Day 33rd of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion (Live Updates)

Defense Express collects operative information on Russia's invasion of Ukraine – official sources and senior Ukrainian authorities' announcements
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Ukrainian artillery digests the enemy
Ukrainian artillery digests the enemy

Ukrainian army conducts successful defense and Ukrainian army manages to liberate recently occupied territories. New powerful British MANPADS "Starstreak" is already being shipped to Ukraine to kick the enemy out of Ukraine as fast as possible. Russia’s lack of success is the reason why the enemy produces and shares videos with the inhuman treatment to discredit Ukrainian Defense Forces.

Brief facts:

  • The next round of talks between Ukraine and the Russian Federation will take place in Turkey on March 28-30.
  • According to Ukraine’s Prosecutor General's Office, a total of 143 children have been killed and 216 have been injured during full-scale hostilities on the territory of Ukraine led by Russia.
  • A moment of reflection for the people of Ukraine has plunged the 94th Academy Awards in Hollywood into a 30-second silence.
  • The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy: Referendum on neutral status possible only when Russian troops withdraw.
  • the Wall Street Journal & Bellingcat reported three members of the peace talks Ukraine-Russia delegation had experienced symptoms of suspected poisoning with chemical weapons after a meeting in Kyiv on March 3–4

Sources:

Latest news:

23:56 Ukraine NOW: Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba on tomorrow's talks between the Ukrainian and Russian delegations in Istanbul:

Read more: Destroyed With No Mercy by Ukrainian Warriors: russia's Occupiers Suffer Hevy Losses in Armaments, Military Equipment
  • Ukraine does not trade people, lands and sovereignty, this is the position of President Zelenskyy in negotiations.
  • The minimum negotiating program in Turkey is a solution to the humanitarian crisis. The maximum program is a ceasefire, reaching stable agreements on this.
  • Currently, there are no agreements made as such for any key point of the negotiations. Instead, there is an exchange of thoughts, suggestions and ideas.
  • The issue of holding a referendum in Ukraine will not be discussed at the talks in Turkey, because it is Ukraine's internal matter
  • Over this month, the public position of the Russian Federation has gradually changed from plans to capture key cities of Ukraine "in a few days" to explanations that the "military operation" is limited to the capture of Donetsk and Luhansk regions.
  • If Russia speaks the language of ultimatums and propaganda clichés again, the talks will end up nowhere.

23:26 MIA of Ukraine: a policeman was awarded a sniper rifle

The Minister of the Internal Affairs of Ukraine Denys Monastyrskyi presented the weapon to the serviceman of the Rapid Operational Response Unit "for his bravery and courage during the performing of operational tasks.

"The awards now have a specific caliber. I'm proud of your bravery! I'm pleased to hand such this thing over to someone who knows how to use it right. May it serve and help you to destroy the enemy," said Minister Monastyrskyi.

Defense Express / The Minister of the Internal Affairs of Ukraine Denys Monastyrskyi presented awarded a policeman with a sniper rifle / Day 33rd of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion (Live Updates)
The Minister of the Internal Affairs of Ukraine Denys Monastyrskyi presented the weapon to the serviceman of the RORU of the National Police "for his bravery and courage during the performing of operational tasks"
22:59

Nolan Peterson, military journalist: Rudnytske town in the Kyiv region was liberated from the Russian occupiers

"Today Ukrainian forces, including the Georgian National Legion, liberated a town called Rudnyts’ke, about 60 km east of Kyiv, pushing the line about 15 km farther to the east," the journalist wrote on Twitter. The information was confirmed by Yurii Levchenko, the Head of the "Narodovladdya" party.

An American volunteer in Ukrainian Armed Forces told the journalist that the locals were crying happy tears when they finally could come outside after 3 weeks of occupation.

This is the footage of locals meeting the defenders, posted by the "Pryamyi" TV channel on Facebook:

21:04 Wall Street Journal: at least three members of the delegation attending the peace talks between Ukraine and Russia suffered symptoms of suspected poisoning after a meeting in Kyiv earlier this month.

The alleged poisoned negotiators are Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich and at least two members of the Ukrainian delegation, including lawmaker Rustem Umerov. Following the meeting in Kyiv, delegates developed symptoms that included red eyes, constant and painful tearing, and peeling skin on their faces and hands, the WSJ states referring to its sources. The lives of the delegates were not in danger, the experts said.

The investigative journalism group Bellingcat confirmed that three members of the peace talk delegations "experienced symptoms consistent with poisoning with chemical weapons" on the night of 3 to 4 March 2022.

Later, a source close to Roman Abramovich told the BBC he had suffered symptoms of suspected poisoning. They said he had now recovered and was continuing with negotiations between Russia and Ukraine.

More details in our story.

20:38 MIA of Ukraine: Ukraine has received 319 vehicles in the framework of humanitarian aid from international partners.

It was mentioned in the latest daily report from the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the information was provided by the State Customs Service of Ukraine.

"The total amount of humanitarian aid, imported and recorded by customs service workers on March 27, is 4,7 tons, including 319 vehicles (ambulances, automobiles, and trucks.) In addition, there were radio transmitters, thermal sights, medical tents, furniture, medicine, food etc. among the cargo," written in the report.

20:08 President Zelenskyy: the occupiers have killed some of the kidnapped mayors.

