​Day 36th 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
1020
Occupiers can only seize the stones - but not Mariupol / Photo credit: General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine
Occupiers can only seize the stones - but not Mariupol / Photo credit: General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

After 35 days of unsuccessful military operation in Ukraine, russia was forced to have talks, but it always was bad idea to hope for some agreement on the talks with russia. While Ukraine-russia talks took place in Istanbul, russia has been accused of intensifying its bombardment of the besieged Ukrainian city of Chernihiv despite claims the Kremlin would drawback out of respect for ongoing peace talks. There was also continued barraging of Kyiv’s suburbs. The Ukrainian military said Russian troops were also intensifying their attacks around the eastern city of Izyum and the eastern Donetsk region, after redeploying some units from other areas. As a “prize” for Wednesday, March 30, Russian forces struck a Red Cross facility in the besieged southern Ukraine port city of Mariupol. What the Day 36th bring us - watch with Defense Express, please

Brief facts:

  • UK defense minister Ben Wallace: Britain, allies to send more lethal aid to Ukraine.
  • The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky said russia was accumulating troops for new strikes in Donbas.
  • Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby stated that over the last 24 hours, the first six of “around 30” shipments of US security assistance had arrived in Ukraine.
  • The International Committee of the Red Cross confirmed that the warehouse, that was damaged in Mariupol, was a location for distribution of medical supplies to hospitals
  • Russians withdraw from small villages and cities in some directions: 2 villages near Chernihiv, 5 villages near Zaporizhzhia and town Slavutych in Kyiv Oblast.

Sources

Latest news:

00:20 New feed on Day 37th of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion Day 37th of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion has started.

00:00 First Deputy Minister of Economy Denys Kudin reveals industries most affected by Russian invasion.

Read more: We Have Sources in the Kremlin, but We Need Jets – Chief of the Defense Intelligence of Ukraine's MoD

The sectors of the economy where it is impossible to set up work from home for the employees have been affected the most by the war in Ukraine.

That's according to First Deputy Minister of Economy Denys Kudin, Ukrinform reports.

"The most affected areas are those where telework is impossible. In particular, today we have no air transport sector at all, as well as maritime transport and port infrastructure," the official told a national telethon.

Kudin added that businesses that work directly with people have also been hurt.

23:15 Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine Anna Maliar: Belarus territory actively used by Russia to attack Ukraine.

Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine Anna Maliar: Belarus territory actively used by Russia to attack Ukraine
Belarus military field / Photo credit: Maxar Tech

The territory of Belarus continues to be actively used by Russia to carry out acts of aggression against Ukraine.

This was stated by Deputy Minister of Defense of Ukraine Anna Maliar, who spoke with the Ukrainian TV channels, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

"The enemy hasn’t abandoned its plans to capture Donetsk and Luhansk regions completely, along their geographical borders. They are also encroaching on Kharkiv region and trying to toughen their stance there, regroup troops, and fixate their positions. And now we see missile systems in the Gomel area as the enemy is trying to amass them there, and this is obviously due to plans to launch missile strikes or use them there as a tool of blackmail and intimidation. Therefore, the territory of Belarus continues to be actively used by Russia to carry out aggression," Maliar said.

22:45 Melitopol Mayor Ivan Fedorov: In show of defiance, all Melitopol school principals resign, unwilling to cooperate with invaders.

Melitopol Mayor Ivan Fedorov: In show of defiance, all Melitopol school principals resign, unwilling to cooperate with invaders, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, russia-Ukraine war
Melitopol city

In Melitopol, the town in southern Ukraine that is temporarily occupied by Russian forces, all school principals wrote resignation letters.

This was announced by Melitopol Mayor Ivan Fedorov during a live broadcast on Facebook, Ukrinform reports.

"Today, a difficult but absolutely correct decision was made: all school principals, without exception, wrote resignation letters in a show of protest, unwilling to cooperate with the occupiers," Fedorov said.

22:00 The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy and the President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan agree on next steps toward Ukraine-Russia peace.

The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy and the President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan agree on next steps toward Ukraine-Russia peace, Defence Express, war in Ukraine, russia-Ukraine war
The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy

The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy agreed with his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on further joint steps towards peace amid the ongoing Russian invasion.

