Russia-Ukraine War Newsletter – FEBRUARY 19-25, 2024

2 years of Russia’s full-scale war

  • President V.Zelenskyy stated that during the full-scale invasion by Russia, 31 thousand Ukrainian military personnel were killed.
  • Russian forces continue intensive attacks in several directions in the east and south in an attempt to break through the defenses of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
  • During the week, the Ukrainian military destroyed several Russian aircraft, including an A-50 airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft
  • The Ukrainian military carried out effective strikes on Russian military training grounds in the temporarily occupied territories, as well as on industrial facilities on the territory of Russia.
  • Ukraine has signed the bilateral Agreements on security cooperation with Denmark, Canada, and Italy. 
  • The European Union has adopted the 13th package of sanctions against Russia aimed at limiting the military-industrial potential of the Russian Federation in the production of unmanned aerial vehicles.


Russian troops continue offensive in several areas of the front. In the Zaporizhzhia direction, they are trying to capture the village of Robotyne, which was liberated as a result of the summer counteroffensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. In the Donetsk area, Russian forces are seeking to advance on the gains made after capturing Avdiivka. In addition, they carry out intensive attacks in the Maryinka, Bakhmut and Kupiansk directions, as well as against the bridgehead on the left bank of the Dnipro River in the Kherson region, which is held by the Ukrainian military.

Russian troops continue daily strikes of the territory of Ukraine, using missiles and kamikaze drones. On the night of February 20, Ukrainian air defense shot down all 23 Russian drones used; on the night of February 21 – 13 out of 19 UAVs used; on the night of February 23 – 23 out of 31 drones; on the night of February 24 – 12 drones; on the night of February 25 – 16 out of 18 drones. During the week, the targets of attacks were the territories of the frontline regions of Ukraine, Poltava, Khmelnytskyi, Odesa and Dnipropetrovsk regions (where a kamikaze drone hit a multi-storey building on the night of February 23).

During the week, the losses of civilians in different regions of Ukraine as a result of the actions of the Russian military amounted to at least: in the Donetsk region – 5 people killed and 30 people wounded; in the Kherson region – 2 people killed and 22 people wounded; in the Kharkiv region – 3 people killed and 7 people wounded. 5 civilians were killed in Sumy region. In Odesa region, 4 people were killed and 3 people were injured. At least 1 person was killed in Zaporizhzhia region. In Dnipropetrovsk region, 2 people were killed and 11 people were injured.

The Armed Forces of Ukraine are striking at Russian military infrastructure and industrial potential. During the week, two strikes were recorded on the training grounds of the Russian military in the temporarily occupied territories of Donetsk and Kherson regions, which caused large-scale casualties. On the February 19, an oil depot in the temporarily occupied Makiivka was attacked. On the night of February 24, a UAV attack was recorded against a metallurgical plant in Lipetsk, which is one of the largest in Russia. Also during the week, the Ukrainian military reported the destruction of several Russian aircraft, including the A-50 airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft. Russian sources confirm the loss of the aircraft, but claim that it was the victim of “friendly fire” from Russian air defenses.


During a press conference on February 25, 2024, President of Ukraine V. Zelensky announced that 31,000 Ukrainian military personnel were killed during the full-scale invasion of the Russian Federation, while the number of casualties on the Russian side was 180,000 people.

According to representatives of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the Russian armed forces shot wounded Ukrainian servicemen who remained surrounded in the stronghold “Zenit” on the outskirts of Avdiivka, despite agreements reached regarding evacuation. The organization of evacuation and further exchange of severely wounded and unarmed Ukrainian fighters was agreed upon between the Ukrainian and Russian sides in advance.

The border blockade by Polish protesters continues. On February 20, 2024, protesters completely blocked the movement of trucks and partially restricted the movement of buses and passenger vehicles at certain border crossings. On February 25, Ukrainian agricultural products were scattered at the Polish railway station Kotomierz; 160 tons of grain destined for transit to the port of Gdansk were damaged.

The Ukrainian government is proposing a plan for mutual understanding with Poland and is ready for “reasonable compromises” regarding the unblocking of the border. To this end, on February 23, 2024, representatives of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine arrived at the border with Poland to settle the issues related to the blockade; however, the Polish representatives did not attend the meeting.

As of February 21, 2024, the agricultural sector of Ukraine has suffered over 80 billion US dollars in direct losses and damages due to the full-scale armed invasion by the Russian Federation. The total value of destroyed assets amounts to 10.3 billion US dollars; 56.7% of all losses are attributed to damaged and destroyed agricultural machinery.

