Ukraine Daily Summary - Wednesday, March 22

ICC prosecutor says Russia treats children like spoils of war -- Russia strikes Odesa with missiles -- China shipping drones to Russia worth millions -- Evidence suggests Putin has not been able to secure no-limits bilateral partnership with China -- and more

Wednesday, March 22

Russia’s war against Ukraine

A chaplain walks along the Alley of Heroes at a cemetery in Kharkiv, on March 21, 2023, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Photo by SERGEY BOBOK / AFP) (Photo by SERGEY BOBOK/AFP via Getty Images)

CNN: ICC prosecutor says Russia treats children like ’spoils of war.’ International Criminal Court Prosecutor Karim Khan said he believes Russia is treating children like “spoils of war,“ according to CNN.

Japanese PM meets Zelensky in Kyiv, pledges more aid to Ukraine. At a joint news conference following the meeting, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said his country would allocate $30 million to purchase non-lethal weaponry for Ukraine through the NATO trust fund, Suspilne news outlet reported on March 21. Tokyo will also provide Ukraine with $470 million in grant aid for the country’s energy sector and other industries, according to Kishida.

CNN: Putin says China’s ‘peace plan’ could serve as basis for Ukraine war settlement. Russian dictator Vladimir Putin said on March 21, as cited by CNN, that China’s so-called peace plan “can be taken as the basis for a peaceful settlement” of Russia’s war against Ukraine “when the West and Kyiv are ready for it.”

President’s Office: Russia strikes Odesa with missiles, injuring 3. Russian troops fired four Kh-59 missiles at Ukraine’s southern city of Odesa late on March 21, according to Presidential Office head Andrii Yermak. Ukrainian air defense shot down two missiles, but the other two hit the city, damaging a three-story building and wounding three people, said Yermak.

Ombudsman: Ukraine returns 15 children. Ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets reported on March 21 that 15 children from formerly-occupied territories of Kharkiv and Kherson oblasts were returned to Ukraine. According to Lubinets, Ukraine has been able to bring back 308 children that Russia forcibly relocated.

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Parliament approves $14 billion increase in state budget expenditures for defense-related needs. Ukraine’s parliament increased defense expenditures by Hr 537.2 billion ($14.6 billion), Budget Committee Chairman Roksolana Pidlasa reported on March 21. The bill will enter into law once signed by President Volodymyr Zelensky. According to Pidlasa, 96.5% of the added expenditures will be directed to national security and defense sectors.

Ukraine coordinates with EU officials to establish tribunal for Russian war crimes. Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba spoke with EU Parliament President Roberta Metsola on March 21 about the need for a tribunal to punish Russian crimes of aggression in Ukraine. The minister wrote on Twitter that they had “coordinated steps” to achieve this.

NYT: China shipping drones to Russia worth millions. China has provided Russia with more than $12 million worth of drones since its full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the New York Times reported on March 21. According to the New York Times, around 70 Chinese exporters sold 26 brands of Chinese drones to Russia during the past year.

Ukrainian military downs 16 drones overnight on March 22. The Ukrainian military downed 16 out of 21 Shahed-type drones amid Russia’s attack against Ukraine overnight on March 22, the General Staff of Ukraine’s Armed Forces reported.

ISW: Evidence suggests Putin has not been able to secure no-limits bilateral partnership with China. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping signed a joint statement on deepening partnership and strategic cooperation on March 21, which stressed that Russian–Chinese relations are “at the highest level in history.” The Institute for the Study of War indicated in their latest report that the commitments made by Xi and Putin were “notably lopsided.”

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Ukraine war latest: Japanese PM visits Kyiv; US to speed up Patriot, Abrams delivery

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida vowed that his country would help Ukraine “with the greatest effort to regain peace” during a visit to Kyiv on March 21.Kishida’s visit to Kyiv occurred as Chinese leader Xi Jinping was visiting Moscow.

Photo: Sergei Chuzavkov/AFP via Getty Images

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International response

IMF reaches staff-level agreement with Ukraine for $15.6 billion program. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said on March 21 it had reached a staff-level agreement with Ukraine for a four-year financing package worth about $15.6 billion. The aid aims to anchor the country’s policies that sustain fiscal, external, price and financial stability in Ukraine.

Official: UK to send Ukraine ammunition with depleted uranium. The U.K. Minister of State for Defense Annabel Goldie said on March 20 that some of the ammunition her country would deliver to Ukraine alongside Challenger 2 tanks contains depleted uranium. “Such rounds are highly effective in defeating modern tanks and armored vehicles,” Goldie added.

Pentagon confirms it will send Ukraine older Abrams tanks to accelerate delivery. Pentagon spokesperson Patrick Ryder confirmed on March 21 that the U.S. would supply Ukraine with 31 M1-A1 Abrams tanks instead of the newer M1-A2 version it had pledged before, according to CNN. The U.S. official said this decision would allow his country to deliver the tanks to Ukraine by the fall of 2023.

US imposes new sanctions over involvement in Iranian drone production. The sanctions have been imposed against four companies and three individuals from Iran and Turkey over their involvement in purchasing equipment, including European-made engines, to support Iran’s drone and arms development programs.

In other news

The Kyiv Independent to launch ‘Ukraine’s True History’ project. The Kyiv Independent is gearing up to introduce a new project called “Ukraine’s True History” this April. This initiative will feature articles, videos, and a newsletter that delve into Ukraine’s past and present, providing you with a perspective free from distortions and myths.

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