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Russia-Ukraine war: Moscow warns of ‘serious negative impact’ for Lithuania over goods blockade – live | World news

Russia threatens ‘serious negative impact’ on population of Lithuania over goods blockade

Russia has threatened consequences that will have “a serious negative impact on the population of Lithuania” as the row over restrictions of goods transiting the Baltic state to the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad worsened.

Hosting a meeting in Kaliningrad, Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of the security council of the Russian Federation said:

Russia will certainly respond to such hostile actions. Appropriate measures are being worked out in an interdepartmental format and will be taken in the near future. Their consequences will have a serious negative impact on the population of Lithuania.

The RIA Nostovi Russian news agency quotes him saying that “the blockade by Lithuania, at the suggestion of Western countries, in violation of the norms and principles of international law, of the transit through its territory to the Kaliningrad region of a large group of goods … shows that one cannot trust not only the oral statements of the west, but also written ones.”

At the same time as Patrushev was in Kaliningrad, the European Union ambassador to Russia was summoned to the foreign ministry in Moscow.

After the meeting, Reuters reports Markus Ederer said he had asked Russia to resolve the issue through diplomatic means. He said it was not a blockade by Lithuania, as the transit of non-sanctioned goods continues. Lithuania argues that it is only preventing the shipment of goods across its territory in accordance with new EU sanctions that came into force at the weekend.

Reuters notes that their report of Ederer’s meeting was produced in Russia, where the law restricts their coverage of Russian military operations in Ukraine.

Russian forces capture Donbas frontline village near Sievierodonetsk, says Ukraine

Russian troops have captured the frontline village of Toshkivka near the twin cities of Sievierodonetsk and Lysychansk in the Donbas region.

The head of the Severodonetsk district military administration, Roman Vlasenko, told Ukrainian television:

As of today, according to our information, Toshkivka is controlled entirely by the Russians.

The battle for Donbas is “now in full swing”, Vlasenko said, adding that the entire region is “now the epicentre of fighting between Ukraine and the Russian army”.

Vlasenko told CNN that the village had not been under Ukrainian control since Monday.

Toshkivka is located approximately 25 kilometres (15 miles) south of Sievierodonetsk, where Ukrainian forces have mounted fierce resistance to Moscow’s armies for weeks.

Yesterday, Russian-backed separatist forces in Ukraine said the village had been taken.

US volunteer fighters captured in Ukraine could face death penalty, says Russia

Peter Beaumont

The Kremlin has said that two captured US volunteers are not covered by the Geneva conventions and could face the death penalty.

The remarks were made by Kremlin spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, following claims in the Russian media that two of three US volunteers missing in Ukraine had been captured and were being held by pro-Russian separatist forces.

The two men were taken into detention by Russian-backed separatists in Donetsk after being captured last week, according to Russian state media.

Alexander Drueke, 39, and Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, 27, both from Alabama, were filmed on Russia’s RT channel at a detention centre in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) on Friday.

Alexander Drueke, 39, and Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, 27.
Alexander Drueke, 39, and Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, 27. Composite: Reuters/Associated Press

The threat of the death penalty against the two men follows the sentencing to death of two Britons and a Moroccan who surrendered in Mauripol after fighting with Ukrainian forces, amid some suggestions that Russia may use the men to bargain for the release of captured Russians.

While Russia has a moratorium on the death penalty, that moratorium does not extend to the self-styled DPR despite being a proxy of Moscow.

The two Americans went missing earlier this month during a battle north of Kharkiv.

Read the full article here.

A fire that broke out after Ukrainian forces allegedly attacked oil rigs in the Black Sea off the coast of Crimea is approaching an oil well, according to a pro-Russian official.

The Russian-backed leader of annexed Crimea, Sergei Askyonov, blamed Kyiv for yesterday’s attack, which allegedly hit a platform owned by a Crimean oil and gas company. Three people were wounded and a search was under way for seven workers, he said on Monday.

A Russian senator for Crimea, Olga Kovitidi, told the Interfax news agency:

As for the fire, it is not subsiding on the platform. At night, the fire approached the oil well.

She said the “search continues” for the seven missing persons, while the three injured are in hospital but their condition is not critical.

Germany’s chancellor, Olaf Scholz, said Berlin will send weapons to Ukraine “as long as needed” while reaffirming its commitment to stand with Lithuania and other eastern allies.

He said his trip to Kyiv last week to meet Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelenskiy made clear to him that Ukraine belongs to Europe, in a speech to Germany’s industry association.

The west does not “accept the violent attack on Ukraine”, he said, therefore Ukraine was being supplied “extensively with weapons” and “unprecedentedly tough sanctions” were imposed on Russia.