As of the end of 2023, Ukraine’s state and state-guaranteed debt amounted to $145.3 billion. Over the year, it increased by $33.9 billion. In total, in 2023, Ukraine received external financing totaling $42.5 billion, of which $11.6 billion (or 27%) was non-repayable grant assistance. Grant assistance was provided by the United States, Japan, Norway, Germany, Spain, Finland, Switzerland, Ireland, Belgium, and Iceland. Long-term concessional credit financing amounted to a total of $30.9 billion, including from the EU ($19.5 billion), the IMF ($4.5 billion), Japan ($3.4 billion), Canada ($1.8 billion), the UK ($1 billion), the World Bank ($660 million), and Spain ($50 million).


On the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy held talks with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, and Prime Minister of Belgium Alexander De Croo, who visited the capital of Ukraine on February 24th. Also this week, the head of state met with the Minister of Defense of the Kingdom of Sweden, Paul Jonsson, with the Prime Minister of Denmark Mette Frederiksen, and with a delegation from the United States Senate led by Democratic Majority Leader Chuck Schumer. As a result of the negotiations, bilateral Agreements on cooperation in the field of security between Ukraine and Italy, Canada, and Denmark were signed.

On February 24th, the leaders of the G7 countries and the President of Ukraine held an online summit on the anniversary of Russian aggression against Ukraine. Following the summit, a joint declaration in support of Ukraine was approved, in which the leaders of the G7 countries reaffirmed their long-term intentions to provide security and financial assistance to Ukraine, strengthen sanctions, and block Russian assets.

On February 23rd, a meeting of the General Assembly on the agenda item “Situation in temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine” took place. Among the speeches of representatives from 64 countries, the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Dmytro Kuleba, emphasized the importance of implementing the Peace Formula and called on international leaders to participate in the Global Peace Forum, which will take place in Switzerland. Also on the same day, the UN Security Council held open debates on the second anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

On February 22nd, Volodymyr Zelenskyy held a meeting with heads of foreign missions and international organizations accredited in Ukraine. During the meeting, the President of Ukraine outlined the main directions of cooperation for 2024, including protection against Russian terror through military and financial assistance from partners, work on implementing the Peace Formula, continuation of defense cooperation, control over sanctions, and confiscation of Russian assets.

On February 19th, the Conference on Economic Development and Reconstruction of Ukraine took place in Tokyo, during which 56 documents were signed with the participation of the Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal and the Prime Minister of Japan Fumio Kishida: intergovernmental agreements, memoranda, agreements between businesses, and representatives of local authorities.

International partners are strengthening Ukraine’s military capabilities by announcing new defense packages this week. Canada will allocate over 3 billion Canadian dollars (over $2.2 billion) in macro-financial and defense assistance to Ukraine in 2024, and Canada also plans to transfer 800 modern combat drones to Ukraine for almost $73 million. The UK government announced the allocation of £245 million (almost $310 million) to Ukraine for the purchase of artillery ammunition, as well as the transfer of additional Brimstone 2 anti-tank aviation missiles. Denmark has allocated a new defense package worth about 1.7 billion Danish kroner (approximately $228 million), which includes providing Ukraine with artillery ammunition, air defense equipment, demining equipment, and drones. The Swedish government announced a new military assistance package to Ukraine, which includes infantry fighting vehicles CV90, fast combat boats CB90, and other equipment and weapons. New Zealand announced a new assistance package for Ukraine worth $25.9 million. 

In addition, the European Commission announced the allocation of €75 million for humanitarian projects in Ukraine.

International sanctions against the strengthening of Russian military capabilities are intensifying. On February 23rd, the European Union adopted the 13th package of sanctions against Russia, which includes 106 individuals and 88 legal entities related to the Russian military and defense sectors. The EU also imposed additional restrictions on the export of components for the development and production of drones and the export of goods that contribute to the increase of Russian industrial potential. At the same time, the EU Council added the United Kingdom to the list of partner countries imposing sanctions on the import of iron and steel from Russia. In turn, Canada imposed new sanctions against Russia, including restrictions on 10 individuals and 153 legal entities providing goods and services to the Russian military-industrial complex. The United States imposed more than 500 sanctions against Russia and new export restrictions for nearly 100 organizations aimed at the Russian financial sector, defense-industrial base, procurement networks, and individuals evading sanctions on multiple continents. The UK announced over 50 new sanctions targeting individuals and legal entities associated with Russia’s military-industrial complex.

Also this week, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy held a phone conversation with the President of the European Council, Charles Michel.

The information in the newsletter is collected from official sources—reports of state authorities of Ukraine, Ukrainian and international news agencies. The accuracy of the data is carefully checked by the project team and corrected in case of fake news.