The head of the Ukrainian state announced this on Twitter, Ukrinform reports.

"Had another conversation with a real friend of Ukraine, President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Noted the high level of organization of negotiations of delegations in Istanbul. Agreed on further steps towards peace. Thanked for the readiness of Turkey to become the guarantor of security of our state!" Zelensky tweeted on March 31.

21:30 The Minister of Energy of Ukraine Herman Halushchenko: Energy ministry has no confirmation of Russian troops’ withdrawal from Chornobyl.

The Minister of Energy of Ukraine Herman Halushchenko: Energy ministry has no confirmation of Russian troops’ withdrawal from Chornobyl, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, russia-Ukraine war
The Chornobyl NPP, illustrative photo

The Ministry of Energy does not yet have fully confirmed information that Russian troops have pulled out of the territory of the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant.

This was stated by the Minister of Energy of Ukraine Herman Halushchenko, who spoke on the air of a national telethon on March 31, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

"We are watching what’s happening there now. So far, we do not have such 100% information that they (Russian troops - ed.) have left the NPP," Halushchenko said.

21:00 General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine posts footage of destroyed enemy column in Chernihiv Oblast.

20:40 UK defense minister Ben Wallace: Britain, allies to send more lethal aid to Ukraine.

Britain and its allies have agreed to send more lethal weapons to Ukraine to help defend it against Russia’s invasion, British defense minister Ben Wallace said on Thursday.

UK defense minister Ben Wallace: Britain, allies to send more lethal aid to Ukraine, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, rissia-Ukraine war
UK defense minister Ben Wallace

“There’ll be more lethal aid going into Ukraine as a result of today. A number of countries have come forward either with new ideas or indeed more pledges of money,” Wallace told reporters after hosting over 30 international partners at a conference.

He said the lethal aid included longer range artillery, ammunition, and more anti-aircraft weapons.

20:20 General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine: The operational update regarding the Russian invasion on 18.00 on March 31, 2022.

Key facts:

  • russian occupying forces are trying to create a new group of troops in order to establish control over parts of the Kharkiv, Luhansk and Donetsk regions, including the blockade of the cities of Slovyansk and Kramatorsk.
  • The enemy continues to attack the city of Popasna, presumably in order to divert the attention of Ukraine's military leadership from attempts to establish control over Izyum and Mariupol.
  • Mercenaries from the Middle East have been transferred to the Belarusian city of Gomel.
  • russia continues to transfer missile units to the republic of belarus in order to increase the intensity of ballistic missile attacks on settlements and infrastructure in Ukraine. Thus, in the Gomel region, three Iskander missile systems and two S-300 air defense systems were detected to cover them.
  • In the territories temporarily occupied by the enemy, it continues to restrict the movement of the local population, russian invaders take Ukrainian citizens hostage and export goods looted from civilians.
  • Ukraine's Defense Forces continue to successfully carry out their tasks, pursue the retreating enemy, break through the occupiers' defensive positions and gradually liberate Ukrainian lands.

20:10 An advisor to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Vadym Denysenko: Russian troops withdraw from Kyiv Region but likely to regroup in Chernihiv Region.

An advisor to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Vadym Denysenko: Russian troops withdraw from Kyiv Region but likely to regroup in Chernihiv Region, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, russia-Ukraine war
A buch of russians moving away

Russian troops are indeed withdrawing from Kyiv Region, but at the moment it is difficult to say if they are withdrawing from Chernihiv Region too.

The relevant statement was made by Advisor to Ukrainian Internal Affairs Minister Vadym Denysenko during a telethon, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

“They are indeed withdrawing from Kyiv Region, but at the moment it is difficult to say if they are seriously withdrawing from Chernihiv Region. Now it looks more like rotation or regrouping. Thus, we are now monitoring Chernihiv Region,” Denysenko told.

In his words, earlier, Russians gathered the representatives of Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant (NPP), those who were working at the plant, and informed them they are withdrawing.

19:15 The Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine - Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories Iryna Vereshchuk: About 75,000 people evacuated from Mariupol.

The Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine - Minister for Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories Iryna Vereshchuk: About 75,000 people evacuated from Mariupol, Defense Express, war in Ukraine, Russia-Ukraine war
Illustrative photo

About 75,000 people have been evacuated from Mariupol via humanitarian corridors, but 100,000 people more need to be taken to safety.

