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Arrest warrants for Shoigu and Gerasimov, three new security agreements, and Russian missile attack on Vilniansk: Ukraine’s weekly news digest

While Russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine is entering its 40th month, the situation is still intense, with regular updates on attacks on civilians, offensive and defensive operations, and responses from the international community.

Here is what you may have missed on the news from Ukraine from June 25 to July 1.

Photo of the week

A football stadium in Kharkiv was destroyed by a Russian artillery shelling.
This stadium was built for the EURO 2012, co-hosted by Ukraine and Poland, particularly for the players’ training sessions.
June 26, 2024.
Photo: Konstantyn & Vlada Liberov

International Criminal Court (ICC) has issued arrest warrants for Russians Sergei Shoigu and Valery Gerasimov

On June 24, the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued arrest warrants for former Russian Minister of Defence Sergei Shoigu and First Deputy Minister of Defence of Russia Valery Gerasimov. The warrants relate to international crimes committed by Russian representatives in Ukraine between October 10, 2022, and March 9, 2023.

These include directing attacks on Ukrainian civilian objects and causing harm to Ukrainian citizens. Shoigu and Gerasimov are also allegedly responsible for the crime against humanity of inhumane acts “under article 7(1)(k) of the Rome Statute”.

Photo: Official website of the International Criminal Court (ICC)

In particular, Russian representatives are considered to be in charge of missile strikes carried out by the Russian armed forces against the Ukrainian electric infrastructure from at least October 10, 2022, until at least March 9, 2023.

“There are reasonable grounds to believe they bear individual criminal responsibility for the aforementioned crimes for having committed the acts jointly and/or through others, ordering the commission of the crimes, and/or for their failure to exercise proper control over the forces under their command (article 28 of the Rome Statute),” stated the ICC in its press release from June 25, 2024.

40 types of armored vehicles approved to be used in the Armed Forces of Ukraine

Since the beginning of Russia’s full-scale invasion, the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine has codified and approved to be used in the Ukrainian Army almost 40 types of foreign and domestically produced armored vehicles.

The Ukrainian forces’ fleet of military equipment has been bolstered by models from different countries worldwide, including the USA, Germany, Sweden, the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Norway, and others.

Since February 2022, Ukraine has received Abrams, Leopard, and Challenger tanks, AMX-10 RC light tanks, M2 Bradley and CV90 infantry fighting vehicles, M113 armored personnel carriers in various modifications, wheeled armored personnel carriers such as the M1126 Stryker, Rosomak, Puma, etc.

According to the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine, Western armored vehicle models are distinguished by enhanced crew protection, reliable engines, excellent mobility, and high-precision weaponry. These features provide an advantage for the Ukrainian military on the battlefield.

“For example, the crew of an M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicle from one of the combat brigades of the Ukrainian Ground Forces successfully disabled a Russian T-90 tank with precise fire from the 25mm M242 “Bushmaster” automatic cannon during one of the battles near Avdiivka,” informed the Ministry of Defence of Ukraine.

Joint security commitments with the EU and security cooperation agreements with Estonia and the Republic of Lithuania

On June 27, Ukraine concluded joint security commitments with the European Union, as well as bilateral security agreements with Estonia and the Republic of Lithuania.

The agreement with the EU will, for the first time, set out a multilateral, long-term commitment by all 27 EU member states to provide Ukraine with support in military, financial, humanitarian, and political areas. The EU guarantees Ukraine long-term assistance with military equipment, defence reform, cyber defence, reconstruction aid, and macro-financial and humanitarian assistance. Also, rapid consultations will determine Ukraine’s needs in case of future Russian aggression.

The same day, Ukraine signed security cooperation agreements with Estonia and the Republic of Lithuania

Estonia will provide over €100 million in defence assistance in 2024 and ongoing ten-year support. In particular, from 2024 to 2027, Estonia will allocate at least 0.25% of GDP annually for military support. Ukraine will also receive various military equipment, and Estonia will help strengthen sanctions against Russia and aid in critical infrastructure reconstruction.

Furthermore, Lithuania will provide annual defence support of 0.25% of its GDP and modern military equipment across the land, air, sea, space, and cyber-electromagnetic domains. The signed agreement includes joint efforts against hybrid threats and nuclear risks, enhanced critical infrastructure protection, and intelligence cooperation. Lithuania will also assist in Ukraine’s rebuilding.

Russian missile attack on Vilniansk

On June 29, the enemy launched two missiles to attack the city of Vilniansk in the Zaporizhzhia region. Due to the Russian missile strikes, a critical infrastructure facility, a shop, and residential buildings were damaged.

A total of seven people, including three children, were killed. 38 more Ukrainian citizens, including nine children, were injured, reported the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine.

Approximately 75 local citizens reported to the police about damage or destruction of property as a result of enemy missile fire.

“The only effective way to stop the aggressor is to strengthen Ukraine’s defence with weapons and air defence. Russia is a terrorist country that understands only force. A strong Ukrainian army means protection from such crimes not only for Ukraine but also for the entire civilized world,” commented Prosecutor General of Ukraine Andrii Kostin on another act of Russian aggression.

Stats of the week

Since January 1, 2024, Ukrainian defenders shot down 1953 out of 2277 Shahed-136/131 drones used by Russian forces to attack different regions of Ukraine.
Source: Mykola Oleshchuk, Commander of the Air Force of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Date: June 25, 2024.

In January-March 2024, arms production in Ukraine increased by an average of 25.4% compared to the same period in 2023.
Source: State Statistics Service of Ukraine.
Date: June 27, 2024.

Since the beginning of 2024, Ukrainian forces have either shot down or seriously damaged more than 30 Russian combat aircraft: 28 attack aircraft of different types, as well as two long-range radar detection aircraft, and one control center plane.
Source: StratCom of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Date: June 28, 2024.

In June, Russian military losses in manpower in Ukraine amounted to 33,713 soldiers.
Source: General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Date: July 1, 2024.

Due to Russia’s full-scale war, more than 144 thousand square kilometers of Ukrainian territories are considered potentially contaminated with mines.
Source: Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine.
Date: July 1, 2024.