"They are kidnapping the mayors of our cities," the Ukrainian President told the Economist. "They killed some of them. Some of them we can’t find. Some of them we have found already, and they are dead. And some of them were replaced…The same people are carrying out these operations."

19:43 Center for Countering Disinformation: Russia is trying to convince its citizens in the success of the war in Ukraine.

Currently, Russia is spreading the narrative of holding a referendum in the territories of the so-called "Donetsk People's Republic" and "Luhansk People's Republic" on joining the Russian Federation. The Center noted a change in the rhetoric of the enemy's propaganda media:

  • February, 21: Putin said that there was no question of the so-called "DPR" & "LPR" joining Russia.
  • February, 24: the "special operation" in Ukraine continues to "denazificate" and "demilitarize" the state.
  • March, 23: the leadership of the general staff of the Russian armed forces "forgot" about "denazification" and "demilitarization" and declared the main goal of the "special operation" to liberate Donbas.
  • March, 26: they talked about the referendum in "DPR"

These facts may indicate that the referendum is an attempt to show the Russian population at least some result of the "special operation". The Kremlin is in a stalemate and it needs to record at least some "victory," the CCD concluded.

19:23 Emergency Service of Ukraine: Russian missile hit a fuel base in Lutsk city of Northeastern Ukraine.

On March 27, due to shelling, a fire broke up on a fuel base. The fire was localized, the firefighters keep on working.

19:00 The State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine: The Neutron Source nuclear facility based on a subcritical assembly controlled by a linear electron accelerator, located at the site of the National Scientific Center of Kharkiv Institute of Physics and Technology was subjected to another shelling on March 28, around 14.00.

National Scientific Center of Kharkiv Institute of Physics and Technology
National Scientific Center of Kharkiv Institute of Physics and Technology

"As a result of another act of nuclear terrorism by Russia, the buildings and infrastructure located on the territory of the Neutron Source nuclear facility based on a subcritical assembly controlled by a linear electron accelerator were seriously damaged. Now it is impossible to assess in detail the extent of damage and their impact on nuclear and radiation safety due to intense hostilities that do not stop in the area of the nuclear installation," the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine said.

The State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate once again draws attention to the fact that the Neutron Source nuclear facility, like any other nuclear installation, is not designed for operation in combat conditions.

"The continuation of its bombardment can lead to severe radiation consequences for contamination of nearby territories," the inspectorate said.

18:11 Vadym Boychenko Mariupol Mayor released information on consequences of Russian aggression: "Twenty-seven days into the start of the siege, as of March 27, almost 5,000 people were killed in Mariupol, including about 210 children," he said to media, Ukrinform report.

Throughout this period, enemy shelling and bombings damaged 2,340 apartment blocks, accounting for 90% of the total, of which 1,560 (60%) were hit directly and 1,040 (40%) destroyed. In the private sector 61,200 (90%) households were damaged, of which 40,800 (60%) were hit directly and 27,200 (40%) were destroyed.

The Russian troops wreaked destruction on three hospitals and damage – on seven others. In addition, 57 schools and 70 kindergartens were affected, of which 23 and 28 were destroyed, respectively.

Two factories, a port, and a military unit have also sustained damage.

Before the blockade, up to 140,000 people fled Mariupol and 150,000 people were evacuated from the city after it was besieged. As many as 170,000 people remain under siege and 30, 000 were deported by Russia, Boychenko informs.

The mayor of Mariupol noted that these figures are only approximate, for it is impossible to accurately assess the losses until active hostilities subside.

17:40 Air Force Command of Ukrainian Armed Forces: In the Kharkiv Oblast, the air defense forces of the Armed Forces of ukraine shot down an enemy plane and a drone.

17:06 Ukrainian Defense Ministry spokesperson Oleksandr Motuzianyk has said at a briefing at the Ukrainian media center in Kyiv on Monday:

Ukrainian Defense Ministry spokesperson Oleksandr Motuzianyk
Ukrainian Defense Ministry spokesperson Oleksandr Motuzianyk

A sufficiently large number of Russian units are forced to withdraw their troops outside Ukraine, to Russia or Belarus in order to restore their combat capability and replenish ammunition,

"A fairly large number of Russian units are forced to withdraw their troops outside Ukraine, to the territory of Russia or the territory of Belarus, in order to restore their combat effectiveness, replenish ammunition, since the Russian army can no longer conduct offensive operations with the available forces and means in certain areas, since it has not created an appropriate shock grouping," Motuzianyk said.

16:51 Mayor Oleksandr Markushyn: The city of Irpin in Kyiv Oblast was liberated from Russian troops.

15:55 Iryna Venediktova, the Prosecutor General of Ukraine on briefing on March 28: Among the Russian forces captured in Ukraine are those suspected of committing war crimes in its territory.

"We have such suspects, and in order for me to remain a successful prosecutor, I will remain silent on this,” she told journalists, answering a question of whether there are suspects in war crimes among the POWs and if the PGO will recommend that they not be swapped.

Iryna Venediktova, the Prosecutor General of Ukraine
Iryna Venediktova, the Prosecutor General of Ukraine

“This really is confidential information, and I hope that you will have work to do in Ukrainian courtrooms and see how we will work with this article on war crimes – it’s Art. 438. So we will move on and see what happens. We are working on this line, there are such suspects,” Venediktova said as Ukrinform report.

