The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Russian forces face strong resistance amid stark reminders of war’s toll

Russian missiles hit central Kyiv on April 28, according to Ukrainian officials, while the U.N. Secretary General António Guterres was visiting the city. (Video: The Washington Post)
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Russian forces appear to be “at least several days behind where they wanted to be” in a new assault on the eastern Donbas region, the Pentagon said Friday. The stalled offensive comes as vast quantities of military weapons and equipment from the United States and other countries arrived in Eastern Europe for transfer into Ukraine, according to a senior U.S. defense official who spoke on the condition of anonymity under ground rules set by the Pentagon.

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At the same time, there were stark reminders of the war’s human toll. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Friday that officials discovered that about 900 civilians have been killed in an area near the Kyiv region. President Biden also said he was mourning the death of Willy Joseph Cancel, a U.S. citizen and Marine veteran whose family said he was killed in the fighting in Ukraine this week.

A fractious European Union debate about halting Russian oil imports will continue through the weekend, as softening opposition from Germany makes a deal more likely but far from guaranteed. The ban is seen as increasingly critical to undercut a tent pole of Russia’s economy as the war enters its third month.

Here’s what else to know

  • Surging energy prices are posing a growing problem for Europeans economies.
  • As Ukrainian officials wait to see whether there will be an evacuation of the Azovstal steel plant, a Mariupol official said Friday that the area remains “under tank fire” from Russian troops.
  • A Ukrainian journalist was killed in Thursday’s missile attack on the capital, Kyiv, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty said.
  • The Washington Post has lifted its paywall for readers in Russia and Ukraine. Telegram users can subscribe to our channel for updates.