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UKRAINE WAR BULLETIN - February 26, 2022 - 10 a.m. EST
Embassy of Ukraine in the USA
President of Ukraine
"We continue to work and I will now briefly explain what is happening in our country. We knew that this night would be difficult, because Russia was supposed to and did use all its reserves in order to cause maximum damage to as many cities as possible. So far, I can tell they have failed - the Armed Forces of Ukraine together with the National Police of Ukraine have complete control of the situation and the entire territory of Ukraine.
Briefly on the directions of attacks.
First, Southern direction. Southern direction. Heavy fights are taking place in the cities of Kherson, Mykolaiv, Odesa. It is obvious why this is so. This area is considered to be a top priority for Russia. They wanted to gain a foothold there, but there is no sign of success. And there won’t be.
Second. Kyiv is the number one priority, as we understand it today because the key goal of the "special operation" declared by the Russian Federation is the demolition of Ukraine's political and military leadership. For this purpose, an attempt was made to bring the maximum amount of equipment and forces of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation to Kyiv. For the moment we can say the following - both in the city of Kyiv and on the outskirts of Kyiv, the situation is under control. The situation in the city - there are separate activities of sabotage-reconnaissance groups. Representatives of the National Police are actively working against them and representatives of territorial defense groups' work is no less effective. The Armed Forces of Ukraine are actively working on the outskirts of Kyiv.
Mariupol direction. Fierce fighting is going on around the city of Mariupol, but there is no chance that Mariupol will side with the Russian Federation or be captured by the enemy armed forces. In addition, air alarm signals were constantly working throughout the night - because the Russian army uses artillery, including jet artillery, to strike directly at Ukrainian cities. Meanwhile, I want to say the following. At 7 am on February 26, despite the number of reserves of the Russian Federation that were thrown into active actions, the armed forces of this country did not receive any tactical and operational advantage. This shows that Ukraine has not just survived, Ukraine is winning. We have active Armed Forces, National Police, and territorial self-defense groups - people know how to defend their country. The President of Ukraine works permanently and today, as well as yesterday and the day before yesterday, he will have a series of talks with representatives of our Western partners to form the most effective coalition against the Russian Federation. The Government is working effectively to address situational economic problems. The country is managed and controlled. This is important and we need to understand this, because there are so many different fakes designed to scare people, cause panic and make us disbelieve in the possibility of our victory”.
President V.Zelenskyy rejected the offer of his evacuation. He underlined: "I need ammunition, not transport".
President Zelenskyy’s morning address
We survived, the fighting continues in many cities and regions of our country. Kyiv and key cities around the capital are controlled by our forces. In our streets in the skies of Kyiv, Vasylkiv, Vyzhhorod, in the fields a real battle for Kyiv continued.
The enemy used all capabilities against us - missiles, fighters, drones, artillery, armored vehicles, subversives, airlifted force. The occupants are hitting residential neighborhoods, including with jet artillery. They are trying to destroy energy facilities.
The people of Ukraine have already earned and have the right to become a member of the European Union, and this will be the key evidence of our country's support. I discussed this today with Charles Michel, Ursula von der Leyen, Emmanuel Macron.
The anti-war coalition is effective, weapons and equipment are coming to Ukraine. We already have almost full support from EU countries for disconnecting Russia from SWIFT. I hope that Germany and Hungary will have the courage to support this decision.
In each of our cities the occupiers receive a severe rebuff - Uman, Odesa, Kherson, Mykolayiv, Donbas, Kharkiv, Sumy, Chernihiv, Kyiv.
Every Ukrainian needs to remember one thing - if you can stop and destroy the occupants - do it.
All friends of Ukraine who want to join the defense - come, we will give you weapons. All the details of how to implement this will be announced in the nearest future.
Office of the President
Transcript of the press briefing of the Office of the President of Ukraine
Mykhailo Podoliak, advisor to the head of the President of Ukraine:
We had an understanding that the previous night would be difficult as the Russian Federation had to use and have used all of its resources and reserves to cause us maximum losses on large territories. This didn’t happen. The Armed Forces together with the National Police control the situation and the territory over our state in full.
