Ukraine War Update: U.S. to expand military presence in Europe, Macron calls mall attack ‘new war crime’

by mcardinal

Chris Lange, FISM News


President Biden told assembled NATO leaders Wednesday that he is expanding the U.S. military presence in Europe. This will include establishing a permanent headquarters in Poland, dispatching two additional F-35 fighter jet squadrons to the U.K., and sending more “air defense and other capabilities” to Germany and Italy. Biden said the U.S. will also shore up its military assets in Romania and the Baltic region.

“NATO is strong and united, and the steps we’re taking during this summit, we’re going to further augment our collective strength,” Biden said Wednesday.

“Today I’m announcing [that] the United States will enhance our force posture in Europe and respond to the changing security environment as well as strengthening our collective security,” the president continued. 

The United States provides the bulk of NATO’s military power.

‘New war crime’

Moscow also ramped up its attacks on multiple fronts across Ukraine on Wednesday. Russian forces launched strikes on targets in the Mykolaiv area of southern Ukraine, killing at least three people in a residential building, according to the city’s mayor. 

In the east, the governor of Luhansk province reported “fighting everywhere” in the battle around the hilltop city of Lysychansk Russian troops have been attempting to encircle. 

The governor of Kryvyi Rih in central Ukraine said Russian shelling has intensified there over the past few days, noting that “several villages have been wiped from the face of the earth.” 

The stepped-up attacks follow a missile strike on a shopping mall in central Ukraine that killed at least 18 people Monday. Dozens more were injured, and more than 20 people remain missing as officials continue to search for survivors. 

French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday called the attack a “new war crime,” adding that Moscow “cannot and should not win” the war.

Elsewhere, a hearing to determine whether Ukraine’s Azov Regiment defenders captured in Mariupol are a terrorist entity was postponed for the second time Wednesday. Moscow’s Supreme Court did not offer an explanation as to what prompted the decision and has rescheduled the hearing to Aug. 2.

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