The Russian invasion of Ukraine, a year on 

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On 24 February, 2022, Russia launched an attack on neighbouring Ukraine. 

However, this conflict isn’t new – it originates all the way back to 2014 – but in 2022, it escalated incredibly. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin began by sending in troops through different fronts and firing missiles in several locations around the capital Kyiv, killing thousands, sending millions fleeing, and rocking the global markets.

Putin stated that the “special military operation” was due to “demilitarisation” and “denazification” to protect Russians, prevent NATO membership for Ukraine, and to keep the country in Russia’s “sphere of influence”. 

Attempts to claim the capital early on were unsuccessful as they were met with fierce resistance from the Ukrainian military and President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. 

But what has occurred over the past year? 

  • 2022 

    March 2

    Russia claims control of the southern city of Kherson. 

    March 16

    A strike hits a theatre in the city of Mariupol, killing hundreds of people and making it one of the war’s deadliest attacks. 

    March 29

    Russia withdraws hundreds of soldiers from Kyiv and other areas to focus on the eastern front, revealing hundreds of bodies within mass graves or even on the streets of the town Bucha. 

  • April 9

    A missile strike on Kramatorsk train station kills 52 civilians and wounds over 100. 

  • June

    Ukraine is supplied with even more western weapons, including US-supplied rocket launchers. 

  • July 22

    Russia and Ukraine, with arbitration from Turkey and the United Nations, agree to unblock grain suppliers stuck at Ukraine’s Black Sea port, ending a major threat to global food security. 

  • September 6

    Ukraine launches a surprise counter attack in the north-eastern Kharkiv region, forcing Russia to quickly pull back from areas they had held for months. 

    September 21

    Putin orders the active duty of 300,000 citizens, causing many Russian men to flee to neighbouring countries to avoid recruitment. 

  • October 8

    An explosion damages the bridge connecting Crimea to Russia’s mainland. 

  • November 9

    Russia announces a pullback from the city of Kherson. 

  • December 21

    Zelenskyy travels to the US to meet with President Biden, address Congress, and secure more weapons and missile systems.

  • 2023 

    January 13

    The Russian military states that it has captured the settlement of Soledar. 

    January 31

    It was announced the US government was preparing to send a $2 billion aid package to Ukraine. 

As of February 2022, the Russian military is preparing to make its next major offensive move in the eastern Luhansk region. 

Additionally, many major nations are calling for Russia and Belarus to be banned from the 2024 Olympics. 

Featured image credit: Mathias Reding on Pexels.

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BA(Hons) International Politics and Languages
Politics and Music journalist

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