15:01 The Defense Intelligence of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine: Russia continues covert mobilization.

On April 1, mobilization under the BARS-2021 program (Russiaʼs Special Combat Army Receive) will begin throughout Russia. It will be held simultaneously with the planned conscription. This will be a cover for a large number of mobilized people who will arrive at military enlistment offices.

Units of the occupying forces will replenish these reservists in the areas of hostilities on the territory of Ukraine.

At the same time, the BARS program conceals Russian prisoners' involvement in hostilities. In particular, about 100 criminals detained in the Chernokozovo penal colony (Chechen Republic) are already being prepared for deportation to Ukraine. All of them have been convicted of serious criminal offenses (robbery, murder, drug distribution). Convicts who have received sentences under political articles (extremism, terrorism) are not offered such agreements.

Those who agreed were promised a full amnesty in the event of a return alive after participating in hostilities. It is noteworthy that such "mobilized" people are not allowed to see their relatives and even inform them about their participation in the war in Ukraine.

"BARS" is a program of urgent formation of army reserves of the Russian army. Those who have signed contracts under this program will receive permanent cash security (even while in reserve) while maintaining a job and average earnings. During the year, reservists can be called to a meeting (up to 1 month), where they can be involved in training and other tasks. The monthly salary under the contract reaches 12% of the salary of servicemen (depending on the rank and position). The total number of people who signed contracts for BARS is almost 100,000.

14:20 The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine posted on Facebook operational update information regarding the russian invasion on 12.00 on March 28, 2022.

Key points of the report:

  • The russian enemy is focusing on maintaining the occupied frontiers and preparing for the resumption of offensive operations.
  • There is noted a regrouping of russian troops in order to increase offensive capabilities to meet their objectives of reaching the administrative borders of Donetsk and Luhansk regions. At the same time, the russian enemy continues to launch missile and bomb strikes on military and civilian infrastructure of Ukraine.
  • It is planned to send military equipment and 150 servicemen from the 155th Separate Brigade of the Pacific Fleet (permanent base of Vladivostok). A unit of the 14th special brigade of the Eastern Military District (Khabarovsk, permanent deployment point) has been formed.
  • In the Volyn direction, there are up to four BTGs from the Armed Forces of the republic of belarus, involved in strengthening and protecting the Belarusian-Ukrainian border. It is impossible to completely rule out the involvement of the armed forces of the republic of belarus in hostilities on the territory of Ukraine.
  • In the Polissya direction, the russians did not carry out active offensive actions. It continues to inflict fire damage on units of Ukrainian troops in the areas of the settlements of Lychanka, Petrushka, Shpytka and Moshchun.
  • The russians are regrouping troops and withdrawing some of the units to the territory of the republic of belarus to restore combat capability.
  • In the Gomel region of the republic of belarus, the transporting of Iskander-M mobile short range ballistic missile system in the direction of the State Border with Ukraine has been recorded.
  • In the Siversky direction, the enemy, with the help of certain units of the Central Military District, did not conduct offensive operations. It focused its efforts on consolidating and maintaining the previously occupied borders. Carries out regrouping, concentrates equipment in settlements and forests in order to prevent its fire damage.
  • The russian enemy continues to blockade the city of Chernihiv, inflicting fire damage on civilian infrastructure. It defends previously captured frontiers and conducts engineering equipment positions. According to available data, the russian enemy withdrew from the village of Snovsk, destroying the bridge over the river Snov.
  • In the direction of Brovary, the occupiers tried to act with the help of separate units of the 90th Tank Division and the 2nd All-Military Army of the Central Military District. The occupiers were stopped by active defensive actions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, but it continued to shell the positions of our troops near the village of Lukyanivka.
  • In the Slobozhansky direction, the enemy is acting with the help of separate units from the Western Military District.
  • In the area of the city of Sumy, russian enemy did not conduct active hostilities, continued to regroup troops and withdraw them to the territory of the russian federation to restore combat capability after the losses. According to available information, the morale and psychological condition of the personnel is extremely low. Thus, servicemen of the 15th Motorized Rifle Regiment refuse to take part in the war.
  • In the direction of Kharkiv city, the russian enemy did not conduct offensive operations, continues to block the city and fire on civilian infrastructure and carries out measures of logistical support of troops.
  • In the area of the city of Izyum, the russian enemy is operating with the help of separate units of the 20th All-Military and 1st Tank Armies and the Baltic Fleet. Carries out regrouping, it replenishment of ammunition in order to further resume the offensive on Slovyansk.
  • In the Donetsk direction, the russian occupiers are concentrating their main efforts on taking control of the settlements of Popasna and Rubizhne, exits to the districts of Vuhledar and Solodke, as well as capturing the city of Mariupol.
  • The russian enemy carried out artillery and mortar shelling of the settlements of Toretske, Svitlodarsk, Troitske, and Pisky.
  • In the direction of Terny, as a result of a combat clash with units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the russian enemy suffered losses and retreated to the area of the settlement of Makiyivka.
  • In Rubizhne, with the support of artillery, russian enemy is trying to gain a foothold in the north-western part of the city, but it suffered losses with no success.
  • In the area of the settlement of New York, Donetsk oblast, the russian enemy attempted assault twice . It was unsuccessful, was retreated, and continued artillery shelling of the positions of Ukrainian defenders.
  • The russian enemy carried out assaults in the area of Marinka. It was unsuccessful and suffered losses. In Mariupol - russian enemy continued to advance to the city centre and fire on the positions of Ukrainian troops.
  • In the areas of Stepnohirsk and Huliaipole, the russian occupiers carried out artillery shelling of the positions of units of the Ukrainian Defence Forces.
  • In the Tavriya direction, rosguard units in the temporarily occupied territories of the Kherson region continue to carry out filtering measures to identify Ukrainian servicemen, participants in the anti-terrorist operation, civic activists, as well as the seizure of weapons and ammunition.
  • In the South Buh direction, the enemy is taking measures to restore combat capability and replenish ammunition, continues engineering work. It carried out assault operations in the direction of the settlement of Blahodatne, but with no success.
  • The naval staff of the Black Sea Fleet of the russian federation performs tasks in certain areas of the Black Sea and Azov operational zones. Some ships went to a closed area, probably to launch missile strikes on targets in Ukraine.

