Espreso. Global

Victorious news on 456th day of war: 106 defenders return from Russian captivity, Pentagon chief pledges further support for Ukraine's Air Force

26 May, 2023 Friday
00:22

Ukraine has returned more than a hundred heroes from Russian captivity, the ‘economic visa-free regime’ with the EU will be valid for another year, and Finland has approved another military aid package

106 more defenders return home

Ukraine has managed to bring home 106 servicemen. These are the soldiers who fought in the Bakhmut sector. Eight officers and 98 privates and sergeants have returned home.

"They fought for Bakhmut and made a feat that prevented the enemy from advancing further into our east. Each of them is a hero of our country. Among those we are returning from captivity, many were considered missing. The relatives of these people have gone through a difficult stage," wrote the Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Yermak.

The Defence Intelligence of Ukraine added that the oldest of the released servicemen is 59 years old, and the youngest is 21 years old. In total, 2,430 people have been returned home as a result of the exchanges. Among them are 139 civilians.

EU extends 'economic visa-free regime' with Ukraine for a year

The EU Council has extended the ‘economic visa-free regime’ with Ukraine. Therefore, Ukrainian companies exporting goods to the EU will not pay any customs duties, quotas or tariffs until at least June 2024.

"These measures are designed to help Ukraine maintain stable trade relations with the EU and support the country's economy in a very difficult environment," the EU Council said in a statement. It emphasises that this decision, together with significant military, financial and humanitarian assistance, is crucial to support Ukraine's long-term recovery.

This regulation applies to exports of fruit and vegetables subject to the input price system, as well as agricultural products and processed products subject to the tariff quota system.

New military aid package for Ukraine from the Finland

Finland will provide another package of military assistance to Ukraine worth EUR 109 million. It will include, among other things, anti-aircraft weapons and ammunition.

On 25 May, the President of Finland supported the government's proposal. According to Defence Minister Antti Kaikkonen, Finland will continue to support Ukraine together with its international partners.

"For operational reasons and to ensure the safe delivery of aid, no further information will be provided on the specific content, delivery method or schedule of the aid," the press service said.

Lloyd Austin pledges further support for the Air Force

At the opening of the 12th Ramstein, US Secretary of Defence Lloyd Austin praised the work of air defence in Ukraine and promised further support for the Air Force.

According to Austin, training of the Ukrainian military on F-16 fighters will begin in the coming weeks.

"This will further strengthen and improve the capabilities of the Ukrainian Air Force in the long term. And it will complement our short- and medium-term security agreements," the Pentagon chief said.

He also praised the work of air defence systems that shoot down enemy targets over Ukraine.

"Ukrainians now have the Patriot air defence system on their side, provided by the United States, Germany and the Netherlands. And Ukraine is accurately and skilfully shooting down Russian missiles. Patriot saves lives. As well as air defence systems such as IRIS-T and NASAMS, which were also supplied by this group. We have helped Ukraine defend its skies. And we will not back down," Austin said.

Ukrainian Armed Forces counter-offensive has been going on for several days

Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to the head of the Office of the President of Ukraine, said that the Ukrainian Armed Forces' offensive has been going on for several days. The fighting has stretched over 1,500 kilometres along the border with Russia.

"The counter-offensive has been going on for several days now, an intense war is going on along 1,500 kilometres of the border, but the fighting has already begun. We will use the weapons we have been given to destroy the Russian positions in the territories occupied by Moscow, including Donbas and Crimea," Podolyak said.

He noted that Ukraine will not strike at Russian territory and stressed that F-16 fighter jets will allow Ukraine to close its airspace and achieve significant success.

"If we had them a year ago, the war would have been over by now," Podolyak said.

Tags:
Read also:
  • News
2024, Saturday
2 March
20:30
Aircraft carrier for drones to be built in Black Sea by Portugal’s request
20:11
Exclusive
Putin breaks golden rule of intelligence: expert on publication of Bundeswehr talks about Taurus strike on Crimea bridge
19:55
Exclusive
Crimea bridge is primary strategic target to be destroyed - British Colonel Grant
19:39
Ukraine shoots down another Russian Su-34 fighter jet
19:24
Ukrainian army targets 336 Russian soldiers and 258 UAVs in Tavria sector
19:06
Russia signals readiness to hand over bodies of POWs from IL-76: Ukrainian military intelligence responds
18:45
Russia’s attack on Odesa leaves at least 7 killed, including 2 children
18:26
"Better give Ukraine weapons than send troops" - Polish Defense Minister
17:58
Exclusive
Kremlin played it safe with its main opponent - Feygin on Navalny's murder
17:30
Exclusive
Putin perceives West as very weak — British Colonel Grant
16:56
Bedbugs in Paris: Russian agents spread panic, link it to Ukrainian refugees
16:29
Exclusive
Russia sends battalion for assaults every day - Ukrainian military on fighting in Kreminna sector
16:00
Substation supplying three defense plants explodes in Yekaterinburg, Russia
15:47
Updated
Russian drones attack Kharkiv and Odesa, killing at least 5, including child
15:35
Russia announces test of Yars ballistic missile to scare West, force it to cut Ukraine aid - ISW
15:02
Exclusive
Operation on Tendra Spit, where Ukrainian spec ops soldiers died, had no strategic or tactical value - Major General Kryvonos
14:33
Review
Map of fighting in Bakhmut sector
NATO in Ukraine. Repulsing attacks in Zaporizhzhia region, situation in Avdiivka. Weekly military results 
13:55
Review
Ukraine’s demographic apocalypse: millions of refugees, war losses and how to address population challenges
13:23
"A lot depends on commander": Syrskyi explains why some AFU brigades fail to hold line
12:55
Argentina donates two Russian-built military helicopters to Ukraine
12:30
Updated
Russian army loses 14 tanks, 47 artillery systems, 960 troops per day - Ukraine's General Staff
12:00
Russian night attack: air defense forces destroy 14 of 17 Russian Shahed drones
11:35
"Ukraine needs to boost its air shield": Zelenskyy reacts to Russia's night attack
10:40
Explosion in St. Petersburg: Russian media claim UAV hit building
2024, Friday
1 March
21:55
Review
Victorious news on 737th day of war: destroyed Russian equipment near Synkivka, explosions in Crimea
21:40
OPINION
Putin is too old to build regime 2.0
21:20
Ukrainian soldiers target elite Russian assault group in Avdiivka sector
20:58
Russian army tries to break through Ukraine's defense 25 times in Novopavlivka sector
20:36
Exclusive
France destroys Putin's 'red lines' - analyst of National Institute for Strategic Studies
20:12
Ukraine's army shoots down 228 UAVs in February, including 116 Lancets
19:42
Netherlands announces new military aid package for Ukraine: what it includes
19:20
Exclusive
Navalny's murder might motivate resistance, radicalise protests in Russia — sociologist Eidman
18:57
NATO: Putin's threats to use nuclear weapons is psychological intimidation
18:35
Russian missiles attacks Donetsk region, injuring civilians, damaging police station, hospital, kindergartens
18:14
Ukraine, Netherlands sign security agreement: what does it provide for?
17:50
Exclusive
Map of fighting in Marinka sector
Under heavy fire: Ukrainian officer on situation in Marinka sector
17:25
Frozen Russian assets won't replace US aid to Ukraine - Treasury Secretary Yellen
17:00
Exclusive
Why Scholz is hesitant to transfer Taurus to Ukraine?
16:40
Russian troops bomb residential buildings in Zaporizhzhia region, killing civilian man
16:20
Exclusive
Measuring temperature in chamber: diplomat on China's special envoy's trip to number of countries
More news