South – serious fights are happening in Kherson, Mykolaiv and Odesa. This is a priority direction for Russia. They had an intention to take control over there but there are no signs they succeeded. They will not succeed.
Kyiv is a priority direction No1. The key aim of the “special operation” is a liquidation of the political and military authority of Ukraine. For achieving this there was an attempt to pull up to Kyiv the maximum amount of military ammunition and armed forces of Russia. Currently we can state that in and outside Kyiv city the situation is controlled. We notice actions of separate secret subversive groups in Kyiv against which the National police and the Territorial self-defense units representatives work effectively; while in its suburbs they are effectively supported by the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
There are serious battles for Mariupol, but as of this moment there is no chance that Mariupol will surrender or will be seized by Russia.
Throughout the night in many cities, the air raid alarms were working as the Russian army is actively using the artillery, including reactive, and aviation to carry out the direct air strikes against the Ukrainian cities. Nonetheless, I would like to stress that as of 7 am 26 February, despite the amount of sources and reserves used for active operation by the Russian Federation, is no tactic or operational advantage was gained by its armed forces. It means that Ukraine not only persevered, but is winning in this battle. The Armed Forces, the National Police and the Territorial Self-Defence Units are working actively. Ukrainian people know how to protect their state. The President of Ukraine, as like yesterday and before, will have a large number of negotiations with representatives of our western allies to form a extremely effective coalition against the Russian Federation. The Government is working on management of separate economic issues. The State is manageable and controlled. This is important and we have to realise that a huge amount of fake news are circulating to frighten and cause panic among the people, and try to discourage from believing in the victory.
Deputy Prime Minister - Minister for Reintegration of the Occupied Territories of Ukraine Ms. Iryna Vereshchuk has addressed the International Committee of the Red Cross to assist in resolving the humanitarian situation that arised due to a large number of the Russian occupants corpses. The ICRC was invited to Ukraine to record the number and ensure the delivery of remains to their homeland in Russia.
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Call with my French counterpart @JY_LeDrian. France supports banning Russia from SWIFT. I urged to immediately introduce the third package of EU sanctions to stop Russian invasion. France is also ready to supply weapons and military equipment to help Ukraine defend itself.
We did it. Cyprus confirmed it will not block the decision to ban Russia from SWIFT. Ukrainian diplomacy keeps working 24/7 to achieve important decisions and protect Ukraine from Russian invaders.
The Russian occupier forces continue the offensive operation against Ukraine.
The enemy has begun redeploying reserve component on the areas bordering Ukraine and continues to carry out air strikes on airfields, units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the eastern part of Ukraine and in the northern part of Kyiv region. Single air strikes were carried out in the districts of SUMY, POLTAVA, MARIUPOL. From the Black Sea, the enemy launched naval-based cruise missiles “Caliber” on Ukrainian territory.
The tactical aviation of the Russian Federation is controlled from the territory of Belarus and the temporary occupied territory of Crimea. There are battalion tactical units of the 35th Combined Arms Army of the Eastern Military District in the MOZYR area, which can be used to strike targets on the territory of Ukraine.
The temporary location of dozens of tank in the area of SHUMSKE and MLRS’s BM-21 "Grad" in the area of KOSIVSCHINA has been established. The enemy has repeatedly used field level aviation in the areas of YUZHNY and ODESSA for strikes at OZERNE airfield and civilian infrastructure facilities in the Kyiv region.
In the Slobozhansky direction, the Armed Forces of Ukraine units stopped the enemy’s offensive and continue to conduct defensive battles in the Kharkov region. Street fighting is being continued in Okhtyrka.
In the coastal direction in the area of KOBLEVO, 28th Mechanized Brigade units have destroyed an enemy’s boat and up to 20 soldiers of the sabotage group.
