1. Ukraine: Russia stalls peace negotiations. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrey Rudenko said that “negotiations are not continuing.” He blamed Ukraine for not agreeing to Russian terms. Mykhailo Podolyak, the advisor to the Ukrainian president’s office, said that negotiations “are paused.” (Source: UP).
1. Russian parliament to consider a ban on exchanging Azov POWs. Russia’s parliament will consider banning the exchange of Russian prisoners of war for captured members of the Azov regiment, Russian state-controlled RIA Novosti reported. On May 26, the Russian Supreme Court will consider recognizing Azov as a terrorist organization. 264 Ukrainian soldiers, including Azov fighters, were evacuated from the Azovstal plant in Mariupol to the Russian-occupied territory. Ukraine said they would be exchanged for Russian POWs. (Source: RIAN).
1. Sumy Oblast governor: 76 explosions were reported on May 17. Dmytro Zhyvytsky said that Russian forces had attempted to break through the Ukrainian border in the oblast, and there were fires along the border caused by shelling. (Source: Telegram).
1. Denisova: Russian forces hold over 3,000 Mariupol residents in ‘filtration prison.’ According to ombudsman Lyudmyla Denisova, Russians hold them in what used to be a penal colony in the Olenivka village, Donetsk Oblast. There are about 30 volunteers who tried to bring humanitarian aid to besieged Mariupol among them, Denisova said. According to the official, civilians are tortured with electric shocks before being brought to the colony. (Source: Telegram).
Economy, Social life, and Culture
1. Israeli embassy returns to Kyiv. Israeli Ambassador to Ukraine Michael Brodsky raised the Israeli flag near the embassy building in Kyiv on May 17, the embassy wrote. (Source: Twitter).
2. Ukraine launches mobile groups to monitor nuclear and chemical threats. Chief State Sanitary Doctor Ihor Kuzin said that groups launched in every region would quickly respond to emergencies if Russian forces used these banned weapons. “We must be ready to react to any situation,” he said. (Source: UP).
2. At least 7 buses with Azovstal defenders leave the steel plant on May 17. The buses carrying Ukrainian soldiers were escorted by Russian forces, Reuters reported citing a witness. Some of the Ukrainian fighters transported did not appear to be wounded, the witness said. 264 Ukrainian soldiers, including 53 heavily wounded, were evacuated from Azovstal in Mariupol to the Russian-occupied territory on May 16. Ukraine said they would be exchanged for Russian POWs. (Source: Reuters).
1. G7 finance ministers planning 15 billion euros in aid for Ukraine. The Finance Ministers of G7 are planning to put together a 15 billion euro aid package for Ukraine, Reuters reported citing an anonymous senior German official. German newspaper Der Spiegel earlier said that G7 may initiate budget support worth almost 30 billion euros for Ukraine. (Source: Reuters).
1. Lviv Oblast Governor: Russian missile attack caused damage to railway infrastructure. Regional Governor Maksym Kozytsky said that the Russian forces hit a railway infrastructure facility in the Yavoriv district overnight, but no reports of injuries or death so far have been reported. The official thanked Ukraine’s Air Defense for shooting down three cruise missiles. (Source: Telegram).
2. Russian airstrike on Chernihiv Oblast kills at least 8 people, and injures 12 others. Suspilne media reported the casualties citing the local State Emergency Services. Chernihiv Oblast Governor Viacheslav Chaus earlier reported that the Russian airstrike hit the village of Desna, where a military training center is located. (Source: Suspilne).
1. Finnish parliament approves NATO membership application. The parliament members voted in favor of applying to join NATO on May 17. Finland and Sweden have been considering joining NATO to boost their defense since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24. (Source: CNN).