Friday May 13, 2022

Wladimir Klitschko calls Bucha killings ‘genocide of Ukrainian population’

A Russian soldier charged with killing an elderly civilian in Ukraine is set to face a Kyiv court on Friday in the first war crimes trial since Moscow launched its brutal invasion in February.

Sergeant Vadim Shyshimarin, 21, is accused of shooting the unarmed 62-year-old Ukrainian man while he was riding his bike in the northeastern village of Chupakhivka in the Sumy Oblast.

According to Ukrainian law, he could face up to life in prison.

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“I was ordered to shoot,” the sergeant said of the incident, adding: “I shot one (round) at him. He falls. And we kept on going.”

Victor Ovsyanikov, defending, has acknowledged that the case against the alleged killer is strong, but said the final decision over what evidence to allow is yet to be made by the court.

Elsewhere, former Finnish foreign minister Erkki Tuomioja has warned that Kremlin will view Finland as “potential enemies”.

It comes as Finland’s leaders spoke in favour of joining the Nato alliance in order to strenthen their country’s security and defence.

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UK sanctions Putin’s ‘shady’ friends and family including alleged mistress

Britain has announced more Russian sanctions, with President Vladimir Putin’s ex-wife, family members and inner circle hit in the latest tranche of measures designed to punish Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine, Alastair Jamieson reports.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 11:38

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UK says new sanctions hit Putin’s network including ex-wife and cousins

Britain’s latest round of sanctions are set to target Russian President Vladimir Putin’s financial network, including his ex-wife and cousins.

“We will keep going with sanctions on all those aiding and abetting Putin’s aggression until Ukraine prevails.”

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 11:23

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Relatives of Mariupol steel mill fighters plead for help: ‘They’re abandoning our soldiers’

Demonstrators marched across central Kyiv holding banners and shouting slogans such as “save defenders of Mariupol, save Azovstal”, “glory to the heroes of Mariupol”, and “save the military of Azovstal”.

My colleague, Sravasti Dasgupta, reports:

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 11:09

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Kremlin: report of possible gas cuts for Finland ‘most likely a hoax’

A report in a Finnish newspaper that Russia may cut gas supplies to Finland as soon as Friday seems to be fake, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said.

“Most likely, this is another newspaper hoax,” he told a conference call, adding that Gazprom remained a reliable gas supplier.

Newspaper Iltalehti reported on Thursday, citing unnamed sources, that Finnish politicians had been warned that Russia could halt gas supplies to its neighbour on Friday.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 10:56

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‘Russia will see us as potential enemies,’ Finland’s former foreign minister says

Former Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja has warned that Kremlin will view Finland as “potential enemies”.

Mr Tuomioja adding that Russia will respond by increasing their “military presence on the border” but they do not expect an attack.

Watch the full clip on Sky News here:

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 10:43

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Ukraine: Russian soldier to go on first war crimes trial

A Russian soldier charged with killing an elderly civilian in Ukraine is set to face a Kyiv court on Friday in the first war crimes trial since Moscow launched its brutal invasion in February.

My colleague Emily Atkinson reports:

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 10:27

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Ukraine will fight for Snake Island in Black sea ‘as long as is needed’

Ukraine will fight for the remote Zmiinyi Island (Snake Island) in the Black Sea “for as long as is needed”, the head of Ukrainian military intelligence said on Friday.

“Whoever controls the island can at any time block the movement of civilian ships in all directions to the south of Ukraine,” Kyrylo Budanov said in televised comments.

Renewed fighting around Snake Island in recent days may become a battle for control of the western Black Sea coast, according to some defence officials, as Russian forces struggle to make headway in Ukraine‘s north and east.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 10:15

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G7 unity ‘vital’ to protect ‘freedom and democracy,’ Truss says

Foreign secretary Liz Truss has said G7 unity has been “vital” during the Ukraine war crisis “to protect freedom and democracy” and says the alliance will continue to work together.

Watch the full clip here:

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 10:00

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EU pledges $520 million to Ukraine

The European Union is giving Ukraine another 500 million euros ($520 million) to buy heavy weapons to fend off the Russian invasion, the bloc’s foreign affairs chief said Friday at a gathering in Germany of top diplomats from the Group of Seven wealthy nations.

Josep Borrell, the EU’s high representative for foreign policy, said he was also hopeful of getting the bloc’s member nations to agree to an oil embargo against Russia soon, despite misgivings from some countries.

The funds would be allocated for the purchase of heavy weapons and take the EU’s total financial support for Ukraine to 2 billion euros ($2.1 billion), he added.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 09:45

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Russian assaults on eastern Ukraine villages mostly unsuccessful, Ukraine military says

Ukraine‘s military have said that Russian forces staged assaults on multiple villages in eastern Ukraine as they try to expand control there, but not all were successful.

In its daily operational note on Friday, the general staff of Ukraine‘s armed forces said Russia‘s military continued to launch artillery and air strikes on the embattled port of Mariupol, focusing on blocking Ukrainian fighters at their last holdout at the Azovstal steelworks.

In the Russian campaign in the east, villages were targeted near Donetsk, Lyman, Bakhmut and Kurakhiv, the Ukrainian military said.

It said Russian forces also fired artillery on Ukrainian troops in the direction of Novopavlovsk and Zaporizhzhia, a major industrial city that has become a haven for refugees fleeing Mariupol.

The Ukrainian military said Russian forces are transferring additional artillery units to border areas near Ukraine‘s northern Chernihiv region, where deadly Russian strikes hit a school and dormitory Thursday.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain13 May 2022 09:30

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