Scholz said:

These sanctions do work. Yes, these sanctions are hurting ourselves as well. They hurt our companies, but they are right.

He added:

One thing is clear: we will continue to support Ukraine, also with weapons, for as long as Ukraine needs our support.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz Photograph: Clemens Bilan/EPA

The UK government is “determined” to impose further sanctions on Russia and will continue to do so until Moscow fully withdraws from Ukraine, Britain’s foreign secretary Liz Truss said.

Britain will continue to impose sanctions and to stop importing goods from Russia “until we see Russia fully withdraw from Ukraine”, Truss said in a statement to parliament.

Truss said:

We are determined to provide more weapons, impose more sanctions and back Ukraine in pushing Russia out of their territory.

She said she would be travelling to Turkey on Wednesday to discuss options to help get grain out of Odesa, and that there was only a matter of weeks to find a solution.

Russian authorities have blocked the website of the British newspaper the Telegraph for its coverage of the war in Ukraine.

The country’s communications watchdog Roskomnadzor confirmed that access to the site was restricted after it was found to have disseminated “inaccurate information about the special military operation conducted by Russia’s armed forces on the territory of Ukraine”, the Russian state-owned news agency Tass reported.

The move was triggered by Russia’s prosecutor general banning an article the Telegraph published in February about mobile crematoriums poised to be deployed in the war.

The prosecutor ruled the article contained “false information” and entered it on the list of “banned information”.

Last week, Russia’s foreign ministry banned 29 members of the British media, including five Guardian journalists, from entering the country in response to western sanctions and the “spreading of false information about Russia”.

Vladimir Putin said Russia will “further strengthen” its armed forces to take into account potential military threats and risks, Reuters reports.

Russia’s newly tested Sarmat intercontinental ballistic missiles, capable of carrying 10 or more nuclear warheads and decoys, will be deployed for duty by the end of the year, Putin added.

Footage recently released by the Donetsk region governor purports to show a fire at a school in Adviivka after it was hit by Russian shelling.

Pavlo Kyrylenko said the school is the third one in the city to be damaged by Russian troops, claiming almost 200 schools have been destroyed in total in the Donetsk region since the beginning of invasion.

Ukrainian school engulfed in flames after being hit by Russian shelling – video

The Kremlin’s spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, said he “can’t rule out” Americans captured in Ukraine might face the death penalty.

At his regular briefing, Peskov said:

These are court decisions. We don’t comment on them and have no right to interfere.

The Kremlin did not know where the men were, he added, after their families said they had not returned from a mission around the Kharkiv region.

Speaking to reporters yesterday, Peskov said the two US citizens detained in Ukraine were mercenaries not covered by the Geneva Conventions and should face consequences for their actions.

At the briefing today, he also said Ukraine has not tried to restart peace negotiations with Russia

Hello. I’m Léonie Chao-Fong and I’ll be bringing you all the latest developments from the war in Ukraine. Feel free to get in touch on Twitter or via email.

Today so far …

  • Russia has demanded that Lithuania immediately lift a ban on the transit of goods on an EU sanctions list across its territory to the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad. Hosting a meeting in Kaliningrad, Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of the security council of the Russian Federation, said “Russia will certainly respond to such hostile actions. Their consequences will have a serious negative impact on the population of Lithuania.”
  • The European Union ambassador to Russia, Markus Ederer, was summoned to the foreign ministry in Moscow over the issue. He said he had asked Russia to resolve the issue through diplomatic means.
  • Russian officials have accused Ukraine of launching missile strikes against three gas rigs in the Black Sea south of Odesa, in an apparent escalation of Kyiv’s attempts to weaken Russia’s maritime dominance. Seven people were reported missing and three injured after the strikes on Monday, according to the head of occupied Crimea, Sergey Aksyonov.
  • Three people were killed and seven people were injured by Russian shelling on the Kharkiv region in the last 24 hours, according to governor Oleh Synyehubov.
  • Two Americans captured in Ukraine are currently in the Russian-backed separatist region of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine, the Interfax news agency has reported, citing an unidentified source. There are fears that the pair could face the death penalty. The Kremlin has said the two US men were mercenaries, not covered by the Geneva convention, and that they should face responsibility for their actions.
  • Russia’s foreign ministry press secretary, Maria Zakharova, has said that “the western regimes that instigate and cause destruction should be blamed” for any global grain shortage, since their “illegitimate sanctions that have disrupted the established commodity-money chains.”
  • European countries are united in their support for granting Ukraine the status of European Union member candidate, Luxembourg’s foreign affairs minister has said. Jean Asselborn told reporters “We are working towards the point where we tell Putin that Ukraine belongs to Europe, that we will also defend the values that Ukraine defends.”
  • The upcoming decision whether to grant Ukraine candidacy for membership to the EU is making Russia “very nervous”, Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelenskiy said in his latest nightly address on Monday night. “We are moving towards the main decision of the European Council, which will be adopted on Friday. As I predicted, Russia is very nervous about our activity.”
  • Georgia’s prime minister, Irakli Garibashvili, has said his country is committed to joining Nato, but must solve its territorial problems with Russia first.

