(NEW YORK) — Russian President Vladimir Putin’s “special military operation” into neighboring Ukraine began on Feb. 24, with Russian forces invading from Belarus, to the north, and Russia, to the east. Ukrainian troops have offered “stiff resistance,” according to U.S. officials.
The Russian military last month launched a full-scale ground offensive in eastern Ukraine’s disputed Donbas region, attempting to capture the strategic port city of Mariupol and to secure a coastal corridor to the Moscow-annexed Crimean Peninsula.
Here’s how the news is developing. All times Eastern:
May 10, 6:30 am
US suspends tariffs on Ukrainian steel
The U.S. will temporarily suspend 232 tariffs on Ukrainian steel for one year, Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo announced Monday.
Ukraine’s steel industry is one of the foundations of the country’s economy, employing 1 in 13 Ukrainians, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. Some of Ukraine’s largest steel communities have been among those “hardest hit by Putin’s barbarism,” the U.S. Department of Commerce said in a press release, and the steel mill in Mariupol has become a “lasting symbol of Ukraine’s determination to resist Russia’s aggression.”
“Steelworkers are among the world’s most resilient — whether they live in Youngstown or Mariupol,” Raimondo said.
The pledge to slash tariffs “is a signal to the Ukrainian people that we are committed to helping them thrive in the face of Putin’s aggression,” she said, “and that their work will create a stronger Ukraine, both today and in the future.”
Ukraine is currently losing about $170 million every day due to blocked ports and the country’s export potential has fallen by more than half, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmysal said on Monday.
Ukraine also submitted a several-thousand-page questionnaire, the second part of the answers, that must be completed by countries aspiring to join the European Union, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Monday during his nightly address.
“It usually takes months. But we did everything in a few weeks,” Zelenskyy said.
The Ukrainian president held talks with EU leaders on Monday and claimed Ukraine could be granted EU candidate status as early as June.
Russia running out of missiles
Russia has used up about half of its existing missiles during its invasion of Ukraine, Ukrainian Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Malyar said Monday. But the Russians still maintain the capacity and a certain supply of components to replenish some of their depleted arsenal, Malyar added.
The U.K. Ministry of Defense also stated in its Monday intelligence update that Russia’s stockpile of precision-guided munitions “has likely been heavily depleted.” Instead, the Russian military is now using “readily available but ageing munitions that are less reliable, less accurate and more easily intercepted.”
Russia will likely struggle to replace the precision weaponry it has already expended, the ministry said.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson tweeted Monday that he has “never been more certain that Ukraine will win,” adding that Britain will stand “shoulder-to-shoulder with Ukraine for as long as it takes.”
Fighting continued on May 9 at the Azovstal steel plant while “some occupiers were walking along the streets” of the surrounding city of Mariupol parading with flags and Ribbons of Saint George, a traditional Russian military symbol, said Petro Andriushchenko, the Mariupol mayor’s advisor. Russian forces on Monday tried to blow up the bridge used to evacuate people from the steel plant, trying to “cut off our defenders from the possibility to exit,” Andriushchenko said.
There are still more than 100 civilians trapped in Azovstal, Pavlo Kyrylenko, who heads the Donetsk military administration, told local media.
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