- Ukrainian president tells country ‘Donbas will be Ukrainian’ as Russia pounds Severodonetsk
- US President Joe Biden says his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin is trying to “wipe out” Ukrainian culture and identity.
- Russia’s finance minister says he expects to receive $14.4bn in additional energy revenues this year, part of which will go to fund the country’s war in Ukraine.
- The ICC prosecutor urges Russia to cooperate with investigation into alleged war crimes.
Here are all the latest updates:
‘Donbas will be Ukrainian’: Zelenskyy
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has struck a determined tone in his regular nightly video address amid reports that Russia had captured Lyman and was pounding the city of Severodonetsk.
Ukraine was protecting its land “as much as our current defence resources allow,” he said.
“If the occupiers think that Lyman or Severodonetsk will be theirs, they are wrong,” Zelenskyy said. “Donbas will be Ukrainian.”
Lithuanians club together to buy drone for Ukraine
Lithuanians have raised some 3 million euros ($3.2 million) in just three days – out of the 5 million euros needed – to buy an advanced military drone for Ukraine.
Laisves TV, a Lithuanian internet broadcaster that launched the drive, says hundreds of people have donated small amounts.
Ukraine has bought more than 20 Bayraktar TB2 armed drones in recent years and ordered 16 more on January 27. That batch was delivered in early March.
“This is the first case in history when ordinary people raise money to buy something like a Bayraktar. It is unprecedented, it is unbelievable,” Beshta Petro, Ukraine’s ambassador to Lithuania, told Laisves TV, according to Reuters news agency.
Russian forces could struggle in Severodonetsk urban battle: ISW
The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) has released its latest assessment on the fighting in Ukraine.
It says Russia’s direct attacks on Severodonetsk began even before the city had been completely encircled, which could make it difficult for the military to advance quickly in the town.
“Russian forces have performed poorly in operations in built-up urban terrain throughout the war to date,” the think tank said.
It also observed an increase in the activity of Ukrainian partisan forces in the south that have been occupied by Russian troops.
— ISW (@TheStudyofWar) May 28, 2022
Satellite images show Russian manouevres, devastation
New satellite images have been released giving an insight into what’s happening in eastern Ukraine, and the scale of the devastation.
US Army confirms buying more Stingers to help replenish stocks
The United States Army has said it has awarded a contract worth $625m to Raytheon Technologies Corp for anti-aircraft Stinger missiles to replenish stocks sent to Ukraine.
The shoulder-fired, anti-aircraft Stinger missiles made by Raytheon were in hot demand in Ukraine, where they have successfully stopped Russian assaults from the air, and in neighbouring European countries that fear they may also need to beat back Russian forces.
US troops have limited use for the current supply of Stingers, but the US needs to maintain its supply on hand while it develops the next generation of a “man-portable air defense system”.
Since February, Washington has shipped about 1,400 Stingers to Kyiv.
Putin has achieved ‘exactly zero’ of his objectives: US official
Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby has said Putin has “achieved exactly zero” of his objectives in Ukraine, despite intensifying fighting in the east.
“Our assessment is that the Russians continue to make some incremental gains in the Donbas. Not great magnitude – not leaps and bounds. They are facing and continue to face a stiff Ukrainian resistance,” Kirby told reporters during a news conference.
“We are almost 100 days into this, and Mr Putin has achieved exactly zero of his strategic objectives,” he said.
NATO talks with Sweden, Finland ‘will continue’: Turkish official
A senior Turkish official has told the Reuters news agency that talks with Sweden and Finland over the two countries’ efforts to join NATO are “not an easy process” but will continue.
Ankara has raised concerns over their recent bids to join the US-led alliance, accusing Sweden and Finland of harbouring “terrorists” while also criticising Stockholm for suspending weapons sales to Ankara in 2019 over its involvement in the war in Syria.
Swedish and Finnish diplomats met in Turkey on Wednesday to try to bridge their differences.
The Turkish official told Reuters that Sweden and Finland must take “difficult” steps to win Ankara’s support. “Further negotiations will continue. But a date doesn’t seem very close,” the official said.
Biden says Putin trying to erase Ukrainian culture and identity
US President Joe Biden has accused his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin of seeking to “wipe out” Ukrainian culture and identity.
“Not only is he trying to take over Ukraine, he’s literally trying to wipe out the culture and identity of the Ukrainian people,” Biden said in a speech at a US Naval Academy graduation ceremony.
He said Russian forces are “attacking schools, nurseries, hospitals, museums with no other purpose than to eliminate a culture” and added that the war is “a direct assault on the fundamental tenets of rule-based international order”.
ICC prosecutor urges Russia to cooperate with war crimes probe
The International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor has urged Russia to cooperate with the court’s investigation into alleged war crimes in Ukraine.
Prosecutor Karim A A Khan said Russia, which is not a member of the Hague-based court, had declined to work with the ICC on Ukraine but added that his “door is open” if it wants to help.
“The invitation is there. My door is open, and I will also keep knocking on the door of the Russian Federation,” Khan said in an interview with the AFP news agency.
“If there are allegations that the Russian Federation have, if there’s information that they have, if they are conducting their own investigations or prosecutions or have information that’s relevant – share it with us.”
Russia expects $14.4bn in additional oil and gas revenue this year
Russia expects to receive $14.4bn (one trillion rubles) in additional oil and gas revenues this year, the country’s finance minister has said, adding that part of the windfall will be spent on the Russian offensive in Ukraine.
Anton Siluanov said in remarks broadcast on state television that Moscow planned to spend the additional revenue this year rather than put it aside.
He said the funds will be spent on “additional payments” to pensioners and families with children and conducting a “special operation” in Ukraine, the term Russia uses to refer to its ongoing invasion. “There are resources for this,” Siluanov added.
Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s continuing coverage of the war in Ukraine.
Read all the updates from Friday, May 27 here.