The relevant statement was made by Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister, Temporary Occupied Territories Reintegration Minister Iryna Vereshchuk at a briefing, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

“As for Mariupol, we have managed to evacuate about 75,000 people. Those who are staying there and need urgent evacuation – it is about 100,000 women, children, elderly people, persons with disabilities. They need help from us and the world very much,” Vereshchuk told.

In her words, about 45,000 people were forcibly deported by russian invaders to the so-called ‘DPR’ and Russia.

18:35 General Staff: a Russian tank was lifted from the bottom of a river

The rescuers of the State Emergency Service together with the Territorial Defense have lifted a Russian tank that had sunk in a river somewhere in the Sumy region. The exact location is not specified. The crew sank with the vehicle, their bodies will undergo the necessary procedures, prescribed by law. An expert group will deal with the tank.

Defense Express / A Russian tank was lifted from the bottom of a river, it had sunk with the crew inside / Day 36th of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion (Live Updates)
A Russian tank was lifted from the bottom of a river, it had sunk with the crew inside / Photo credit: the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine
18:17

Operational Command "North": two more settlements were liberated from the Russian occupation

Russian troops were pushed away from Sloboda and Lukashivka villages in the Chernihiv region. Fleeing, the occupiers have left a lot of explosive "presents". Currently, ordnance disposal works are being carried out. The locals are receiving help.

"The local residents are exhausted, but it didn't undermine the faith in Ukraine," said Viacheslav Chaus, the Head of the Chernihiv region military administration.

17:33 Special Communications Service: the occupiers are about to leave the Chernobyl NPP and its satellite city Slavutych

SSSCIP of Ukraine has confirmed the information that two columns of Russian occupiers have left the Chernobyl nuclear power plant territory towards Belarus. It was initially reported by the state enterprise "Energoatom".

The plans on leaving the NPP were voiced to the personnel of the plant today morning, March 31. There are still some Russians staying there. Ukrainian communication service has confirmed the information regarding the fortifications and entrenchment that Russians have made up in the Red Forest, one of the most polluted places in the Exclusion zone. Therefore, the occupiers have already suffered the first symptoms of the radiation poisoning and almost started a mutiny.

The Russian forces in Slavutych also started leaving for Belarus.

17:21 State Emergency Service: Ukrainian rescuers have received 18 vehicles from their British colleagues.

These include 17 firefighting and rescue vehicles and an articulated lift. The machinery already has all the necessary special equipment and is ready for operation.

Defense Express / Ukrainian rescuers have received 18 fully equipped vehicles from their British colleagues / Day 36th of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion (Live Updates)
Ukrainian rescuers have received 18 fully equipped vehicles from their British colleagues / Photo credit: State Emergency Service of Ukraine.

16:37 National Guard of Ukraine: during the liberation of Mala Rohan' city, Russian occupiers fired phosphorous munitions

How it was, a guardsman with a call sign "Grom" ("Thunder") shared his story via Facebook. He was a commander of the group of servicemen from the National Guard who participated in the military operation.

"Initially, the occupiers launched an air strike on our forces. And then was the shelling with phosphorous munitions. We evacuated the wounded of various severity, including burns from phosphorous munitions. The ones with such injuries were taken out in the first place, and on our way, we got under phosphorus shelling twice more," Grom said.

But, as he mentioned, Russian artillery and aviation could do nothing with the offensive as Ukrainian troops effectively used the element of surprise and approached the enemy with the following attack in close proximity.

16:14 Ukraine NOW has published the imagery of the "Saratov" landing ship, destroyed by the Ukrainian military. The satellite image shows that almost the entire deck of the ship is under water.

Defense Express / Satellite imagery of the
This is what the Russian warship "Saratov" looks like in Berdyansk a week after the Ukrainian missile strike / Image credit: Planet Labs Inc., Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

15:29 Defense intelligence of Ukraine: Ukraine wasn't and will not be an enemy to the Belarussian people

The Main Directorate of Ukrainian intelligence has called out to the servicemen of the Armed Forces of Belarus. The intelligence reassured them that Ukraine has not planned any aggressive actions against Belarus and urged the soldiers not to participate in the war against Ukraine.