13:45 Defense Ministry Ukraine said on Telegram on Monday: Russian multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS) with cluster bombs were used to attack the 128th Separate Mountain Assault Brigade, but most of the shells hit the area where peaceful settlements are located far beyond the line of fire, the Armed Forces of Ukraine have said.

"Cluster munitions (air bombs, rockets, artillery or rockets) are special means of destruction containing the same type of combat elements inside, including delayed-action mines scattered in the air over a large territory," Ukraine's Defense Ministry.

The ministry explained that one of the features of cluster munitions is that they can be in the ground for a long time and pose a danger long after the cessation of hostilities. It is from cluster munitions that a significant number of civilians, especially children, die after the end of wars.

"Fighters of the engineer-sapper battalion of the brigade have already begun to clear the area hit by Russian artillery cluster munitions," the Defense Ministry said.

13:10 Kherson City Council statement: Six people have been wounded and 20 houses have been damaged in shelling of Stepanivka near the city of Kherson by Russian invaders.

“On March 28, 2022, the village of Stepanivka came under fire. Six people were wounded. One person was taken to hospital; five people suffered shrapnel wounds,” the report states.

Kherson City Council, Photo: Vladimir Sagaidak
Kherson City Council, Photo: Vladimir Sagaidak

About 20 houses in the village were damaged and left with broken windows, destroyed walls and fences. Now the relevant commission is working to assess the compensation for the losses suffered according to the program endorsed by the city council.

In addition, a gas pipeline on Selianska Street was hit. The relevant information was submitted to Khersongaz JSC, and the emergency crew will start repair works as soon as possible.

12:30 The Armed Forces of Ukraine unveiled photo of enemy’s cruise missile shot down in Mykolayiv region.

"The air defense unit of the 80th separate airborne assault brigade of the DShV of the Armed Forces of Ukraine shot down another russian cruise missile in Mykolayiv region," - said in post on oficial page of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on Facebook.

12:10 The Head of Kharkiv Regional Military Administration Oleh Synehubov: In Kharkiv region, Armed Forces launch counteroffensive in some areas.

The Armed Forces of Ukraine have launched a counteroffensive in some areas of Kharkiv region, Head of Kharkiv Regional Military Administration Oleh Synehubov has said.

n Kharkiv region, Armed Forces launch counteroffensive in some areas, Defense Express
The Head of Kharkiv Regional Military Administration Oleh Synehubov

"To date, we can confidently say that Mala Rohan is completely under the control of our troops and 'cleansed' from the invaders. The liquidation of the remnants of Russian troops in Vilkhivka continues. We are pushing the invaders to the borders with the Russian Federation," - Synehubov wrote on his Telegram channel.

He also said that on March 27, the Armed Forces of Ukraine liberated the settlement in the direction of Izium.

At the same time, Synehubov noted that the enemy continues to commit war crimes. In particular, in the village of Oskil, a Russian missile hit a residential building, which killed a family of four people, and a four-year-old child was seriously injured.

"We will not forgive a single destroyed family, we will not forget a single murdered Ukrainian. What the Russians are doing in Kharkiv region and Ukraine is nothing but terrorism. And they will be responsible for everything like terrorists!" Synehubov stressed.

11:30 An adviser to the Ukrainian interior minister Vadym Denysenko: Fighting continues on outskirts of Kyiv

Battles are ongoing on the outskirts of Kyiv; the Ukrainian forces continue to defend the capital. An adviser to the Ukrainian interior minister, Vadym Denysenko, said this on Ukrainian TV channels, Ukrinform reports.

Fighting continues on outskirts of Kyiv, Defense Express
Ukrainian servicemen stand in the village of Lukyanivka outside Kyiv / Photo credit: Marko Đurica/Reuters

"Currently, fighting continues on the outskirts of Kyiv, we hear how the artillery works in the west of Kyiv. The General Staff said in its report that the Russians were trying to attack in the northwest of Kyiv and in the east of Kyiv. We are resisting, we are fighting, we continue to defend the city of Kyiv," Denysenko said.

11:00 The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine: russia has lost 17 000 Personnel, 586 Tanks and 123 Aircraft etc.

