Mariupol airport under the control of the DPR forces // Melitopol was attacked by Tochka-U missiles
1 Donbass The operation aimed to liberate the city of Mariupol continues. The Russian forces and the DPR forces are fighting the Ukrainian forces entrenched in the city. They have set up positions among the residential areas, and they use the civilians as human shields. It significantly complicates the operation. The Russian and the DPR forces have repeatedly provided corridors for the evacuation of the civilians. The Ukrainian forces in every possible way prevented the exit of the civilians from Mariupol. A progress in the evacuation of the civilians was achieved only on 16th of March. On 16th of March, over 30,000 of people left Mariupol. Only 31 people left from the territory, controlled by Ukraine. The Mariupol airport is fully controlled by the DPR forces - the RIA NEWS reported. 2 Ukraine On the morning of 18th of March, the Lvov Aircraft Repair Plant was destroyed by a precise missile strike. The aircraft from the Ukrainian air forces, and from other countries of the former "Eastern Bloc" were repaired at that plant. The aircraft repair plant in the city of Zhytomyr, and the Antonov Design Bureau in Kiev were destroyed earlier. The Ukrainian military industry no longer can repair their aircraft. 3 Ukraine "On the night of 18th of March, attacks were carried out from the territory, controlled by the Ukrainian nationalistic regime, on the residential areas of the city of Melitopol. Missiles "Tochka-U" with cluster warheads were used in the attack" - the representative of the Russian Defense Ministry, Major-General Igor Konashenkov, stated and added that the yet another use of ballistic missiles by Ukraine against civilians, when they are aware of the absence of the Russian forces in the residential areas of Melitopol, confirms the criminal nature of the nationalistic leadership of Ukraine. Igor Konashenkov added that "the Russian air defense forces repelled the missile attack on the civilians of the city. The missile attack was carried out from the south-east of Zaporozhye, which is completely controlled by the Ukrainian nationalistic forces" - the RIA NEWS reported. 4 Russia The head of the Russian delegation at the negotiations, the presidential aide Vladimir Medinsky, stated that a meeting between Vladimir Putin and Vladimir Zelensky is possible only after the text of the agreement between the two countries is approved. "The topic of the neutral status, and the non-accession of Ukraine into NATO is one of the key points of the negotiations. The parties pushed their positions on this matter as close as possible" - he explained. 5 The USA - China The US presidential national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, recently threatened China. He promised Beijing that China will totally face the consequences if China helps Russia in any way to overcome the sanctions, imposed by the Western countries. On 18th of March, a telephone conversation will take place between the heads of the USA and China. The White House press secretary, Jen Psaki, stated that the telephone call is an opportunity for the President Joe Biden to figure out which side the Chinese leader supports. She added that Biden and Xi will discuss the issues of the trade and the international supply chains. The main topic will be the Western attempt to pressure Russia over Ukraine. Beijing maintains a neutral position and hasn’t imposed any sanctions against Russia. The USA are afraid that China may switch to full financial, and even military support for Russia. Potentially, China can help Russia to survive the devastating pressure on the Russian banks and currency, but the Western governments may also face the need to impose sanctions against China as well. The Western experts pointed out that the USA and their allies don’t have as much leverage here as with Russia. Any anti-Chinese measures will plunge the world markets into even bigger crisis. 6 Russia The Permanent Russian Representative to the UN Vasily Nebenzia met with the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres - the press service of the UN Secretary General reported. The politicians discussed the situation in Ukraine and Donbass. The UN representatives noted that Guterres expressed an interest in the unified position of the Security Council on Ukraine. Nebenzia has already provided the UN with the documents on Ukrainian missile attack on Donetsk. The Russian authorities noted that the actions of the Ukrainian forces were a war crime against the civilians, and they grossly violate the international right to live, at the level of terrorism. Back on 14th of March, 21 civilians died after the Ukrainian forces attacked Donetsk with a "Tochka-U" missile. 37 people were injured. Constantine Reztsov, specially for the ANNA NEWS.