"The crimes committed every day by the invaders against the civilian population, including innocent children and women, have nothing to do with military prowess, officer honor and duty before your homeland, Belarus," the Defense Intelligence wrote in a statement.

Ukrainian intelligence also warned that it possesses comprehensive information about all the servicemen, and their relatives, of the Armed Forces of Belarus, "who are tried to be involved in a war – disgraceful, foreign to them and without prospects of winning."

The Defence intelligence published the personal data of some servicemen of the 38th Airborne Assualt Brigade of the Armed Forces of Belarus as proof of the seriousness of the statement.

15:07 Verkhovna Rada: the Kremlin attempts to conceal the truth about war and the real losses of the Russian troops in Ukraine.

According to the Ukrainian parliament, Russian authorities are afraid of mass anti-war protests, so they take measures to hide the truth: block social networks, intimidate media, introduce censorship, high fines and imprisonment up to 15 years for delivering true information about the war started against Ukraine.

Defense Express memo: the accountability for the spread of "fakes" about the Russian Armed Forces was adopted on March 4. The bill introduced amendments to The Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. It implies imposing an enormous fine or imprisonment for up to 15 years on those who share, in fact, any information that differs from the reports from Russian authorities.

Also, as Verkhovna Rada informs, Russian authorities do not inform soldiers’ families of their fate. Instead, their families are already receiving reports of their deaths or disappearances, although they are still alive and in captivity.

"Still, the truth cannot be hidden," the Parliament said.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called on the mothers of Russian soldiers to turn to Ukraine to learn about the fate of their children.

14:59 Ukraine Media Center: 300,000 people of Ukraine's "IT Army" are attacking Russian digital infrastructure.

The "digital warfare frontline" state was reported to the Ukraine Media Center by Oleksandr Bornyakov, Deputy Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine.

"After the war started, Russians have kept trying to attack Ukraine, but they only managed to break several non-key websites. Thus, the high effectiveness of the Russian Cyber Force is just a myth," the media center cited Bornyakov.

As for Ukraine, it has been counteracting the Russian threat in the digital sphere effectively. Ukraine’s 300,000 IT specialists are doing their best to attack their infrastructure. Ukraine’s IT Army includes Ukrainians and citizens of other countries who joined the Ministry’s dedicated Telegram channel.

14:45 Stratcom Centre has published footage of Mariupol, depicting the scale of destruction of the besieged city.

Update: according to the Centre, Russia has almost completely destroyed the civilian infrastructure of Mariupol: 90% of residential buildings are damaged by shelling. 40% of them are completely destroyed. 90% of hospitals are also damaged.

Defense Express memo: Mariupol has been in a full blockade for 30 days already with intense shelling and air bombing taking place every day.

14:10 Airborne Assault Troops Command: five villages were liberated from Russian occupiers

Airborne forces, with the assistance of the other formations of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, have pushed the occupiers out of the villages of Zatyshshia, Malynivka, Vesele, Zelenyi Hai and Chervone.

"The main quality of every airborne soldier is the ability to perform the most difficult tasks in extreme conditions. The Ukrainian paratrooper is a synonym for such concepts as honor, dignity, loyalty to duty, and victory."

Defense Express / A Russian tank destroyed during the military operation / Day 36th of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion (Live Updates)
A Russian tank destroyed during the military operation / Photo credit: Airborne Assault Troops Command

13:50 Stratcom Centre: Russians have bombed a military base in Dnipro city, two people killed

The attack took place on March 31, said Valentyn Reznichenko, the Head of the Dnipropetrovsk region military administration. Two people were killed due to the missile strike, five got injured. An administrative building and a fuel depot.

13:34 Prosecutor General's Office: 148 children were killed, 232 injured because of Russia's invasion of Ukraine

"And these numbers aren't final yet, because its isn't possible to perform primary investigatigative measures and overview of the territories due to hostilities and ruination in the areas of military activities and in the temporarily occupied territories. In particular, in Mariupol, in some territories of Kyiv, Chernihiv and Luhansk regions"

12:55 The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights reported on Wednesday: From February 24, 2022, when Russia started the war against Ukraine, to 24:00 on March 29, 2022, civilian casualties amounted to 3,090 civilians (3,039 in the report a day earlier), including 1,189 dead (1,179),

"OHCHR believes that the actual figures are considerably higher, as the receipt of information from some locations where intense hostilities have been going on has been delayed and many reports are still pending corroboration," the document says.