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has posted the new summary of total combat losses of the enemy from 24.02 to 28.03. Find them in an infographic by Defense Express:

So far, the list of enemy's combat losses is the following:

Personnel - more 17 000,

Tanks ‒ 586 units,

APV ‒ 1694 units,

Artillery systems – 302 units,

MLRS – 95 units,

Anti-aircraft warfare systems – 54 units,

Aircraft – 123 units,

Helicopters – 127 units,

Vehicles – 1150 units,

Boats / cutters - 7 units,

Fuel tanks - 73,

UAV operational-tactical level - 66 units,

Special equipment – 21,

Mobile SRBM system - 4.

Data are being updated. The calculation is complicated by the high intensity of hostilities.

10:45 The head of the parliamentary faction Servant of the People David Arakhamia: Next round of Russia-Ukraine negotiations to take place in Istanbul today.

The next round of talks between Ukraine and the Russian Federation will take place in Turkey on March 28-30.

David Arakhamia, the head of the parliamentary faction Servant of the People, a member of the Ukrainian delegation, wrote this on Facebook, Ukrinform reports.

It is noted that yesterday “a decision was made to hold the next live round by two delegations in Turkey on March 28-30."

Next round of Russia-Ukraine negotiations to take place in Istanbul today, Defense Express
The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy on talks between Ukraine and the Russian Federation will take place in Turkey: "Our priorities in the negotiations are known. Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity are beyond doubt"

Following the talks between Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian President Putin, the Directorate for Communications of Turkey’s Presidential Administration confirmed that the next round of Russia-Ukraine negotiations would take place in Istanbul.

Earlier the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy had described a fresh round of face-to-face talks between Russian and Ukrainian negotiators to be held in Istanbul, Turkiye as "not bad."

"A new round of negotiations is ahead because we are looking for peace, really, without delay. As I was informed, there is an opportunity and a need for a face-to-face meeting in Turkiye. This is not bad. Let's look at the result," he said in a video address published early Monday, March 28, by the presidential office.

"Our priorities in the negotiations are known. Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity are beyond doubt," he said.

10:30 The mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko: Schools in Ukraine’s capital of Kyiv will reopen today via remote learning online.

Kyiv’s mayor Vitali Klitschko made the announcement in a Telegram update.

“On March 28, the educational process will resume in the capital – online. It will be more adapted to current conditions. And using different educational platforms for students,” he said.

“An important task today is for the city to live and work even in such difficult conditions of martial law. They are trying to intimidate us. That will not work! We will not give up!”.

The mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko, Schools in Ukraine’s capital of Kyiv will reopen today via remote learning online, Defense Express
The mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko Schools in Ukraine’s capital of Kyiv will reopen today via remote learning online

10:10 The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky: Ukrainian military refuses to leave Mariupol, they cannot leave wounded and dead.

Ukrainian servicemen refused to leave Mariupol because they cannot leave the wounded and killed people, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky spoke about his proposed right to choose to leave the city and save a life.

The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukrainian military refuses to leave Mariupol, they cannot leave wounded and dead, Defense Express
The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky: Ukrainian military refuses to leave Mariupol, they cannot leave wounded and dead

"There are our troops inside Mariupol. Russian troops entered where they could enter. They did not enter some part of the city, because there are our guys who refused to go out, including to the calls of the Russians. Moreover, their families [of Ukrainian servicemen] contacted me. I talked to these guys. Once every two days I get in touch with them. I also told them – I understand everything – but if you feel that you need to go out, if you feel that it is right and you can survive – do it," Zelensky said in an interview with Russian journalists published on the website of the President's Office.

"I gave them the right to choose. They said: we can't, there are wounded people, we will not leave the wounded. Moreover, they said: we will not leave the dead," he added.

The head of state, explaining the situation in Mariupol to Russian journalists, said that the entrances to and exits from the city were blocked by the Russian military, the port was mined, the Russian troops were shelling humanitarian cargo, killing drivers, and a humanitarian catastrophe was obvious.

The streets of Mariupol is just one giant cemetery among ruins now, Defense Express
The streets of Mariupol is just one giant cemetery among ruins now, Defense Express
The streets of Mariupol is just one giant cemetery among ruins now

"For you to understand, there are corpses on the roads and sidewalks in the city. Nobody removes them. Russian soldiers and citizens of Ukraine. It looks scary, and our military is not even ready to leave the dead ... And this applies not to officers, but to everyone. So they protect the city and protect the wounded, protect the dead they want to bury. We wanted to take out the corpses, we asked the Russian Federation about it. We were not allowed to take out either the corpses or the wounded, no one," the president said.

09:50 Ukraine’s Prosecutor General's Office: Some 143 children killed due armed aggression of Russia, another 216 injured.

A total of 143 children have been killed and 216 have been injured during full-scale hostilities on the territory of Ukraine led by Russia.

"Children suffered the most in Kyiv - 67, Kharkiv - 49, Donetsk - 53, Chernihiv - 38, Mykolaiv - 30, Luhansk - 27, Zaporizhia - 21, Kherson region - 24, Kyiv city - 16, Zhytomyr - 15 and Sumy - 14 regions," the Prosecutor General's Office said.

