resolution of the invasion and restoration of Ukrainian territory; trade and economic cooperation; protection of shipping through the International Maritime Organization; and further discussions next month.

Further talks followed with Ecuador’s Daniel Noboa “in the fields of security, digitalization, trade in agricultural products”, and with Argentina’s Milei.

Zelenskiy told the new President, “In times of war, it is challenging to find time and travel halfway around the globe. But we heard you, your signals in the Parliament and your personal energy in support of Ukraine, our people who are fighting against Russian aggression.”

However, the most intriguing encounter may have been with Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán, a long-time ally of Vladimir Putin, on the sidelines of the inauguration.

While Hungary is a member of the European Union and NATO, the Orbán Government is holding up EU aid to Kyiv, sanctions over Russia’s invasion, Swedish accession to NATO, and negotiations for Ukraine’s membership in the EU.

The Ukrainian State outlet notes tersely, “The President’s Office is currently not commenting on the details of the communication between Zelensky and Orbán.”

Zelenskiy said only, “I spoke with Orban as frankly as possible.”

Zelenskiy To Meet Biden

Zelenskiy will travel to Washington on Monday and meet President Joe Biden in the White House on Tuesday.

His office posted, “Volodymyr Zelensky will focus on ensuring the unity of the United States, Europe and the world around supporting Ukraine in its defense against Russian terror and in strengthening the international order based on rules and respect for the sovereignty of each nation.”

Republicans in Congress are holding up Biden’s request for budget authorization of $61.4 billion to support Ukraine, in a $106 billion package which also includes aid for Israel, Taiwan, and the Asia-Pacific region.

The GOP politicians are effectively blackmailing the Biden Administration and Kyiv by demanding a priority on draconian border measures punishing asylum seekers and migrants.

See also Ukraine War, Day 653: Russia Celebrates Republicans Blocking US Aid to Kyiv

Meanwhile, associates of Hungary’s Orbán will be in Washington meeting Republicans, including members of Congress, to press for the end of US military support for Ukraine.

A “diplomatic source close to the Hungarian embassy” said, “Orbán is confident that the Ukraine aid will not pass in Congress. That is why he is trying to block assistance from the EU as well.”