This concerns, for example, Mariupol and Volnovakha (Donetsk region), Izium (Kharkiv region), Popasna (Luhansk region), and Trostianets (Sumy region), where there are allegations of numerous civilian casualties. These figures are being further corroborated and are not included in the above statistics.

"Most of the civilian casualties recorded were caused by the use of explosive weapons with a wide impact area, including shelling from heavy artillery and multiple launch rocket systems, and missile and air strikes," the report says.

Mariupol, Ukraine, photo BBC
Mariupol, Ukraine, photo BBC

According to confirmed UN data, 239 men, 172 women, 34 boys and 17 girls died, while the sex of 57 children and 670 adults has not yet been determined.

Among the 1,901 wounded, there are 36 girls and 30 boys, as well as 76 children, the sex of which has not yet been determined.

OHCHR indicates that in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, as of midnight March 30, there were 328 (326) dead and 727 (716) injured in government-controlled territory, and 65 (62) dead and 243 (233) injured in territory controlled by self-proclaimed "republics."

In other regions of Ukraine (the city of Kyiv, and Cherkasy, Chernihiv, Kharkiv, Kherson, Kyiv, Mykolaiv, Odesa, Sumy, Zaporizhia, Dnipropetrovsk and Zhytomyr regions), which were under Government control when casualties occurred: 1,702 casualties (791 killed and 911 injured).

OHCHR notes the report of the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine, according to which as of 8 a.m. 29 March (local time), 144 children had been killed and at least 220 injured.

12:10 Donetsk Regional Military Administration head Pavlo Kyrylenko has said:Russian troops have again used phosphorus shells in Maryinka, Krasnohorivka and Novomykhailivka, this time injuring 11 residents from the Maryinka community, including four children.

"Some 11 wounded civilians from the Maryinka community, including our children, were delivered to the Kurakhiv city hospital," he wrote on his Telegram channel on Thursday morning.

Also in the morning, two people were wounded in the Ocheretyne community under fire from Russian troops.

"We continue to deliver drinking water and food to the front-line settlements. We will evacuate everyone who wants to. Once again I call on everyone who is on the front line, who is dependent on the availability of specific medicines and medical care, to take the opportunity and leave. Evacuation is temporary. The most important thing now is saving lives!" Kyrylenko said.

12:01 Volodymyr Zelensky addressed the people and politicians of Australia. "The distance between our states is thousands of kilometers. We are divided by the seas and oceans, the territories of dozens of other countries, time zones. But this distance simply does not exist for the cruelty and chaos that Russia has brought to Eastern Europe, to the region of our Black and Azov Seas, to Ukrainian soil. Everything that is happening in our region due to Russian aggression and that is destroying the lives of our people has already become a real threat to your state, to your people. Because this is the nature of evil - it can instantly overcome any distance and any barriers. And ruin lives."

11:20 The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, Ukrinform reports: Credible reports indicate that Russian armed forces have used cluster munitions in populated areas of Ukraine, at least two dozen times since they invaded on February 24.

According to Bachelet, for more than one month now, the entire population of Ukraine has been enduring a living nightmare,” she said. “The lives of millions of people are in upheaval as they are forced to flee their homes or hide in basements and bomb shelters as their cities are pummelled and destroyed.”

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet,
The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet,

At the Geneva Forum, the High Commissioner of the UN for Human Rights also reported that Russian shelling has damaged medical facilities, including 50 hospitals.

Reiterating the UN Secretary General's calls for a cessation of hostilities, Bachelet insisted that the Russian leadership “heed the clear and strong calls of the General Assembly and of this Council, and immediately act to withdraw its troops from Ukrainian territory.”

Russian armed forces use cluster munitions in populated areas of Ukraine
Russian armed forces use cluster munitions in populated areas of Ukraine
As Ukrinform reported, the president of the UN Human Rights Council, Federico Villegas, announced the creation of a commission to investigate war crimes and other abuses committed during Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

The commission consists of three members: Eric Messe of Norway (chair), Jasminka Dzumhur of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Pablo de Greiff of Colombia.