Due to bombing and shelling, 733 educational institutions have been damaged. 74 of them are completely destroyed. The worst situation is in Donetsk, Kharkiv, Mykolaiv, Sumy, Kyiv, Kherson, Chernihiv regions and the city of Kyiv.

"These data are not final, since there is no opportunity to inspect the places of shelling in the areas of active hostilities and in the temporarily occupied territories," the PGO said.

09:30 Ukraine’s Prosecutor General's Office already registered 3,085 criminal cases over Russian aggression.

Ukrainian law enforcement bodies have already registered 3,085 crimes of aggression and war crimes committed by the Russian Federation against Ukraine.

The press service of the Prosecutor General’s Office (PGO) wrote this on Telegram, Ukrinform reports.

“Crimes of aggression and war crimes: 3,085 crimes have been registered: 2,991 violations of the laws and customs of war, 40 crimes related to planning, preparing or waging an aggressive war, 6 crimes related to the propaganda of war, 48 other crimes," the report says.

The PGO also reminded that there are already 205 suspects in the main case of Russian aggression, representatives of the Russian military and political leadership at various levels: ministers, deputies, military command, officials, law enforcement officials, instigators of war and Kremlin propagandists.

In addition, 1,795 crimes against the national security of Ukraine have already been registered, including 1,235 crimes related to the encroachment on the territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine, 341 crimes related to treason, 54 crimes related to sabotage, and 165 other crimes.

09:00 Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny denies fake news of invaders about allegedly inhumane attitude of Ukrainian military to Russian prisoners of war.

Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny has denied the information disseminated by the occupiers about the allegedly inhumane attitude of the Ukrainian military towards Russian prisoners.

Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny, Defense Express
Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny

"To discredit the defense forces of Ukraine, the enemy is filming and distributing staged videos with the inhumane attitude of the supposedly "Ukrainian military" towards "Russian captives." I note that the servicemen of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other lawful military formations strictly observe the norms of international humanitarian law," - Valeriy Zaluzhny wrote on his Facebook page.

He urged citizens to take into account the realities of the information-psychological war and trust only official sources.

08:40 The UK Ministry of Defense: There has been no significant change to Russian Forces dispositions in occupied Ukraine In the last 24 hours

The UK’s ministry of defense has released its latest intelligence report, claiming there has been “no significant change” to Russian forces dispositions in Ukraine over the past 24 hours.

The report, released at 6am GMT, reads:

In the last 24 hours there has been no significant change to Russian Forces dispositions in occupied Ukraine.

Ongoing logistical shortages have been compounded by a continued lack of momentum and morale amongst the Russian military, and aggressive fighting by the Ukrainians.

Russia has gained most ground in the south in the vicinity of Mariupol where heavy fighting continues as Russia attempts to capture the port.”

The UK Ministry of Defense, There has been no significant change to Russian Forces dispositions in occupied Ukraine In the last 24 hours, Defense Express

07:35 General Staff: operational information as of 06:00, 28.03.2022 regarding the Russian invasion. Key points:

  • The Defens Forces of Ukraine continue to conduct a defence operation in the Eastern, Southeastern and Northeastern directions.
  • The situation In the Volyn and Siversky directions is under control and has not changed significantly.
  • The Armed Forces of Ukraine continue to restrain Russian troops from taking control of key highways and settlements in the city of Kyiv.
  • In the South of Ukraine Defense Forces are focused on defense of cities of Kryvyi Rih, Zaporizhia and Mykolayiv. Ukraine’s military also are aimed to maintaine the certain areas of the sea coast, to protection and to defense critical infrastructure. Stabilization operations and territorial defence tasks are underway in certain areas.
  • Grouping of Ukrainian troops effectively restrain the advance of the russian enemy in the directions of the settlements of Huliaipole and Zaporizhia.
  • A total of 5 enemy attacks were repelled from Donetsk and Luhansk with Ukrainian soldiers destroying 2 tanks, an infantry fighting vehicle and one track.
  • The Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine destroyed 4 planes, 1 helicopter, 2 UAVs of various types and 2 cruise missiles in the previous day. The Air Force was also involved in striking certain ground targets and occupiers.

07:10 French FM on Russia's actions in Mariupol: This is a 'second Aleppo'.

French foreign minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has called for immediate action in Ukraine’s south-eastern city Mariupol, drawing comparisons to the destruction of Aleppo, Syria.

A local resident in tears next to the building where her destroyed apartment is located in the besieged city of Mariupol, Defense Express
A local resident in tears next to the building where her destroyed apartment is located in the besieged city of Mariupol / Photo credit: Alexander Ermochenko/Reuters

“You can very well see that Mariupol is a second Aleppo with, I hope, a collective guilt if we don’t do anything,” he said at the Doha Forum, a meeting of policy makers, referring to a Syrian city that saw some of the worst fighting of the country’s brutal civil war.

“Mariupol is a siege war that Russia’s been in for a month now. Maybe it wasn’t envisaged as a siege war but today we’re in siege warfare, and Mariupol is one of the most striking examples.

“Military sieges are horrible wars because civil populations are massacred, annihilated. The suffering is terrible.”

