US defence secretary Lloyd Austin made an unannounced visit to Kyiv in a high-profile push to keep money and weapons flowing to Ukraine. After travelling to Kyiv by train from Poland, Austin met President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, defence minister Rustem Umerov and chief of staff General Valerii Zaluzhnyi.
Austin announced the Pentagon would be sending an additional $100m in weapons to Ukraine from existing US stockpiles, including artillery and munitions for air defence systems. The package also includes another High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or Himars. Austin said Ukraine’s effort to defeat Russian forces “matters to the rest of the world” and that US support would continue “for the long haul”.
Ukraine sacked two senior cyber defence officials, a government official said, as prosecutors announced a probe into alleged embezzlement in the government’s cyber security agency. Yurii Shchyhol, head of the state service of special communications and information protection of Ukraine (SSSCIP), and his deputy, Viktor Zhora, were dismissed by the government, senior cabinet official Taras Melnychuk wrote on Telegram.
Ukrainian forces were engaged in containing increasing Russian attacks on Monday around the shattered eastern town of Bakhmut, which was seized by Moscow in May, military officials said. Volodymyr Fityo, a spokesperson for Ukrainian ground forces, said Russian troops focused attacks on Klishchiivka, a nearby village on heights retaken by Ukrainian forces in September.
Russia barred entry to a number of officials from Moldova on Monday and complained about moves by its pro-European government to block Russian media outlets ahead of local elections earlier this month. The moves were the latest in a series of acerbic exchanges between the two sides and allegations by Moldova that Russia has been exerting pressure on the ex-Soviet state’s affairs and President Maia Sandu’s drive to join the European Union.
Zelenskiy met Fox Corp CEO Lachlan Murdoch in the Ukrainian capital in what Kyiv said on Monday was a “very important signal” of support at a time when global media attention has shifted from the war in Ukraine. Media titan Rupert Murdoch’s eldest son is a leading figure in media with a US Republican-leaning audience. His visit comes as concern in Ukraine mounts over the future of vital American military and economic aid with the war with Russia showing no end in sight.
Russia has placed a Ukrainian singer who won the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest on its wanted list, state news agencies reported Monday. The reports said an Interior Ministry database listed singer Susana Jamaladinova, known as Jamala, as being sought for violating a law adopted last year that bans spreading so-called fake information about the Russian military and the ongoing fighting in Ukraine.
Two people were killed early on Monday after Russian forces shelled a parking lot in the southern Ukrainian city of Kherson, authorities said. Regional prosecutors opened a war-crimes investigation into the artillery strike, which injured one other person, the regional prosecutor’s office said.
An elderly woman was also killed and a man injured in Russian artillery strike on the town of Nikopol, in the central region of Dnipropetrovsk, the regional governor said. “A power line and a gas pipeline were damaged,” Serhiy Lysak said on Telegram.