Ukraine still fighting to preserve independence | US Embassy warns of Russian military strikes | Duda praises Ukrainian heroism on visit to Kyiv | US to announce 3 billion USD in security assistance for Ukraine | Gdynia sailors discover unusual stowaway

(fot. General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine)

Today marks 31 years since Ukraine regained its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991 and exactly six months since Russia invaded the country on February 24, 2022.

The Russian invasion has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of Ukrainian civilians and soldiers and forced millions to flee. Thirteen percent of Ukrainian territory is currently under Russian occupation.

Russia is thought to be focusing its efforts on gaining control over the entire Donetsk region while maintaining the occupied areas of the Kherson region and parts of the Kharkiv, Zaporizhia, and Mykolaiv oblasts.

According to the US-based Institute for War Studies (ISW), Russia is sending National Guard troops (Rosguard) to the Luhansk Oblast due to the waning support for the war among separatists from the so-called Luhansk People’s Republic.

Russian troops are reportedly still continuing to fire on Ukrainian villages and positions along the front lines.

Source: Radio Gdańsk

The US embassy in Kyiv issued a security alert to American citizens on Tuesday, warning of an increased possibility of Russian military strikes on Ukraine in the coming days.

“The Department of State has information that Russia is stepping up efforts to launch strikes against Ukraine’s civilian infrastructure and government facilities in the coming days,” the embassy said in a statement on its website. It urged all US citizens “to depart Ukraine now using privately available ground transportation options if it is safe to do so.”

Authorities in Kyiv have banned public celebrations in the capital on the anniversary of independence from Soviet rule, citing a heightened threat of Russian attacks, the Reuters news agency reported. Strict curfews are in effect in many parts of Ukraine, particularly in the Kharkiv region. Residents are encouraged to seek shelter when air alert sirens sound and stay at home if possible.

Source: PAP, Radio Poland,

(fot. KPRP/Jakub Szymczuk)

Polish President Andrzej Duda pledged more economic and military aid to Ukraine on a visit to Kyiv yesterday, as Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine passed the six-month mark.

During a press conference with President Volodymyr Zelensky, Duda expressed his “great respect for the Ukrainian people” and “their extraordinary heroism,” saying that Warsaw was unwavering in its support of Kyiv and that “the Polish people stand with the people of Ukraine and will support them until the last day of the war.”

Speaking to reporters after his talks with Zelensky, Duda said that Poland would continue to provide political, economic, humanitarian, and military assistance to its war-torn neighbor, Polish state news agency PAP reported.

While in the Ukrainian capital on Tuesday, Duda also participated in the Second Summit of the Crimea Platform initiative to discuss international support for Ukraine. Addressing the mostly online gathering, the Polish president unequivocally declared that “just as Gdańsk or Lublin is a part of Poland, so Crimea is Ukraine.”

He went on to assert that Ukraine „must return to the situation it had before the Russian invasion” and „all areas that were occupied by Russia must be liberated.”

Source: Radio Poland, PAP,

The United States is set to announce around USD 3 billion in new security assistance to Ukraine on Ukrainian Independence Day, according to local news reports.

The package would be the single largest allocation to Kyiv since Russia’s invasion six months ago, bringing the total amount of US military assistance to Ukraine to over USD 13 billion.

Citing an anonymous US official, Reuters reported that the new aid package would use funds from the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative (USAI) appropriated by Congress to allow President Biden’s administration to procure weapons from industry rather than taking weapons from existing US stocks.

As such, the weapons may take months to arrive as companies would need to procure them. The package reportedly includes similar arms that have already been delivered to Ukraine, with a focus on ammunition and defense systems.

Source: Radio Poland, Reuters

Earlier this week, sailors on a cargo ship moored at the Baltic Container Terminal in Gdynia found an unusual stowaway on board.

Oskar, an African gray parrot, had apparently escaped from a Gdynia family over the weekend and had been hiding onboard the vessel for several days. Upon finding the bird, one of the sailors took the animal into his cabin and notified security. The EkoPatrol of the Municipal Police was called to the site and was later able to track down the bird’s owner in Gdynia.

Ms. Ewa, the owner, was thrilled to be reunited with her family pet of over twenty years, and Oskar also reportedly “screeched with joy” upon seeing his owner.

He was promptly returned to his birdcage in Gdynia, apparently none the worse for wear.

Source: Radio Gdańsk


Today will be partly cloudy and humid, with a slight chance of rain and a light breeze coming in from the north. Temperatures will peak around a high of 23°C, or 74°F, dropping to an overnight low of 19°C or 67°F. Similar weather is expected for tomorrow, with skies clearing and temperatures heating up starting on Friday.

Elizabeth Peck/am

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