10:15 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 31.03. Find them in an infographic by Defense Express:

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

Personnel - more 17 500,

Tanks ‒ 614 units,

APV ‒ 1735 units,

Artillery systems – 311 units,

MLRS – 96 units,

Anti-aircraft warfare systems – 54 units,

Aircraft – 135 units,

Helicopters – 131 units,

Vehicles – 1201 units,

Boats / cutters - 7 units,

Fuel tanks - 75,

UAV operational-tactical level - 83 units,

Special equipment – 22,

Mobile SRBM system - 4.

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

09:30 The UK Defence Intelligence predicts fierce fighting on the outskirts of Kyiv in the coming days.

  • Russian forces continue to hold positions to the east and west of Kyiv, despite the withdrawal of the limited number of units. Heavy fighting will likely take place in the suburbs of the city in the coming days.
  • Despite Russian statements about its intention to reduce military activity around Chernihiv, Russian artillery shelling and missile attacks continue.
  • Heavy fighting continues in Mariupol, a key objective for Russian troops, but Ukrainian forces still control the city center.

09:10 Kate Bedingfield, the White House Director of Communications: The US presidential administration is not yet ready to talk about the specific decisions on security guarantees that Ukraine is asking for. "We are in constant discussion with Ukrainians about ways that we can help ensure that they are sovereign and secure. But there’s nothing specific about a security guarantee that I can speak to at this time" – she said .

Kate Bedingfield, the White House Director of Communications
Kate Bedingfield, the White House Director of Communications, photo UPI.com

09:00 Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov during a telethon: Russian troops have destroyed 15% of residential houses in the city of Kharkiv.

“Over the past 35 days, a total of 1,531 objects have been destroyed in the city of Kharkiv, including 1,292 residential houses. The Russian army destroyed 76 secondary schools, 54 nursery schools, 16 hospitals. A total of 239 administrative buildings are lying in ruins,” Terekhov told.

SBU's building was damaged in Kharkiv, photo - open sources
SBU's building was damaged in Kharkiv, photo - open sources

Kharkiv has been under continuous daily shelling since the Russian invasion started. About one-third of local residents left the city.

08:30 The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine released updated information regarding the Russian invasion on 06.00 on March 31, 2022.

Key points:

    • The leadership of the russian federation is considering the formation of occupation authorities in the temporarily occupied territories. According to the available information, employees of law enforcement agencies, prosecutor's offices and courts are being selected on the territory of the russian federation, which will be sent to the territory of Ukraine in the future.
    • To implement the scenario of creating another pseudo-republic in the Kherson region, the work of the Federal Security Service of the russian federation, the 652nd Group of Information and Psychological Operations and officers of the 12th Main Directorate of the General Staff of the russian federation is noted.
    • The morale and psychological condition of the russian enemy troops and the level of motivation of the personnel of the occupying forces to take part in hostilities remains low and tends to deteriorate.
    • Numerous cases of refusal to continue service and reluctance to sign contracts with conscripts have been reported in units of the Baltic Fleet, in particular the 79th Detached Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 11th Army Corps.
    • On the territory of the republic of belarus, the movement of military equipment of the armed forces of the russian federation was recorded, probably for the purpose of regrouping units, as well as creating a reserve to replenish losses in manpower, weapons and equipment of groups operating in Ukraine.
    • In the territories of the Kyiv region left by the enemy, there are frequent cases of mining of the territory and buildings of local residents.
    • The Joint Forces in the Donetsk and Luhansk areas repulsed 5 enemy attacks in a day. Our soldiers destroyed 10 tanks, 18 armoured and 13 units of vehicles, 15 artillery systems. The enemy suffered casualties.
    • The Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has hit 7 air targets in the previous day - 4 planes, UAVs and 2 cruise missiles. Air Force aircraft continue to launch missile and bomb strikes on places of accumulation of equipment and enemy manpower.

08:06 The Air Force Command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on Facebook: Over the past day (March 30), the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine have destroyed seven enemy air targets.

In particular, Ukrainian defenders destroyed four Russian planes, one unmanned aerial vehicle and two cruise missiles.

