Russia's military invasion of Ukraine continues.

Russian and Ukrainian forces are fighting in various parts of Ukraine, and many civilians have fled the country. We will update the situation in Ukraine on the 26th (Japan time), including the status of the battle and the diplomacy of the countries concerned.

(There is a 6-hour time difference between Japan and Ukraine and Moscow, Russia)

"Russian Navy's Black Sea Fleet Commander Dead" Ukrainian Military Claims

Special operations forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine claimed on social media on the 25th that "34 senior officers, including the commander of the Black Sea Fleet, were killed" in a series of attacks this month aimed at the headquarters of the Russian Navy's Black Sea Fleet in the southern Crimean port city of Sevastopol.

Several Ukrainian media outlets have reported the view that the commander was appointed by President Putin last year.

On the other hand, local media on the Russian side have negatively reported the claim that the commander was killed, citing several officials including the Russian Ministry of Defense, saying, "The commander of the Black Sea Fleet was not at the facility at that time, which is false information."

Crimea, where Russia's Black Sea Fleet is stationed and a strategically important base, has been attacked one after another by the Ukrainian military this month, and the Ukrainian side, which is conducting a counter-offensive, is poised to intensify its attacks on military facilities in Crimea.

Main battle tank "Abrams" arrives in Ukraine

Ukrainian President Zelensky announced in a post on SNS on the 25th that the main battle tank "Abrams", which the United States had planned to provide as military support, had arrived in Ukraine.

President Zelensky expressed his gratitude, saying, "Abrams is already in Ukraine and is preparing to strengthen our forces, and we are grateful to our friendly countries for fulfilling the agreement."

The U.S. Army said that the Abrams had excellent mobility in addition to its high offensive capabilities, and the Biden administration of the United States announced in January that it would provide Ukraine with 1 Abrams.

"Drone strikes important in dealing a blow to Russian military strength"

Regarding the successive attacks by drones on military airfields in Russia, Ukrainian military experts have analyzed that the Russian military has moved its domestic air defense systems to the front line so that it can attack, and that a series of attacks are important in dealing a blow to the Russian military strength.

Mr. Musienko, a military expert in Ukraine, told NHK earlier this month that the spate of attacks by drones on military airfields in Russia "is aimed at damaging Russian aircraft and weakening the strength of the air force," and said that it is important to damage the strength of the Russian military.

On top of that, he analyzes that "the Ukrainian side has been able to attack by transferring many air defense systems from western Russia, such as the Russian-occupied Crimea, the southern Kherson Oblast, and the eastern Donetsk Oblast."

Commenting on the attack on Russia, Mr. Msienko said: "There is a psychological goal to put pressure on the Russian authorities and citizens. The results are coming back to us."