That is it from me, Martin Belam, for now. I will be back later on today. I am handing you over to my colleague Léonie Chao-Fong.

Russia threatens ‘serious negative impact’ on population of Lithuania over goods blockade

Russia has threatened consequences that will have “a serious negative impact on the population of Lithuania” as the row over restrictions of goods transiting the Baltic state to the Russian enclave of Kaliningrad worsened.

Hosting a meeting in Kaliningrad, Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of the security council of the Russian Federation said:

Russia will certainly respond to such hostile actions. Appropriate measures are being worked out in an interdepartmental format and will be taken in the near future. Their consequences will have a serious negative impact on the population of Lithuania.

The RIA Nostovi Russian news agency quotes him saying that “the blockade by Lithuania, at the suggestion of Western countries, in violation of the norms and principles of international law, of the transit through its territory to the Kaliningrad region of a large group of goods … shows that one cannot trust not only the oral statements of the west, but also written ones.”

At the same time as Patrushev was in Kaliningrad, the European Union ambassador to Russia was summoned to the foreign ministry in Moscow.

After the meeting, Reuters reports Markus Ederer said he had asked Russia to resolve the issue through diplomatic means. He said it was not a blockade by Lithuania, as the transit of non-sanctioned goods continues. Lithuania argues that it is only preventing the shipment of goods across its territory in accordance with new EU sanctions that came into force at the weekend.

Reuters notes that their report of Ederer’s meeting was produced in Russia, where the law restricts their coverage of Russian military operations in Ukraine.

The Baltic states have asked for more financial support from the EU to handle Ukrainian refugees, the Lithuanian president’s office has said.

“We must share the financial burden, which at the moment is unproportionally assigned to national budgets. EU solidarity is very important to assure proper support to war refugees from Ukraine”, Reuters reports Lithuania’s president, Gitanas Nauseda, said in a statement.

Two Americans captured in Ukraine being held in occupied Donetsk – reports

Two Americans captured in Ukraine are currently in the Russian-backed separatist region of Donetsk in eastern Ukraine, the Interfax news agency has reported, citing an unidentified source.

The arrival of US citizens Andy Huynh and Alexander Drueke in the separatist region will raise fears that the pair, both from Alabama, could face charges there. Britons Shaun Pinner and Aiden Aslin and Morroccan citizen Brahim Saadoun were sentenced to death by a Donetsk separatist court earlier this month. Russia does not carry out the death penalty, but its proxies in the self-styled Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics do.

The Kremlin has said the two US men were mercenaries, not covered by the Geneva convention, and that they should face responsibility for their actions.

Reuters reports it could not immediately verify the Interfax report on the location of the Americans, and that a spokesperson in Donetsk declined immediate comment.

Here are some of the latest images sent to us from Ukraine and beyond over the newswires depicting the impact of Russia’s latest invasion of Ukraine, which began on 24 February.

Internally displaced children attend a holiday on World Refugee Day, Zaporizhzhia, southeastern Ukraine.
Internally displaced children attend a holiday on World Refugee Day, Zaporizhzhia, south-eastern Ukraine. Photograph: Future Publishing/Ukrinform/Getty Images
Flames rise from a structure after it was hit by a projectile on 20 June in Druzhkivka,
Flames rise from a structure after it was hit by a projectile on 20 June in Druzhkivka. Photograph: Scott Olson/Getty Images
Volodymyr Zelenskiy (L) with the US actor Ben Stiller (R), a UNHCR goodwill ambassador, during a meeting in Kyiv on Monday.
Volodymyr Zelenskiy (L) with the US actor Ben Stiller (R), a UNHCR goodwill ambassador, during a meeting in Kyiv on Monday. Photograph: Ukrainian Presidential Press Service Handout/EPA
Servicemen fire a salvo in tribute to Ukrainian servicemen Vladislav Andreev killed in Donetsk region, during his funeral ceremony at Bucha’s cemetery.
Soldiers fire a salvo in tribute to Ukrainian servicemen Vladislav Andreev killed in Donetsk region, during his funeral ceremony at Bucha’s cemetery. Photograph: Sergei Supinsky/AFP/Getty Images
Mayor of Kramatorsk Oleksandr Goncharenko speaks during an interview in the city.
Mayor of Kramatorsk Oleksandr Goncharenko speaks during an interview in the city. Photograph: Anatolii Stepanov/AFP/Getty Images
The 2021 Nobel Peace Prize that has been auctioned to raise funds for Ukraine.
The 2021 Nobel Peace Prize that has been auctioned to raise funds for Ukraine. Photograph: Jason Szenes/EPA

