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US Secretary of State visited Ukraine, Russian army shelled Kharkiv - Tuesday brief

US Secretary of State visited Ukraine, Russian army shelled Kharkiv - Tuesday brief RBC-Ukraine collage

Yesterday, May 14, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken arrived in Ukraine on a visit. Meanwhile, the Russian military fired several times at Kharkiv.

RBC-Ukraine has collected the main news for May 14.

Zelenskyy shares key topics for talks with US Secretary of State: Air defense and Peace Summit

The main topics of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's talks with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken were the supply of arms to Ukraine, primarily air defense systems, the Ukraine-US security agreement, and preparations for the June Peace Summit.

"Air defense systems are the biggest deficit for us. We need two Patriots for the Kharkiv region," Zelenskyy said.

In turn, Secretary of State Blinken says that part of the American aid from the latest package approved by Congress has already arrived in Ukraine, while part is still on the way and will "make a difference."

He adds that there are a number of critical issues in the coming months, and the US and Ukraine, along with many other partners, want to make sure that these next months are successful, as there are challenges to overcome together.

Massive strike on Kharkiv: Details and photos of aftermath

On May 14, the Russian forces attacked the center of Kharkiv in the afternoon. A multi-story building was hit.

According to the State Emergency Service, the Russian army struck residential areas of Kharkiv with missiles and aerial bombs.

Aircraft munitions hit a 20-story building, causing damage.

According to the latest data from the prosecutor's office, 21 civilians were injured in the attack. Among them are six men, 11 women and three children - two girls aged 12 and 8, and a 12-year-old boy.

At least 20 residential and non-residential buildings were also damaged, including a shopping center, an educational institution, and a store.

Commander-in-Chief reports to Zelenskyy from front: It's too early to draw conclusions, but situation is under control

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy heard a report from the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Oleksandr Syrskyi, who is currently in areas of key combat operations.

According to Zelenskyy, Syrskyi reported on the situation in Donetsk and Kharkiv regions, which are currently the most challenging directions.

"He (Syrskyi) is currently in key battle areas - working with brigades, in combat positions. It is too early to draw conclusions, but the situation is under control,” the President emphasized.

He noted that Ukrainian defenders continue to destroy the enemy which is still trying to advance.

The Head of State said that Ukraine had reinforced several directions, including the Kharkiv direction.

France to transfer missiles for SAMP/T air defense system to Ukraine - Ministry of Armed Forces

France is preparing new military assistance for Ukraine, involving missiles for the SAMP/T air defense system, states

France is sending Ukraine a new batch of Aster 30 surface-to-air missiles for previously supplied SAMP/T complexes.

Sébastien Lecornu, French Minister of Armed Forces, announced this during parliamentary hearings, stating that he has just signed the contract for the second batch of Aster missiles.

This will enable the SAMP/T system, which France transferred together with Italy, to continue operating and destroying Russian missiles.

US Secretary of State on Ukraine in NATO: Once conditions fulfilled and allies agree, accession will be swift

NATO will increase its role in the process of integrating Ukraine into the North Atlantic Alliance, which will eventually lead to its full membership.

"When we hold the Washington Summit in July, we'll take tangible steps to increase NATO's role in building a resilient, capable Ukrainian force, supporting its ongoing reforms that are integrating Ukraine into the alliance," said US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

He emphasized that all these measures will facilitate Ukraine's accession to NATO, and the process itself should be swift and smooth.

The Secretary of State added that despite this, Ukraine will still need to meet the conditions for accession, and the NATO member countries will need to agree on it.

'Enemy blocked': Ukrainian spy chief on situation in Kharkiv region

The active phase of the Russian border operation is currently underway in the Kharkiv region. However, the Ukrainian Defense Forces have already blocked the Russian troops.

"The active phase of the Russian border operation in the Kharkiv region is underway. It is not true to say that they are having significant success. But we must remember that the situation is tense and changing very quickly," said Chief of the Defense Intelligence of Ukraine Kyrylo Budanov.

According to him, last night there was a tendency toward stabilization.

"That is, the enemy has already been blocked at the borders where it could have entered... The situation is not catastrophic. There is no need to panic. The main goal of the Russian Federation in this operation is an information operation to create chaos. To force our groups to retreat to the east. But this is not happening," Budanov says.

EU Council approves plan under Ukraine Facility program: €1.9 billion to be allocated

The European Union's Economic and Financial Affairs Council has approved the Ukraine Plan under the EU's Ukraine Facility for 2024-2027.

"Thus, the procedure for launching direct budget support under the first pillar of the Ukraine Facility is almost complete. In the near future, Ukraine will receive EUR 1.9 billion of pre-financing," the statement says.

According to the press service, Ukraine will receive the rest of the budget support every quarter after fulfilling the indicators set out in the Ukraine Plan.

Ukraine's spy chief suggests Russia may move toward Sumy after Kharkiv region offensive

Ukrainian forces are expected to fortify their positions and stabilize the front in the Kharkiv region over the next few days. However, Russia is anticipated to launch a new offensive further north of Kharkiv, in the Sumy region.

Kyrylo Budanov, the head of the Main Intelligence Directorate, expressed expectation that attacks in the Kharkiv region would continue for another three to four days, after which Russian forces are expected to make a powerful strike towards Sumy.

Ukrainian officials had previously said that Russia had amassed troops along the border near Sumy.

Meanwhile, Pavlo Velychko, a Ukrainian officer operating near the Russian border in the Sumy region, reported increased Russian shelling of the Sumy outskirts lately.

"I have no idea if it means anything because those places were often shelled anyway. In any case, we are in full combat readiness," he said.