An engineering unit of the Naval Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has mined landing-accessible beach.
The Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine is repelling enemy air strikes, the Russian military transport plane IL-76MD with an assault-landing troops has been destroyed. Ukrainian Air Force is continuing to conduct systematic combat actions for inflicting casualties on the enemy and military equipment in Kyiv, Chernihiv and Kherson regions. The Joint Force units are conducting a defensive operation and holding positions along the entire line of demarcation.
The estimated losses of the enemy are: aircraft - 14 units, helicopters - 8 units, tanks - 102 units, armored vehicle - 536 units, howitzer - 15 units, SAM “BUK” - 1 unit.
Air Force Command of UA Armed Forces: Today around midnight, in the region of the Joint Forces Operation, a S-300 missile complex of the Ukrainian Air Force struck down two enemy targets — a helicopter and a Su-25 assault plane of the Russian army. At 12:30 am, a Ukrainian fighter aircraft Su-27 has successfully attacked a military transport plane IL-76 MD of the Russian occupation army and has defeated the enemy!As of this moment, fierce battles are happening in Vasylkiv, Kyiv region, where Russian occupants are trying to land their troops.
Operational information as of 06:00, February 26, 2022 regarding the Russian invasion (Land Forces of Ukraine). The Russian occupier continues the offensive against Ukraine.
The enemy has began redeploying reserve units in the areas bordering Ukraine and continues to carry out air strikes on airfields, troops of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the eastern Ukraine and in the northern part of Kyiv region. Single air strikes were carried out in the districts of Sumy, Poltava, Mariupol. The enemy launched “Kalibr” naval-based cruise missiles from the Black Sea to the territory of Ukraine.
The tactical aviation of the Russian Federation is controlled from the territory of Belarus and from the temporarily occupied territories in Crimea. In the Mozyr area there are battalion tactical groups of the 35th Combined Arms Army of the Eastern Military District, which can be used to strike targets on the territory of Ukraine.
The temporary location of dozens of units of tanks in the area of Shumske and that of the BM-21 "Grad" field rocket systems in the area of Kosivshchyna has been revealed.
The enemy has repeatedly used operational and tactical aircraft in the areas of Yuzhny and Odesa, against the Ozerne airfield, and against the civilian infrastructure facilities in the Kyiv region. In the direction of Slobozhanshchyna an operative group of the Armed Forces of Ukraine halted the enemy's offensive and continues to conduct defensive battles in the Kharkiv region. City warfare continues in Okhtyrka.
As a result of the fire by units of the 28 Mechanized Brigade, a boat and up to 20 personnel of the enemy's sabotage and reconnaissance groups were destroyed in the coastal area of Koblevo
A group in charge of engineering barriers of the Naval Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has mined accessible landing sites.
The Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine is repelling enemy air strikes, the IL-76MD military transport plane with a landing party of the Russian occupation troops has been destroyed.
Ukrainian military captured two saboteurs in the Koblevo area (Head of Public Council at the Odesa Regional State Administration)
Police officers in the Kyiv metro informed the public that they had lowered the gates at the Beresteiska, Shulyavska, and Universit metro stations to eliminate the threatening situation. (Suspilne news)
At the Beresteiska metro station, the 101st Brigade destroyed: two cars, two trucks with tanks, a tank. "Everything is calm; we put them all down" - Land Forces of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Hromadske
The General Staff
Early morning, two enemy targets were shot down in the area of the Joint Forces operation by the S-300 anti-aircraft missile system of the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine - a helicopter and a Su-25 attack aircraft of the Russian occupation forces.
Also, a Su-27 fighter of the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine successfully attacked the military transport aircraft IL-76 MD of the Russian occupation forces and destroyed the enemy.
Another Su-25 of the Russian occupiers, flying in the direction of Vinnytsia, was destroyed by a Ukrainian pilot of a Su-27.
Fighting is currently underway in the town of Vasylkiv in the Kyiv region, where the occupiers are trying to land an airborne force.
