There’s been heavy fighting across the eastern frontlines, while Kyiv also reported renewed Russian shelling in the south of the country. Ukrainian forces are doing all they can to save Bakhmut amid some Russian advances, according to Pavlo Kyrylenko, the head of the Donetsk region military administration.
Here are more developments:
Military assistance. Ukraine’s top national security official told CNN he’s confident Ukraine will eventually receive American-made F-16 fighter jets, saying that “it’s only a matter of time.” And Leopard 2 battle tanks from Germany will be ready for Ukraine to use at the end of March, according to a tweet from the German army. Ukrainian Minister of Defense Oleksii Reznikov thanked Germany’s pledge to send the tanks. Germany, as well as Denmark and the Netherlands, also announced they will send more than 100 Leopard 1 battle tanks to Ukraine by the spring of 2024. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said the West’s supplying of heavy weapons is dragging out the war and drawing NATO countries into the conflict.
Developments on the ground. Ukrainian officials reported at least six explosions in Kharkiv on Tuesday. And over the past 24 hours, more than 30 settlements in the Donetsk, Kharkiv and Luhansk regions came under fire, with several districts and villages around Bakhmut coming under attack as well, the Ukrainian General Staff said. The Defense Intelligence of Ukraine on Tuesday dismissed Russia’s claims that it has taken control of several small settlements in the Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia regions. Also, Russian forces in eastern Ukraine appear to be stockpiling ammunition and building up troop reserves ahead of an offensive that could begin in weeks, Ukraine’s top official in the Luhansk region said. Meanwhile, Ukraine’s top national security official, Oleksiy Danilov, hinted at Kyiv’s ability to strike Russia on its own territory, beyond occupied Ukraine.
Leadership changes. The Ukrainian government approved the appointment of three new regional governors on Tuesday in the Dnipropetrovsk region, the Zaporizhzhia region and the Kherson region, according to the Office of the President. Ukraine’s parliament has also approved the appointment of a new interior minister and head of the security dervice. Ukraine’s defense minister, whose continued tenure has been questioned by the leader of President Volodymyr Zelensky’s party in parliament, on Tuesday posted the message “holding the line” on Twitter.