06:30 The head of the regional military administration Vitaliy Kim on March 30 during a press conference for domestic and foreign media said: “Since the beginning of large-scale Russian invasion 134 civilians were killed in Mykolayiv oblast, six of them are children. 415 more civilians were wounded”.

05:15 The spokesman of the Air Force Command Yuriy Ignat: Russia attacks Ukraine from the air mainly with Caliber and X-55 cruise missiles. A few days ago the flights from the airfield in Brest, Belarus, where there has been no activity so far, became often. This was told by reported.

Russians also attack with Iskander missiles: they launch a missile very high, it makes an arc and flies at breakneck speed to a given target. The Air Forces of the Ukrainian Army have already learned to shoot them down as well.

Most of the missiles are visible to Air Force personnel. However, these are a high-precision weapon that flies with a speed of 800 kilometers per hour. If the rocket flies from the Black Sea, the location programmed for it is unclear, so the air sirens are activated from the Kherson oblast to the West.

According to Ignat, there have been many cases when Russian missiles fell on their way due to malfunctions or hit the wrong target.

The air force shoots down targets mainly with anti-aircraft missile systems. Stingers, Iglas, British and American anti-aircraft missile systems are all in service.

"We are already shooting them down with fighter jets, which shows the high skills of our pilots," said Ignat.

04:30 The UN Office of Human Rights has received "credible allegations" that Russian forces have used cluster munitions in human settlements at least 24 times. The UN also states that it is investigating the possibility of using such weapons by the Ukrainian Armed Forces.

01: 55 Russia and Ukraine will resume peace talks on Thursday

Zelenskiy on Wednesday said peace talks have been ongoing but nothing “concrete” has come out of it. A senior Ukrainian official said Russia and Ukraine will resume those talks online on Thursday, April 1, - The Guardian reports citing Reuters.

The negotiator David Arakhamia said in an online post that Ukraine suggested the two countries should meet but that Russia said more work needed to be done on a draft treaty first.

01:45 The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky expects more results from work of diplomats and military attaches.

President Volodymyr Zelensky has called for diplomats and military attaches to increase their efforts so that Ukraine could receive more weapons and sanctions against Russia be further strengthened.

The president said this in his video address, Ukrinform reports.

“There are those who work together with everyone to defend the state. So that Ukraine can gain its future. We appreciate the work of each such person. And there are those who waste time and work only to stay in office. Today I signed the first decree to recall such a person. Such an Ambassador of Ukraine. From Morocco. The Ambassador from Georgia was also recalled,” he said.

The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky expects more results from work of diplomats and military attaches, Defense Express
The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky expects more results from work of diplomats and military attaches

The president also addressed the diplomats and stressed that if there are no weapons, no sanctions, no restrictions for Russian business, they could start looking for another job.

“I look forward to concrete results in the coming days from our representatives in Latin America, the Middle East, Southeast Asia and Africa,” Zelensky said.

The president said he expects the same results from military attaches.

“I expect the same results from military attaches in the coming days. The diplomatic frontline is one of the key frontlines. And everyone there must work as efficiently as possible to win and help the army. Each on the diplomatic frontline must work just as each of our defenders on the battlefield,” Zelensky said.

01:30 General Staff: operational information as of 24.00 on March 30, 2022 regarding the Russian invasion. Key points:

  • The occupiers continue to conduct full-scale armed aggression against Ukraine.
  • The threat of using missile weapons on the objects of the defense-industrial complex and logistics infrastructure of Ukraine remains. In the Black Sea are ships equipped with cruise missiles naval base "Caliber". The replenishment of the Caliber anti-aircraft missile system on the Admiral Makarov frigate has been completed at the Sevastopol naval base.
  • Additional units of the armed forces of the russian federation are being relocated to Ukraine to take part in the war.
  • The enemy is trying to create military-civilian administrations trying to control the temporarily occupied territories of Southern Ukraine. Occupants also started preparations for a referendum on a quasi-state entity in the Kherson region (the so-called "Kherson People's Republic").
  • There were ho active action of the enemy in the northern direction. It is expected that the enemy would intensify fire on Ukrainian units in the area to ensure the movement of troops, with the further task of blocking the city of Chernihiv.
  • In the Slobozhansky direction, the enemy continues to block Kharkiv, conducting artillery shelling of the city.
  • In the Donetsk direction, the main efforts of the occupiers continued to focus on taking control of the settlements of Popasna, Rubizhne, as well as the capture of the city of Mariupol.
  • In the South Bug area, the enemy is taking measures to restore combat capability and replenish supplies.