The fighting is taking place on the streets of Kyiv. Everywhere the enemy receives a decent rebuff and incurs losses.
In particular, a convoy of 2 cars, 2 trucks with ammunition and a tank were destroyed near the Brest metro station
Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine: "Our soldiers defend the city borders heroically," – told the head of the Kharkiv Regional State Administration Oleh Syniehubov about the situation in the Kharkiv region. In two days of the Russian invasion 82 people were injured in Kharkiv region: 59 civilians and 23 military. Also 11 people died: 4 military and 7 civilians. Occupation troops continued fighting in the direction of Derhachi, Tsyrkuny and from the direction of Chuhuiv. There were attempts to break through the defenses of the Vysoke. Several enemy tanks entered the city and were subsequently destroyed, our troops regained control. Yesterday the Russian occupation forces lost more than a hundred units of armored vehicles and hundreds of soldiers. Occuping forces aimed their artillery at social infrastructure, shelling hit the blood center in Oleksiyivka and the Regional hospital for children. Residential buildings in Saltivka and HTZ districts of Kharkiv were damaged. There were attempts to destroy military facilities in the city center. We note damage of the gas pipelines, electric networks, water pipelines and other critical infrastructure of the towns and villages of the region. Repairing squads have already begun emergency renovations.
500 people are currently in Shchastya, Luhansk region, suffering from shortages of bread and other goods. The essential goods, e.g. bread and water, have been supplied by the emergency services workers from Petropavlivka. At the same time, the building of the 32nd Fire Department is damaged. The rescue teams are working to secure civilians with everything needed. As of February 25, 200 people have been evacuated.
The Security Service of Ukraine
SSU obtained intelligence information from the temporarily occupied Donetsk.
Occupant forces are handing out gasmasks to local militants and the Russian military. There is a possibility of provocation - blowing up industrial tanks with chemicals.
It is planned to accuse the Ukrainian Armed Forces of sabotage against the civilian population. We declare that, unlike the Russian occupiers, Ukraine does not resort to such methods.
We urge our citizens to be vigilant in the temporarily occupied territory
The State Border Guard Service
· The enemy is trying to actively explore the Black Sea and Danube coasts by drones.
· Early on February 26, the activity of enemy drones was observed in the area of the Izmail border detachment.
· Unlike drones from a height of about 1 km explore the Black Sea coast and the Danube River.
The Russian Navy Service has closed an area in the northwestern part of the Black Sea to conduct a 'counterterrorist operation.' However, it is the Ukrainian coast that is located there, not the Russian one."
Attack on the residential building in Solomyanka area of Kyiv.
Today State Emergency Service of Ukraine received information about the missile attack on Lobanovsky prospect 6A in a high-rise residential building (17-18 floors). Preliminarily, there are no causalties. The evacuation is taking place. Source: State Emergency Service of Ukraine
Dmytro Kuleba (twitter): "Kyiv, our splendid, peaceful city, survived another night under attacks by Russian ground forces, missiles. One of them has hit a residential apartment in Kyiv. I demand the world: fully isolate Russia, expel ambassadors, oil embargo, ruin its economy. Stop Russian war criminals!" (https://t.co/c3ia46Ctjq)
The Ministry of Infrastructure
The enemy attempted to destroy the dam of the Kyiv reservoir. The Ukrainian air defense shot down a missile heading towards the dam at night.
As of February 26, 198 people died due to Russia's actions, including three children. Also, 1,115 people have been injured, including 33 children, according to Health Minister Viktor Lyashko.
Over the Chornobyl zone air combat is being simulated, according to the Coordination Headquarters of the Exclusion Zone. They noted that they have information about fake news being prepared for the world media stating that Ukraine is shelling the occupiers in Chernobyl over dangerous objects. The headquarters noted that there are no Ukrainian military present in Chernobyl, Ukraine is not fighting in Chernobyl.
"The radiation background has increased due to the movement of the invader's military hardware," the statement said. (https://bit.ly/3Hm9pKX)
Russian losses now, according to Ukraine’s military.