Charred cars in front of a heavily damaged apartment building in the besieged city of Mariupol, Defense Express
Charred cars in front of a heavily damaged apartment building in the besieged city of Mariupol / Photo credit: Alexander Ermochenko/Reuters

06:30 A moment of reflection for the people of Ukraine has plunged the 94th Academy Awards currently under way in Hollywood into a 30-second silence.

A tribute that started with words from the Ukrainian-born actress Mila Kunis ended with the Academy Awards fading to black about midway through Sunday’s show from Los Angeles, with a plea for anyone watching to do whatever possible to send help to those in the war-torn nation, - The Guardian reports citing Associated Press:

“Recent global events have left many of us feeling gutted,” Kunis said as she took the stage, part of her remarks to introduce Reba McIntyre’s performance of the Oscar-nominated song “Somehow You Do” from “Four Good Days.”

“Yet when you witness the strength and dignity of those facing such devastation, it’s impossible to not be moved by their resilience,” Kunis continued. “One cannot help but be in awe of those who find strength to keep fighting through unimaginable darkness.”

Gregg Donovan holds up an Oscar statue with a sign reading ‘Glory To Ukraine’ ahead of the Oscars Award show at the Dolby Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles, California, Defense Express
Gregg Donovan holds up an Oscar statue with a sign reading ‘Glory To Ukraine’ ahead of the Oscars Award show at the Dolby Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard in Los Angeles, California / Photo credit: Angela Weiss/AFP/Getty Images

That’s when McIntyre took the stage, dressed in a black gown, for her performance.

The balance between celebrating art while Russia’s invasion of Ukraine rages on has been a delicate one for the Oscars. Sean Penn has openly campaigned for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy - a former actor - to speak at the ceremony. Some arrived for the Oscars wearing blue-and-gold ribbons, an obvious show of support since those are the colours of the Ukrainian flag.

When McIntyre’s song ended, a large video screen hovering over the stage displayed a tribute and a plea as the 30-second moment of silence began.

“We’d like to have a moment of silence to show our support for the people of Ukraine currently facing invasion, conflict and prejudice within their own borders,” read the screen.

“While film is an important avenue for us to express our humanity in times of conflict, the reality is millions of families in Ukraine need food, medical care, clean water and emergency services. Resources are scarce and we — collectively as a global community - can do more.”

It then ended with a display of the following: “We ask you to support Ukraine in any way you are able. #StandWithUkraine.”

A moment of reflection for the people of Ukraine has plunged the 94th Academy Awards currently under way in Hollywood into a 30-second silence, Defense Express
A message is projected to show support for Ukraine at the 94th Academy Awards in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California / Photo credit: Brian Snyder/Reuters

06:00 The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine: Russian forces have turned the besieged city of Mariupol “into dust”.

Ukraine’s ministry of foreign affairs says Russian forces have turned the besieged city of Mariupol “into dust” while describing the current humanitarian situation in the city as “catastrophic”.

“While Mariupol besieged and bombed, people fight to survive. The humanitarian situation in the city is catastrophic. Russian Armed Forces is turning the city into dust,” the ministry said on Monday.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine: Russian forces have turned the besieged city of Mariupol into dust, Defense Express
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine: Russian forces have turned the besieged city of Mariupol “into dust”

02:50 The Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine eliminated 4 enemy planes, 1 helicopter, 2 UAVs, 2 cruise missiles

Over the past 24 hours, the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine shot down four Russian planes, one helicopter, two drones, and two cruise missiles.

Air Force destroys 4 enemy planes, 1 helicopter, 2 cruise missiles on Sunday, March 27, Defense Express
Ukraine's Air Force shot down 4 enemy planes, 1 helicopter, 2 cruise missiles on Sunday, March 27

“March 27 at first seemed relatively calm in the air. However, one plane, probably a Su-34 fighter-bomber, was shot down in Kharkiv region in the morning, and a helicopter and UAVs of Russian invaders were shot down in Kyiv region,” - Ukrinform reports, citing the Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

"The situation escalated closer to 22:00 as air alerts roared across the country! The Russian occupiers carried out a massive air raid from the north of Kyiv region, where they lost three planes at once. The occupiers fired cruise missiles on several Ukrainian infrastructure facilities. Two missiles were shot down by air defense units," the Air Force Command added.

Air Force aircraft continue to hit ground targets, carrying out several air raids on enemy troops under the cover of fighters.

02:00 The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky: Our goal is peace and restoration of normal life as soon as possible.

The goal of the Ukrainian authorities is peace and the restoration of normal life in the country as soon as possible, President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his address.

The Head of State noted that a new round of talks with Russia would take place soon.

he President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, Our goal is peace and restoration of normal life as soon as possible, Defense Express
he President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky: Our goal is peace and restoration of normal life as soon as possible

“As I was informed, there is an opportunity and a need for a face-to-face meeting already in Turkey. This is not bad. Let's look at the result,” - he said.

According to Zelensky, our priorities in the negotiations are known. “Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity are beyond doubt. Effective security guarantees for our state are mandatory. Our goal is obvious – peace and the restoration of normal life in our native state as soon as possible,” - the President said.

01:00 Deputy Prime Minister – Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories of Ukraine Iryna Vereshchuk demands that UN Security Council take immediate measures to demilitarize Chornobyl NPP.

