December 4, 2022

Russia-Ukraine war live: public support in Russia for military campaign ‘falling significantly’, says UK

British ministry of defence says it obtained official confidential survey that shows only 25% of Russians want war to go onWhat we know on day 284 of the invasionThe British MoD has released photographs of Ukrainian recruits training in the UK being issued with their kit for their return to Ukraine.The British Ministry of Defence, in its latest intelligence estimate, has pointed to new signs from an independent Russian media outlet that public support in Russia for the military campaign was “falling significantly”. Continue reading...
December 4, 2022

Vladimir Putin better informed now about Ukraine war, says US

Russian president not as insulated from bad news as earlier in campaign, claims intelligence chiefRussia-Ukraine war – latest news updatesThe head of US intelligence has said Vladimir Putin has “become better informed” about the difficulties facing his invading forces in Ukraine, as the Kremlin suggested the Russian president might visit the occupied Donbas region at a future unspecified date.Speaking at a defence forum late on Saturday, Avril Haines, the US director of national intelligence, indicated Putin was no longer as insulated from bad news about the conditions facing his invasion of Ukraine as he was earlier in the campaign. Continue reading...
December 4, 2022

Macron: Russia needs 'security guarantees' to end the war in Ukraine

His comments on French TV on Saturday have already drawn criticism from some quarters.
December 4, 2022

Iran locked into ‘vicious cycle’ over protests and arming Russia, says US

Washington focusing on protests and Tehran’s support of Russia in Ukraine rather than nuclear talks, envoy saysIran’s leadership has locked itself into a “vicious cycle” that has cut it off from its own people and the international community, the US special envoy has said, adding that Washington was more focused on Tehran’s decision to arm Russia in Ukraine and the repression of its internal protests than on talks to revive the nuclear deal.“The more Iran represses, the more there will be sanctions; the more there are sanctions, the more Iran feels isolated,” Rob Malley, the US special envoy on Iran, told a conference in Rome. Continue reading...
December 4, 2022

‘Our mission is crucial’: meet the warrior librarians of Ukraine

When Russia invaded Ukraine, a key part of its strategy was to destroy historic libraries in order to eradicate the Ukrainians’ sense of identity. But Putin hadn’t counted on the unbreakable spirit of the country’s librariansThe morning that Russian bombs started falling on Kyiv, Oksana Bruy woke up worried about her laptop. Bruy is president of the Ukrainian Library Association and, the night before, she hadn’t quite finished a presentation on the new plans for the Kyiv Polytechnic Library, so she had left her computer open at work. That morning, the street outside her house filled with the gunfire of Ukrainian militias executing Russian agents. Missile strikes drove her into an underground car park with her daughter, Anna, and her cat, Tom. A few days, later she crept back into the huge empty library, 15,000sqft once filled with the quiet murmurings of readers. As she grabbed her laptop, the air raid siren sounded and she rushed to her car.Thanks to that computer, Bruy could work. She didn’t return to her office; instead, she fled west to Lviv. “In all that time, from the first day of the full-scale war, I did not stop working,” she says. The library’s IT specialist lived in the neighbourhood. He kept the servers running and the employees connected. “So there was not a single day’s break in the work of the Kyiv Polytechnical Library, all this time, from 24 February.” The Russians have not shut her down. Oksana Bruy is winning her battle in the Ukrainian war. The libraries are open. Continue reading...
December 4, 2022

The Observer view on a humanitarian calamity in the making | Observer editorial

Without a 25% rise in aid, tens of millions of people will be put at risk of starvation and disease. We must step up to the challengeA grim warning from the United Nations last week that a record 339 million people will need some form of emergency relief in 2023 is a reminder to Britain and European countries that Ukraine is not the only crisis zone in a world beset by extreme climate change, unprecedented food shortages and numerous other conflicts.This is not to minimise the acute distress caused by Russia’s illegal invasion. The UN says nearly half-a-million Ukrainians needed direct winter assistance in recent weeks. Millions more are displaced or lack electricity, heating and water following Russian missile attacks. Continue reading...
December 4, 2022

