Fire burns near a high-voltage line after a Russian airstrike outside Kharkiv, Ukraine, March 22, 2024 (Sofiia Gatilova/OSV/Reuters)

Saturday’s Coverage: Zelenskiy — US Aid Delay Will “Force Us to Retreat Step by Step”

Map: Institute for the Study of War


Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has been among those in Bucha on Sunday, marking the second anniversary of the liberation of the Kyiv suburb.

Russian occupiers killed hundreds of civilians in Bucha in March 2022, throwing some bodies in mass graves and leaving others lying in the streets and in the front gardens of homes.

The memorial was at the monument with the names of the 509 victims identified so far.

See also Ukraine War, Day 401: Ukrainians Remember Victims of Russia’s Mass Killing in Bucha

Zelenskiy said to those assembled:

This is a war for our state’s right to exist, as well as for everyone’s right to life. This is a war for the dignity of our people and every nation seeking its own destiny.

The bodies of our people, which were found on the streets of Bucha, demonstrated that no one in the world can stay away from this battle. Because it is here, in Ukraine, through the defense our people, our lives, and our state, that humanity is prevailing.

To unleash such aggressions against others, Russia first destroyed its own morality and turned violence and hatred into its ideology. Such systems do not simply stop. They are brought to a stop by force. Unity stops them. Determination and an understanding of what they want to destroy is what stops them. I thank everyone in the world who really helps us.

Earlier in the day, Zelenskiy posted best wishes for Easter, “It is a holiday that reminds us of the power of the spirit that will not allow darkness to prevail. It will not allow the will to be overshadowed. It unites families, nations, and continents.”

After the visit to Bucha and nearby Irpin, he said in a video statement:


Russia’s overnight missile attacks (see 0742 GMT) have killed a man and damaged an administrative building in the Lviv region in western Ukraine.

Governor Maksym Kozytskyi said other victims may be under rubble.

Energy infrastructure, attacked on March 24 and March 29, was again targeted.


Authorities in Russia’s second city St. Petersburg are carrying out mass deportations of foreign nationals.

The human rights group Department One reports on “Operation Anti-Migrant”, identifying and expelling foreigners who do not have legal residency in Russia. A lawyer explained:

You can’t get near the temporary detention centers for foreigners. There are a lot of specialized vehicles as well as buses to take people to the airport. They’re also carrying out raids on dormitories and apartments. All the detention centers are overcrowded….

Just yesterday, more than 64 foreign citizens were deported from St. Petersburg’s Vyborgsky district alone. Two full planes took off.

Several more buses filled with migrants were sent to the airport on Friday.

Spokesperson Daria Lebedeva confirmed that St. Petersburg courts ordered the remand of 418 foreign nationals to detention centers for their eventual expulsion. Another 48 were fined and commanded to leave on their own.

In Moscow, residents with Central Asian ancestry are reporting an increase in threats against them, following the arrest of four Tajikistani nationals over the Crocus City concert hall attack on March 22 that killed 143 people.

Tajik community leaders have advised diaspora members to avoid going outside at night for their own safety, with security forces treating people with “Asian features” with increased suspicion and some Russian citizens refusing to travel with taxi drivers from Tajikstan.

Employees of the barber shop where one of the Crocus City suspects worked have been bombarded with threats. Its director, Yamina Safiyeva, said, “People are calling and wishing for my death. I’m pregnant and I don’t know what to do. I’m afraid to go outside.”


The Ukraine Air Force says air defenses downed 9 of 14 cruise missiles and 9 of 11 Iran-type attack drones fired by Russia overnight.

Ukraine’s Southern Command said energy infrastructure was damaged in the Odesa region and an agricultural facility in the Kherson region.


Three civilians have been killed in the past 48 hours by Russian shelling of the Donetsk region in eastern Ukraine.

One was slain on Friday in Maksymilianivka, and two on Saturday in Krasnohorivka.

ORIGINAL ENTRY: Two waves of widespread Russian missile and drone strikes in the past nine days have significantly damaged Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.

The destruction, from the assaults on March 22 and March 29, is the most extensive since Vladimir Putin’s “energy war” from autumn 2022 to spring 2023 knocked off half of Ukraine’s grid at one point.

Ukraine’s largest private energy firm, DTEK, said on Saturday that five of its six plants have been damaged or destroyed, reducing generating capacity by 80%. The company said repairs could take up to 18 months.

The electric company Tsentrenergo said Russian missile strikes on March 22 had destroyed all power units and auxiliary equipment at the Zmiivska Thermal Power Plant in the Kharkiv region in northeast Ukraine.

The strikes also heavily damaged Ukraine’s largest hydroelectric complex, the Dnipro Hydroelectric Power Plant.

Ukraine War, Day 765: Russia Attacks With 26 Missiles and 58 Drones

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In his nightly video address to the nation, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskiy spoke about the “heinous attacks” by “Russian terrorists…in an attempt to drain Ukraine’s power”.

He thanked energy workers, repair teams, and construction workers for working “tirelessly throughout the week”, and addressed the international community.

We sent necessary signals and concrete requests to all of our partners who have the necessary air defense systems and missiles. America, Europe, and other partners all know exactly what we need, and they all understand how critical it is to assist Ukraine in defending itself against these strikes right now.