Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has called for more speed in arms deliveries to his country. Ukraine most urgently needs more air defense systems and Western fighter jets, Zelensky said in his daily video address. “Unfortunately, the free world lacks speed in these two issues.”

Due to air superiority, Russia could attack cities with glide bombs and destroy Ukrainian defensive positions. According to him, the Russians used this destructive tactic particularly actively on the front sections near Kharkiv and in the Donetsk region in the direction of Chasiv Yar and Pokrovsk.

Zelensky has already asked several times in the past few days for the delivery of two additional Patriot anti-aircraft systems. This would allow the city of Kharkiv, which is repeatedly attacked from the air, to be better protected, he said. The city in northeastern Ukraine is particularly badly affected by the war.

The fighter jets also mentioned by Zelensky were promised to Ukraine a year ago. According to official information, the F-16 aircraft have still not arrived in the country. According to experts, Russia can prepare for the new weapons thanks to the West’s generally long delivery times.

Several injured in Russian attacks on Kharkiv

According to official reports, at least seven people have been injured in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv as a result of new Russian attacks. “The enemy attacked Kharkiv throughout the night,” the region’s military governor, Oleh Synyehubov, said on Telegram. Debris from combat drones that the Ukrainian air defense shot down fell in several parts of the city and caused damage to buildings and vehicles. According to Synjehubow, the injured include a 61-year-old man and two women aged 69 and 72.

Other Ukrainian regions were also attacked by Russia with combat drones during the night – including Odessa, Mykolaiv and Dnipropetrovsk. The Ukrainian Air Force said 28 of a total of 29 drones could have been shot down across the country.

No more Patriots for Kyiv for now

A Ukraine Contact Group video conference made no progress on Zelensky’s request. In the meantime, around ten countries are supposed to support the search carried out by Germany for further elements of the Patriots anti-aircraft defense system. But there are only promises for additional ammunition and spare parts, not for another anti-aircraft complex. Nevertheless, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin praised the German initiative.

At the same time, Austin emphasized that Ukraine should concentrate on “close combat,” i.e. the defense of its own country against the occupiers. Kiev had recently also requested longer-range missiles to strike the Russian hinterland in order to prevent troop build-ups there and to destroy strategically important objects for the military, such as oil refineries. According to media reports, this tactic has met with criticism in Washington.

Spain confirms delivery of additional Leopard tanks

As announced, Spain wants to deliver more older Leopard 2A4 main battle tanks to Ukraine by the end of June. Defense Minister Margarita Robles confirmed this at the video conference of the Ukraine Contact Group, the government said in Madrid. The promised delivery dates will be met and additional Patriot anti-aircraft missiles and various types of ammunition will also be sent.

The left-wing government of Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez had already sent ten Leopard 2A4s to Ukraine last year. In March it announced the deployment of a total of 19 more tanks of this type this year. The first ten have been promised by the end of June, with nine more to follow in September.

Ukraine speaks of urban warfare in a small town

After the new Russian ground offensive, heavy fighting continues in northeastern Ukraine. The Ukrainians say they have stopped the Russian attack in the Kharkiv region in the city of Vovchansk. The front line currently runs along the Vovcha River, which divides the northern half of the city from the south, said the military governor of the Kharkiv region, Oleh Synyehubov, on Ukrainian television.

The Russian military is unable to advance any further. “On the contrary, our soldiers are trying to retake this settlement house by house, street by street.” According to him, the Russian advance further west has also been slowed down. Synjehubow’s statements could not be independently confirmed.

Ten days ago, Russia launched a ground offensive in the Kharkiv region to extend the front line and overload the Ukrainian defenders. After quickly gaining ground at the beginning and capturing several villages near the border, the pace of the Russian advance has fallen significantly in the past few days, according to independent observers. But it hasn’t come to a complete standstill yet.

Explosions in Russian-controlled city in eastern Ukraine

According to the occupation authorities, a fuel depot caught fire during rocket attacks on the small town of Sverdlovsk in the Russian-occupied Luhansk region in eastern Ukraine. In 2016, Ukraine renamed the small town of Sverdlovsk, which had been occupied by Russian forces since 2014, to Dovzhansk.

According to Ukrainian media, a Russian troop base was also hit in the rocket attack. Videos on social networks showed heavy clouds of smoke, but also a burning multi-story barracks-style building. Officially, the Russian authorities on site did not provide any information on the number of dead or injured.