Russia-Ukraine war at a glance: what we know on day 284 of the invasion

The Kremlin says Russia ‘will not accept’ a price cap on its oil after EU members agree on one, while president Volodymyr Zelenskiy says the cap will do little to deter RussiaSee all our Ukraine war coverageRussia “will not accept” a price cap on its oil and is analysing how to respond, the Kremlin said in comments reported on Saturday, in response to a deal by western powers aimed at limiting a key source of funding for its war in Ukraine. The price cap on Russian seaborne oil was adopted by the G7 and Australia, after it was agreed by EU countries.President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said the $60 price cap on seaborne Russian oil is not serious and will do little to deter Russia from waging war in Ukraine. “It’s only a matter of time before stronger tools will have to be used anyway. It is a pity that this time will be lost,” he said in a video statement on Saturday.US treasury secretary Janet Yellen said the cap will particularly benefit low- and medium-income countries that have borne the brunt of high energy and food prices. “The price cap will immediately cut into (President Vladimir) Putin’s most important source of revenue,” Yellen said in a statement.Russia’s embassy in the US criticised what it called the “dangerous” western move and said Moscow would continue to find buyers for its oil.US defense secretary Lloyd Austin on Saturday accused Russia of “deliberate cruelty” in its war in Ukraine, saying Moscow was intentionally targeting civilians. “With deliberate cruelty, Russia is putting civilians and civilian targets in its gunsights,” Austin told the Reagan National Defense Forum in Simi Valley, California.Ukraine is slapping sanctions on 10 senior clerics linked to a pro-Moscow church on the grounds they agreed to work with Russian occupation authorities or justified Moscow’s invasion, the security service said on Saturday. The announcement is the latest in a series of steps against a Ukrainian branch of the Orthodox Church linked historically to Moscow. The Orthodox Church in Russia itself backs the war.Eighteen Ukrainian diplomatic missions in 12 countries have received bloody packages, including animal parts, in what Ukraine has described as a “campaign of terror and intimidation”. Oleg Nikolenko, a spokesperson from Ukraine’s foreign ministry, said the packages were simultaneously sent from one European country, which he could not disclose while the investigation was ongoing.The west should consider how to address Russia’s need for security guarantees if Vladimir Putin agrees to negotiations about ending the war in Ukraine, the French president, Emmanuel Macron, said. He said Europe needed to address Putin’s fear that “Nato comes right up to its doors”, and the deployment of weapons that could threaten Russia, as Europe prepares its future security architecture, Reuters reports.The Ukrainian army has recaptured 13 settlements in the Luhansk region, the eastern-most oblast in the country, according to the head of the regional administration, Serhiy Haidai. He said that artillery was still being fired at the villages by Russian forces. Doctors are due to visit next week and firewood is being organised for residents, Haidai posted on Telegram.Russian forces are concentrating most of their strength on taking the town of Bakhmut in Donetsk, according to the British Ministry of Defence.Ukraine has detained eight people over the theft of a mural painted by the elusive British street artist Banksy from a wall in the Kyiv suburbs, authorities said. The stencil image of a person in a nightgown and gas mask holding a fire extinguisher next to the charred remains of a window in the town of Hostomel went missing on Friday, they said. Continue reading...
December 3, 2022

Russian army ‘came knocking’ to recruit son of slain spy Alexander Litvinenko

The poisoned agent’s son Anatoly tells of the visit to his Moscow flat, as ITV prepares to screen a drama about the killing of his father, played by David TennantAnatoly Litvinenko: How the Kremlin tried to conscript meThe Moscow home of the son of Alexander Litvinenko, the defector killed with polonium-210 in London in 2006, has been visited by recruiting officers from the Russian army hoping to sign him up.Anatoly Litvinenko, 28, has revealed that he was called up for military service in Ukraine a few weeks ago by soldiers who seemed unaware of his tragic history with Vladimir Putin’s regime. Continue reading...
December 3, 2022

Russia-Ukraine war live: Kyiv says ‘sick’ packages sent to its embassies following letter bomb in Madrid

Ukraine’s foreign minister says 17 diplomatic missions have now received suspicious packages What we know on day 283 of the invasionMore details have been published about attacks on Ukraine on Friday, in an update from the general staff of the Ukrainian armed forces.They said Russia continues to shell civilian infrastructure and is trying to go on the offensive in Avdiivka and Bakhmut. Continue reading...
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