Germany pledges €200 million in new aid for Ukraine

Deutsche Welle

Posted at Sep 05 2022 11:39 AM

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (R) welcomes Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal (L) befoire reviewing the honour guard at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, 04 September 2022. Hannibal Hanschke, EPA
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (R) welcomes Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal (L) befoire reviewing the honour guard at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, 04 September 2022. Hannibal Hanschke, EPA

German Development Minister Svenja Schulze told local media the government will provide Ukraine with €200 million ($199 million) for aid programs assisting internally displaced people.

"The bulk of our new aid, €200 million, is to go to a program run by the Ukrainian government to support internally displaced persons," Schulze told the Funke Media group on Sunday.

"The money is intended to help ensure that the displaced people in Ukraine can continue to provide themselves with the most basic necessities," she added.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal, who is set to visit Berlin on Sunday, will meet Schulze as well as German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

"I will speak to Prime Minister Shmyhal about how we can continue to support the Ukrainian government in caring for the displaced people," Schulze said.

Around 7 million people have been internally displaced in Ukraine since Russia's invasion began in late February, according to the United Nations International Organization for Migration.

Here's a look at some of the other major news stories from Russia's war in Ukraine on September 4.

US ambassador leaves Russia at end of mission

The US ambassador in Moscow John Sullivan left Russia after completing his diplomatic term there, the embassy said in a statement.

The 62-year-old Sullivan was appointed ambassador to Moscow in December 2019.

"Elizabeth Rood will assume duties as Charge d'Affaires at US Embassy Moscow until Ambassador Sullivan's successor arrives," the embassy said in a press release.

Sullivan was assistant secretary of state under the presidency of Donald Trump, and held several senior positions in the justice, defense and commerce ministries throughout his career.

More German troops arrive in Lithuania

Around a hundred German soldiers arrived in Lithuania after Germany pledged to increase its presence on NATO's eastern flank following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

The troops departed from the ferry in the port city of Klaipeda. They were to form the command unit of a new brigade, a group typically made up of around 4,000 soldiers.

The command unit would remain permanently in the Baltic nation, while combat units would join them for exercises, the brigade's commander Christian Nawrat said.

Germany, which leads a NATO combat group in Lithuania, already has around 1,500 German soldiers in Lithuania.

Zelenskyy says Ukrainian troops take three settlements in south and east

In his nightly video address, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said his troops captured two settlements in southern Ukraine, and a third settlement in the east of the country.

He did not say precisely where the territories were and provided no timeline. Zelenskyy thanked the Ukrainian military for liberating a settlement in the eastern Donetsk region, the taking of "certain heights" also in an eastern area in the Lysychansk-Siversk direction and liberating two southern settlements.

However, earlier on Sunday, a senior Zelenskyy aide posted an image of soldiers raising the Ukrainian flag over a village he described as being in a southern region of Kherson that Ukraine is targeting in a new counteroffensive.

"Vysokopillya. Kherson region. Ukraine. Today," Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy head of the president's office, wrote in a Facebook post about a photo of three soldiers on rooftops, one of whom was fastening a Ukrainian flag to a pole.

Russian diaspora in Germany holds rare rally against sanctions

Some 2,000 mostly Russian-speaking protesters staged a demonstration in Cologne demanding Germany stop supporting Ukraine and drop sanctions against Russia.

A few hundred counter-protesters also gathered to express support for Ukraine.

Germany is home to some 3 million people of Russian ethnic background but there have been relatively few pro-Russian rallies since the start of the war.

Russian-speaking diaspora groups in Cologne organized Sunday's demonstration.

Local media reported that some spectators hurled abuse at the protesters as they made their way through the city.

Reuters news agency reported the organizers collected donations for Russian-backed separatist forces in eastern Ukraine's Donbas region.

Italian politicians tipped to lead Italy differ over sanctions

The front-runner to become Italy's next prime minister, leader of the right-wing nationalist Brothers of Italy party Giorgia Meloni, has taken a clear position in favor of support for Ukraine and sanctions against Russia.

"If Italy lets go of its allies, for Ukraine, nothing changes, but for us, a lot changes. A serious nation that wants to defend its interests must take a credible position," she told delegates at an economic forum held in Cernobbio.

"The war in Ukraine is the tip of the iceberg of a conflict aimed at reshaping the world order," she said on Sunday.

Her remarks are in sharp contrast to those by her right-wing coalition partner, Matteo Salvini, leader of the League Party, who told delegates that sanctions the West had imposed on Russia weren't working.

He said the EU should shield people in countries such as Italy who were suffering the economic effects of sanctions against Russia.

"If we want to go ahead with the sanctions, let's do it, we want to protect Ukraine — but I would not want that to mean that instead of harming the sanctioned, we harm ourselves," he said.

Following Salvini's comments, center-left Democratic Party leader Enrico Letta called the remarks "irresponsible" and said it "risks causing very serious damage to Italy, to our reliability and to our role in Europe."

"When I hear Salvini talk about sanctions, I feel like I'm listening to Putin's propaganda."

Russia preparing 'decisive blow' in energy sector — Zelenskyy

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has accused Russia of waging an energy war and is planning a "decisive blow" for the winter.

"Russia is trying these days to increase the energy pressure on Europe even more; The pumping of gas through Nord Stream has been completely stopped," Zelenskyy said in his nightly address.

"Russia wants to destroy the normal life of every European — in all countries of our continent," Zelenskyy warned while calling for greater unity in Europe.

On Saturday, Russian energy firm Gazprom announced an indefinite shutdown of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline between Russia and Germany, citing a gas leak.

More on the conflict in Ukraine

Deceiving the enemy is an important tactic in war. Throughout history, military strategy has involved the use of dummies — be it fake guns, tanks, airplanes, or soldiers. DW takes a look at military deception in the Ukrainian context.

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