00:45 The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky: russia accumulating troops for new strikes in Donbas.

The decrease in the activities of russian troops in Kyiv and Chernihiv regions does not mean their withdrawal; it is the result of the work of Ukrainian soldiers.

President Volodymyr Zelensky said this in his video address, Ukrinform reports.

"There is an ongoing negotiation process. But these are still words. So far no specifics. There are also other words about the alleged withdrawal of russian troops from Kyiv and Chernihiv, about the alleged reduction of the occupiers' activity in these areas. We know that this is not a withdrawal, but the result of expulsion, the result of the work of our defenders. However, we also see that there is an accumulation of russian troops for new strikes in Donbas, and we are getting ready for this," - Volodymyr Zelensky said.

The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky, Russia accumulating troops for new strikes in Donbas, Defense Express
The President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky: Russia accumulating troops for new strikes in Donbas

He assured that Ukraine does not believe in any "beautiful verbal constructions". There is a real situation on the battlefield, and now it is the most important thing.

00:30 Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby: Over the last 24 hours, the first six of “around 30” shipments of US security assistance arrived in Ukraine.

“Material is getting into the region every single day, including over the last 24 hours,” Kirby stated.

Kirby said the US is prioritizing “the kinds of material that we know the Ukrainians need the most”, including anti-armor and anti-air systems, The Guardian reports citing CNN.

Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby: Over the last 24 hours, the first six of around 30 shipments of US security assistance arrived in Ukraine, Defense Express
Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby

He also said the Switchblade drones promised to Ukraine will begin shipping in “relatively soon,” John Kirby stated.

00:15 Azov Regiment destroys three enemy tanks, over 60 infantry soldiers in Mariupol.

Fighters of the Azov Regiment on Wednesday destroyed three enemy tanks and 64 Russian infantry soldiers in Mariupol.

The Azov Regiment reported this on Telegram, Ukrinform reports.

Azov Regiment destroys three enemy tanks, over 60 infantry soldiers in Mariupol, Defense Express

"The battle for Ukrainian Mariupol continues. Fighters of the Azov Regiment today destroyed three tanks and more than 64 soldiers of enemy infantry, including the special forces of the GRU [Main Intelligence Directorate] of the Russian Federation," the statement said.

00:05 The International Committee of the Red Cross confirmed that the warehouse that was damaged in Mariupol was a location they were distributing medical supplies to hospital from. However, the ICRC had not distributed supplies from that warehouse since 15 March because of the “intensity of the fighting and the absence of a functional agreement between the parties to allow for the safe passage of humanitarian assistance.”

Mariupol Red Cross warehouse hit by military strikes, satellite imagery confirms, Defense Express
Mariupol Red Cross warehouse hit by military strikes, satellite imagery confirms / Photo: Maxar Technologies

The ICRC said they are concerned that objects used for humanitarian relief are being targeted and called on the parties to “do everything in their power to avoid locating military objectives within or near densely populated areas and protect civilians against the effects of attacks.”

“But what we are most outraged by is the overall humanitarian situation in Mariupol and the relentless suffering inflicted on civilians living there,” the ICRC said in a statement. “People are trapped with no safe way out of the city, and they are running out of the very basics needed for their survival. This must change.”

On Wednesday, March 30, the Ukrainian Armed Forces’ Azov Regiment claimed on its Telegram channel that the warehouse had been hit by Russian military strikes, posting an image of the larger complex as evidence.

Red Cross warehouse hit by russia's military strikes, Azov Regiment, Defense Express
Image of Red Cross warehouse hit by russia's military strikes published by Azov Regiment

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 more than a month. 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, though the enemy increased its firepower and intensified assault operations, the main efforts are on taking control of Popasna and Mariupol. No success achieved.

- 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 35th of Ukraine's Defense Against Russian Invasion (Live Updates)