536 armored cars,
15 artillery pieces,
1 BUK-1 system,
3,500 killed, nearly 200 taken as prisoners
General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Operational information as of 11:00 on February 26 regarding the Russian invasion
The enemy continues its offensive in selected directions. The main efforts are concentrated in Polissya, Siversky, Slobozhansky and Tavriya operational districts. The main purpose of the occupiers' operation is to surround and block KYIV, to "demilitarize" and "denationalize" Ukraine, and to force the Ukrainian leadership to change its political course on Russian terms. Units of the Russian occupiers are losing their offensive pace, waiting for the introduction of additional units to battle and are forced to stop to replenish supplies.
Up to seven battalion tactical groups (BTGs) of the enemy were stopped in the Polissya direction in the areas of BORODYANKA, BUCHY, VYSHHOROD. The Russian invaders have partially lost their combat capability and are trying to regroup.
The Russian occupiers attempted to land airborne troops in the Tomylivka area and at Vasylkiv airbase (the landing party was destroyed).
In the Siverskyi region, the Russian occupiers with forces of up to 14 BTGs continue their offensive to block KYIV from the northeast, but were stopped by units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine near the cities of Nizhyn, the Highway, and Obychiv, also the occupiers' offensive was stopped in the SUMY, PRYLUKY and KYIV areas.
During this operation, 17 BTGs were introduced in this direction. The occupier had no reserves left.
In Slobozhanshchyna, up to 12 BTGs of occupiers from 1th Tank and 20th Combined Arms Army were stopped in front of Okhtyrka and in the districts of Bohodukhiv, Derhachiv, Pechenehy.
In the Tavriya direction, the enemy continues its offensive operations and is forced to introduce second echelons in the direction - up to 3 BTGs from the 58th Combined Arms Army of the Southern Military District.
In total, the invaders lose dozens of tanks, hundreds of armored vehicles and thousands of Russian soldiers every day.
The Slobozhansk group of the Armed Forces of Ukraine continues to conduct defensive operations. Stopped and held the predominant forces of the Russian occupiers.
The Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine repulses enemy air strikes. Continues to conduct systematic military actions. During the past 24hrs, the aircrafts of the Air Force performed 34 flights / departures in order to deal damage to clusters of manpower and equipment in the area of the HORODNYA railway station of the Chernihiv region and a road bridge in the area of the settlement of Kherson. BAYRACTAR - TB2 hit targets south of GOSTOMEL airbase.
The Joint Forces are conducting a defensive operation, holding positions along the line of demarcation. The opponent had no success in any of the areas.
Iryna Venediktova, Prosecutor General of Ukraine
Loss among prosecutors.
Chernihiv. Dmytro Rozenko, an employee of the regional prosecutor's office, was killed. A shrapnel wound. On February 24, Dmytro had joined the territorial defense. Yesterday evening contact with him was lost. Today this black news came.
We miss him. We feel sympathy. We will not forgive. We're going to punish the enemy according to the law.
Gas TSO of Ukraine
Gas TSO of Ukraine provides gas transmission services for Ukraine's needs.
On February 26 the Gas TSO of Ukraine performs its functions of natural gas transmission to consumers and system balancing.
The company's facilities in all regions of Ukraine, including the areas of military operations, continue to operate. Given the risks due to the hostilities, the staff has been switched to telework at some facilities. There are no injuries or casualties among the company's employees.
Stanytsia Luhanska (Luhansk region) was disconnected from the gas supply due to gas network damage.
Our employees are doing everything in their power to supply gas to Ukrainian consumers and secure the areas where the hostilities are taking place from the danger of emergency incidents.
The National Bureau of Investigation
Russia is actively conducting information and psychological special operations (IPSO) aimed at undermining the moral and psychological condition of personnel and misleading our soldiers.
Thus, on the eve of the start of the war, Ukrainian fighters in the Joint Forces Operation zone received an SMS saying that the officers had allegedly left the units and that there was no point in resisting.