European countries are united in their support for granting Ukraine the status of European Union member candidate, Luxembourg’s foreign affairs minister has said.

Reuters reports Jean Asselborn told reporters before a meeting with other EU ministers: “We are working towards the point where we tell Putin that Ukraine belongs to Europe, that we will also defend the values that Ukraine defends.”

Andrew Roth

Andrew Roth

The sister of Brahim Saadoun, the Moroccan man who was captured while serving in the Ukrainian military, has said she feared he has been abandoned by his own government and has called on the international community to “claim my brother”.

“I just want any authority, anybody who is willing to help, to come and help,” Iman Saadoun said in an interview with the Guardian, describing being left in limbo while seeking government support for him.

Saadoun was one of three men sentenced to death by Russian proxies in eastern Ukraine in a show trial designed to mimic the convictions of Russian soldiers for war crimes. The other two were the Britons Aiden Aslin and Shaun Pinner. The foreign secretary, Liz Truss, has said she will do “whatever is necessary” to secure their release.

Morocco has sought not to criticise Russia, a member of the UN security council, over its invasion of Ukraine. While European countries have largely condemned the war, pro-Russian views are more mainstream in the Middle East and Africa.

Iman said the local press and many people on social media had celebrated her brother’s sentence.

Read more of Andrew Roth’s report here: ‘He’s been betrayed’: sister of Moroccan man captured in Ukraine pleads for help

The Russian security council secretary, Nikolai Patrushev, has arrived in the Kaliningrad region, where he will chair a meeting on national security.

A dispute has erupted with Lithuania refusing to allow embargoed goods to be shipped to the Kaliningrad enclave via its territory.

Reuters reports that the European Union ambassador to Russia, Markus Ederer, has arrived at the Russian foreign ministry, where he has been summoned over the issue.

Russian news agency RIA Novosti has reported that Crimea, which was annexed by Russia in 2014, has launched integration projects with the occupied areas of Kherson and Zaporizhzhia.

Georgy Muradov, deputy chairman of the council of ministers of Crimea, is quoted as saying that close trade and economic ties have been established, and that they are seeking to improve transport links.

The agency quotes him saying: “The creation of transport routes will ensure the uninterrupted supply of food, medicine and humanitarian aid to the liberated territories. It will also strengthen interregional ties in various fields.”

Russia: ‘western regimes’ and ‘illegitimate sanctions’ to blame for any global grain shortage

The Russian foreign ministry has issued an opinion by the press secretary, Maria Zakharova, about the global grain situation. She cites statistics claiming that grain production and trade levels are higher than previous years, stating that “there will be more grain in the world”. Zakharova goes on to write:

Representatives of the west are using every platform, including the UN, to accuse Russia of reducing the amount of grain available on the market through its actions, allegedly throwing a wrench in grain operations which, according to the West, has sent prices for wheat and other grains up. In reality, though, there’s more grain on the market than in previous years, and trade is up as well.

She claims that the causes of rising prices and shortages are

  • “Systematic errors made by the west when making forecasts for its agricultural policy.”
  • “Global inflation caused by short-sighted financial and monetary mechanisms that the west used during the pandemic.”
  • “The ill-conceived transition of Europe and North America to green energy based on the forced introduction of bio fuel technologies.”
  • “Illegitimate sanctions that have disrupted the established commodity-money chains.”

She goes on to say: “With regard to whether famine is a realistic scenario, experts increasingly foresee a pessimistic outcome. They believe that many nations will be impacted and even more will become destitute. The western regimes that instigate and cause destruction should be blamed for that.”

Yesterday, the European Union’s senior diplomat, Josep Borrell, described the Russian blockade of grain exports from Ukraine as “a real war crime”.



Russia-Ukraine war: Moscow warns of ‘serious negative impact’ for Lithuania over goods blockade – live | World news Source link Russia-Ukraine war: Moscow warns of ‘serious negative impact’ for Lithuania over goods blockade – live | World news

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