Deputy Prime Minister – Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories of Ukraine Iryna Vereshchuk demands that UN Security Council take immediate measures to demilitarize Chornobyl NPP, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, Ukraine-Russia war
Deputy Prime Minister – Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories of Ukraine Iryna Vereshchuk

Iryna Vereshchuk, Deputy Prime Minister – Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories of Ukraine, demands that the UN Security Council take immediate measures to demilitarize the exclusion zone of the Chornobyl NPP and establish a special UN mission to eliminate the risk of a nuclear disaster.

Vereshchuk made a corresponding request at a briefing on March 27, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

"In the context of nuclear security: the irresponsible and unprofessional actions of the Russian military pose a very serious threat not only to Ukraine but also to hundreds of millions of Europeans," the official stressed.

In particular, Vereshchuk said that the occupiers continued to militarize the exclusion zone. She stressed that there was a great risk of damaging the confinement structures built over the NPP’s power unit No. 4 after its explosion in 1986. Vereshchuk stressed that such damage would inevitably lead to a significant amount of radioactive dust discharged into the atmosphere, resulting in the contamination of Ukraine and other European countries.

00:50 General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine posts brief fact about military operation on Donetsk and Luhansk directions.

  • 5 russian enemy attacks have been successfully repulsed during the current day.
  • Ukrainian soldiers inflicted losses on the russian occupiers.
  • Ukrainian defenders destroyed 2 tanks, an infantry armoured personnel vehicles and an enemy car.
  • In total, units of the Joint Forces repulsed 63 russian enemy attacks this week.
  • Ukrainian troops destroyed russian's enemy: 80 tanks, 72 armoured personnel vehicles, 48 vehicles, 19 artillery systems, 7 unmanned aerial vehicles, 14 aircraft, a helicopter and an enemy patrol boat.
  • Also, the Joint Forces eliminated the modern russian electronic warfare system "Leer-3" and captured five BMP-3 of russian occupiers.

00:25 Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny: Invaders share staged videos with inhumane treatment of Russian prisoners.

The enemy produces and shares staged videos with the inhumane treatment of Russian prisoners of war by alleged Ukrainian soldiers.

Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny: Invaders share staged videos with inhumane treatment of Russian prisoners, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, Russia-Ukraine war
Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny

“The enemy produces and shares videos with the inhuman treatment of alleged ‘Russian prisoners’ by ‘Ukrainian soldiers’ in order to discredit Ukrainian Defence Forces. I emphasize that service members of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other legitimate military formations strictly adhere to the norms of International Humanitarian law,” Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhny posted on Facebook.

00:10 Volyn Regional Military Administration Head Yurii Pohuliaiko: Russian military launch missile strikes on oil depot in Lutsk.

Russian invaders have launched missile strikes on an oil depot in the city of Lutsk.

Volyn Regional Military Administration Head Yurii Pohuliaiko: Russian military launch missile strikes on oil depot in Lutsk, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, Russian-Ukrainian war
Illustrative photo

The relevant statement was made by Volyn Regional Military Administration Head Yurii Pohuliaiko on Telegram, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

“As for explosions, which could have been heard. These were missile strikes on an oil depot,” Pohuliaiko wrote.

He also called on local residents to stay in bomb shelters, as long as air raid alerts are ringing.

Background:

February, 24: Russian President Vladimir Putin authorized a "special military operation" against Ukraine. A number of cities of Ukraine suffered a missile attack. Missiles hit several military facilities in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Dniprocities. In a few hours, martial law was imposed in Ukraine.

The war lasts for a month now. An impressive rundown of the first days of the war was provided by the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy in his address to the Parliament of the United Kingdom.

Key points regarding the current state of warfare:

- Ukrainian defenders continue to defend our land on Donetsk and Luhansk directions successfully repulsing 5 attacks and inflicting losses on the russian occupiers.

- Ukraine managed to establish the defense, Russian offense has stalled, in some directions Ukrainian military push back the invaders.

- Belarus provides its lands to Russian troops and equipment; still hasn't joined the war directly.

- Russia uses terroristic methods of war, shelling civilian facilities where there are no military facilities nearby, keeping cities in a full blockade, and sabotaging humanitarian corridors for evacuation and convoys with humanitarian aid.

- Russian army targets nuclear power plants; Chernobyl NPP and Zaporizhzhia NPP are seized by occupiers; military activities by Russian forces near the power plants were described by Ukraine as nuclear terrorism

- Ukraine urges NATO to close the sky over Ukraine or at least provide air defense equipment: fighter jets or ground-based missile systems; some countries have expressed willingness to give their weapons if NATO provides corresponding defensive equipment in exchange (Poland, Slovakia)

- Ukraine appealed for EU membership via an accelerated procedure. The EU Council summit concluded that such a fast-track application process is impossible, yet they stated that "Ukraine belongs to the European Union"

- Ukrainian citizens in the occupied cities rally against Russians; thousands of civilian volunteers join the Territorial Defense of the Armed Forces of Ukraine; the fighting has become a national struggle for survival

- Ukraine has had several rounds of negotiations with Russia; still, no significant progress towards ceasefire and peace, the main question, for now, is establishing humanitarian corridors for the supply of aid and evacuation of civilians; the negotiations continue "non-stop" in an online format; President Zelenskyy expressed readiness to directly talk with Putin.

Read more: Day 32nd of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion (Live Updates)
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