Russian troops continue their advance in eastern Ukraine. A refinery is hit by a drone in Russia. The German Chancellor calls for the preparation of a “Marshall Plan” to rebuild the country devastated by the invasion. Franceinfo looks back on what to remember from the day. Russian troops continue to advance in eastern Ukraine Forces from Moscow are advancing towards the strategic cities of Severodonetsk and Lyssychansk. Russian artillery “completely destroyed” Lyssychansk, according to information from Ukrainian officials. A representative of pro-Russian separatists said Ukrainian forces defending the two communes were about to be surrounded, after weeks of fighting. A military representative also said on Russian television that Ukrainian forces had been surrounded in the villages of Hirske and Zolote, the day after the capture of the neighboring town of Tochkivka. The Ukrainian resistance pocket around Lyssytchansk and Severodonetsk is the only one that still escapes Russian forces in the Luhansk region. At least 22,000 people have died in Mariupol since the start of the invasion, according to the mayor Ukrainian mayor Vadim Boychenko described this estimate as “conservative”, during a press conference. “It is much more than in two years of occupation by Nazi Germany,” added the official. Still according to him, 100,000 people still live in this city now controlled by the Russian army, 50,000 are in Russia and 40,000 in other countries. The industrial city and its inhabitants were besieged and bombarded by Russian forces for several weeks. A suspected drone attack on a Russian refinery A fire broke out on Wednesday in an oil refinery located in a region of Russia bordering Ukraine. “According to one version, the fire was caused by a drone attack on the technical installations of the plant. Fragments belonging to two drones were found on the territory” of the refinery, the governor of the city said on Telegram. Rostov-on-Don region, Vasily Golubev, without further details. According to him, the fire caused no casualties and was extinguished at the end of the morning. Refinery operations will be suspended pending the conclusion of an investigation to assess the extent of the damage, he added. Olaf Scholz calls for a “Marshall Plan” to rebuild Ukraine The German Chancellor held up the plan for Europe’s reconstruction that had been drawn up by the United States after the Second World War as an example during a speech to the deputies from across the Rhine. “Like Europe devastated by the Second World War, Ukraine today needs a Marshall Plan for its reconstruction”, he declared, adding that this will cost “several billions” and will spread over “several generations”. The German official, who had visited Ukraine last week with his French and Italian counterparts, also recalled the extent of the support already given to Kyiv by the EU. He added that this new “Marshall Plan” will only be “possible by joining forces, in collaboration with international financial organizations, with other major donor countries and with other international organizations”. “The truth is that we are still far from negotiations between Ukraine and Russia because Putin still believes in the possibility of being able to dictate peace”, judged Olaf Scholz. He therefore called on Westerners to “firmly maintain the course” of support for kyiv through sanctions, financial assistance and “arms deliveries”. EU must “rise to the occasion” and grant candidate status to Ukraine and Moldova, says Commission President This is a “historic responsibility”. The President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, has again called on the Member States of the European Union to “rise to the occasion” and grant Ukraine and Moldova candidate status for entry. in the EU, in a speech at the European summit. According to Brussels, Ukraine “has already implemented around 70% of EU rules, norms and standards”, although “significant work remains to be done”, particularly in the fight against corruption. Georgia, which also hoped to join the EU, will still have to carry out reforms, according to the Commission’s opinion.
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