After the Russian blitzkrieg in Ukraine failed, Russian special services changed tactics and moved to a new level of IPSO.
Now MPs, high-ranking officials, and law enforcement officials have started receiving calls and text messages with threats and proposals for cooperation.
The occupiers are trying to force Ukrainian officials to act in favor of Russia, threatening to kill family members and close relatives.
Vice Prime Minister – Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine
Mykhailo Fedorov: “I asked YouTube to block the Russian propaganda media, which call us Nazis and drug addicts, lie and promote war. Asked Meta to block Facebook and Instagram. I asked Netflix to block the service in Russia.
The goal is not to deprive Russians of access to information, but to reach young, proactive and thinking people - your "bloody king" is taking you into oblivion - change that now!”
Vice Prime Minister – Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine
I’ve contacted @tim_cook, Apple's CEO, to block the Apple Store for citizens of the Russian Federation, and to support the package of US government sanctions! If you agree to have the president-killer, then you will have to be satisfied with the only available site Russia 24.
Ukrainian Sea Ports Authority
According to the dispatch service of the State Enterprise USPA, as of 08:00 CET: entrance/exit to the ports of Skadovsk, Kherson, Mykolaiv, Olbia, Odessa, Black Sea, South, B-Dniester, Izmail, Reni, Ust-Dunaisk - closed, ports of Mariupol, Berdyansk - open. Cargo operations are suspended, with the exception of the ports of Chernomorsk, Pivdenny, Mykolayiv, and Reni, where cargo operations are partially performed. Channels: Bistre, KhMK, BDLK - open.
Situation at Chornobyl NPP
Since 24 February 2022, operating personnel of the Chornobyl NPP (in total 92 persons) have been held hostage by the Russian armed forces. They remain at the site for more than two days. ChNPP personnel are forced to maintain the operation of the facility and ensure security at gunpoint.
The soldiers of National Guard of Ukraine (in total around 130 persons) have also been taken hostage by the Russian armed forces.
The invasion of heavy military machinery of the Russian armed forces into the territory of Ukraine happened through the Natural Reserve established over the contaminated with radiation territories around Chernobyl NPP. The movement of heavy military machinery through the Exclusion zone led to raise of radioactive substances into the air. The increase in gamma irradiation levels has been exceeded by 5 to 15 times. Such levels were detected by the automated system of radiation monitoring of Ukraine and are observed by all safety concerned countries of the EU.
The New Safe Confinement, constructed at the cost of a significant number of countries, to protect the world from radiation consequences of the destroyed Unit 4, is now under the threat of random attack of unmanned aerial vehicles, explosive devices or other military equipment used by the Russian armed forces against Ukraine.
Nuclear facilities throughout the territory of Ukraine remain at the highest risk.
Under such circumstances, since seizure of the nuclear facilities by inadequate and unpredictable troops of the Russian Armed Forces, Ukraine cannot fulfill in the full scope its obligations under the Nuclear Safety Convention and the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management, as well as the Agreement between Ukraine and the International Atomic Energy Agency for the application of safeguards in connection with the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons.
As of 25 February 2022, air alert was declared at the site of Khmelnitsky NPP and Neteshin city.
Against this background, Ukraine requests the IAEA the following:
- To create a special task force to monitor actions of the Russian Federation, because its aggression against Ukraine and the actions on the Chornobyl site give grounds to doubt the effectiveness of existing safety regimes.
- To raise question of imposing sanctions on construction of a new NPPs designed by Russia.
- To carry out international audit of nuclear material in possession of the Russian Federation.
Ukraine considers the IAEA as unique and powerful international organization and that is why we hope that along with expression of deep concern, the Agency will create the conditions to pressure Russia before President Putin issues an order to use nuclear weapons as a last argument in his fight for personal ambitions.
Ukraine fully complies with all nuclear-related international obligations and truly hopes for effective and efficient support from all IAEA Member States.