Sunday August 7, 2022

G7 leaders focus on helping Ukraine and punishing Russia

Nato is concerned about Vladimir Putin’s close ties with China, the group’s chief has said.

Secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg said Nato does not view China as an adversary but is concerned about its relationship with Russia.

“We don’t regard China as an adversary,” Mr Stoltenberg said at the Nato summit Tuesday. “But we are disappointed by the fact that China has not been able to condemn the Russian invasion of Ukraine, that China is spreading many of the false narratives about Nato, the West, and also that China and Russia are more close now than they have ever been before.”

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It comes as the British army chief said the UK must be prepared to fight against Russia in Ukraine.

General Sir Patrick Sanders said Russia will likely be an even greater threat to European security after the war and the army must be ready to fight to “avert conflict.”

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Russia working on Taliban ties, says Putin in Tajikistan

Mr Putin’s statement Tuesday came in a meeting with President Emomali Rahmon of Tajikistan during the Russian leader’s first trip abroad since the beginning of the Ukraine conflict.

“We are doing everything so that the situation in that country normalizes,” Putin said in Dushanbe, the Tajik capital. “We are attempting to build relations with the political forces that control the situation.”

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Stuti Mishra29 June 2022 06:22

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Editorial: Nato must leave no member state behind in the face of Russian aggression

“The defence secretary, Ben Wallace, doesn’t seem to be the sort of chap to indulge in hype, so his warning about chances of a wider war in Europe, one for which Ukraine is a mere rehearsal, should be heeded.

It is perfectly plausible that, by accident or design, the conflict in Ukraine could spill over into a larger war in eastern Europe, moving Russian forces into the Baltic republics, the eastern Balkans and Poland – and ever closer to Germany. After all, not so long ago, many wise heads and intelligence chiefs believed the Russian army’s manoeuvres were a bluff.”

Stuti Mishra29 June 2022 05:55

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Only a ‘monster’ would attack a mall, says survivor

The mall was nothing extraordinary, but in the middle of a war, it was an escape for those in this Ukrainian city who had decided not to flee. Then it exploded in a Russian airstrike.

In moments on Monday afternoon, a summer hangout became a hellish inferno. Life and death depended on a shopper’s decision whether to heed yet another air raid siren and take shelter.

Survivors and other residents shared images on social media that showed the burned body of a woman, white sneakers still intact, who appeared to have been caught in the blast as she tried to run.

In another video, around the time of impact, a man could be heard calling for his mother.

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Stuti Mishra29 June 2022 05:33

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Putin’s ‘macho’ Ukraine war is ‘toxic masculinity’, says Boris Johnson

Speaking during an interview with German broadcaster ZDF on Tuesday, Mr Johnson said: “If Putin were a woman, I just don’t think he would have started such a macho war.”

“If you want a very good example of toxic masculinity, he’s got that in front of us,” he added, according to the outlet’s translation.

Emily Atkinson has more here:

Stuti Mishra29 June 2022 05:11

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Putin has become ‘a terrorist’, says Zelensky

Ukraine‘s president Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of becoming “a terrorist” leading a “terrorist state” and urged Russia’s expulsion from the United Nations.

“We need to act urgently to do everything to make Russia stop the killing spree,” Mr Zelensky said, warning that otherwise Russia’s “terrorist activity” will spread to other European countries and Asia, singling out the Baltic states, Poland, Moldova and Kazakhstan.

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Stuti Mishra29 June 2022 04:39

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Nato summit to open as leader warns of ‘dangerous’ world

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has sparked a “fundamental shift” in Nato’s approach to defence, and member states will have to boost their military spending in an increasingly unstable world, the leader of the alliance said Tuesday.

Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg spoke as Joe Biden and other Nato leaders began to arrive in Madrid for a summit that will set the course of the alliance for the coming years. He said the meeting would chart a blueprint for the alliance “in a more dangerous and unpredictable world”.

“To be able to defend in a more dangerous world we have to invest more in our defence,” Mr Stoltenberg said. Just nine of Nato’s 30 members meet the organisation’s target of spending 2 per cent of GDP on defence.

Top of the agenda for leaders in meetings Wednesday and Thursday is strengthening defenses against Russia and supporting Ukraine.

Liam James29 June 2022 03:00

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‘We are outgunned and outnumbered by Russia’ – Ukrainian politician

A Ukrainian politician has made a plea for heavy weapons, saying his country is “outgunned and outnumbered” by the Russian attack.

Oleksandr Merezhko said Ukraine had only 10 per centof what they need.

He made the appeal while appearing virtually at an Irish parliament committee meeting on Tuesday, the day after a Russian attack on a packed shopping centre in Kremenchuk caused shock across the world.

“It is crucial because because we are outgunned and outnumbered by Russia.

“Russia is using heavy artillery. First, Russia uses jets heavily shelling bombardments then it uses mortars then tanks and only after that it uses infantry, so the tactics of Russia is to destroy completely everything in front of their troops by using artillery.

“We need to help our soldiers to survive and civilians.”

Liam James29 June 2022 02:00

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UK defence spending to reach 2.3% of GDP this year

Britain’s defence spending is projected to reach 2.3 per cent of its GDP this year due to increased military support for Ukraine amid the Russian invasion, the UK government forecasted.

Nato estimated that Britain will spend 2.12 per cent of GDP in 2022, down from an estimated 2.26 per cent in 2021 but still above the 2 pe cent threshold the alliance asks its members to meet.

Ben Wallace, the UK defence secretary, is reported to be lobbying Boris Johnson to bring defence spending up to 2.5 per cent.

Liam James29 June 2022 01:00

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Jeff Koons sculpture fetches £10m for Ukraine aid

A Jeff Koons sculpture has sold for more than £10m at an auction to raise money for the humanitarian effort in Ukraine.

Ukrainian businessman and philanthropist Victor Pinchuk and his wife Olena donated Koons’ Balloon Monkey to raise money for soldiers and civilians needing prosthetics, medical treatment and rehabilitation following the Russian invasion.

Auctioneers Christie’s said the magenta sculpture now stood as a “monumental symbol of hope and solidarity” with those men, women and children from the war-torn country.

It was sold as part of the auction house’s 20th/21st Century: London evening sale – just exceeding its upper estimate of £10m.

For the last two weeks, Balloon Monkey has been on public display in London’s St James’s Square.

<img src="https://static.independent.co.uk/2022/06/28/22/SEI110035726.jpg?quality=75&width=982&height=726&auto=webp" srcset="https://static.independent.co.uk/2022/06/28/22/SEI110035726.jpg?quality=75&width=640&auto=webp&crop=982:726,smart 640w" alt="

Balloon monkey in St James’s Square last fortnight

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Balloon monkey in St James’s Square last fortnight

(AFP/Getty)

Liam James29 June 2022 00:11

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Russia’s Lavrov says Western arms supplies dragging out conflict

Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday the more western countries send weapons to Ukraine the longer the conflict will last.

Russia has repeatedly blamed the west for prolonging the conflict, which Moscow calls a “special military operation”, and has targeted missile strikes against arms depots storing weapons provided to Kyiv by the United States and Europe.

Speaking at a news conference during a visit to Turkmenistan, Lavrov said Russia did not target a shopping centre in the Ukrainian city of Kremenchuk on Monday, where at least 18 people died following a Russian strike.

Echoing a statement issued by Russia’s defence ministry earlier on Tuesday, Lavrov told reporters the mall was empty at the time a fire occurred as a result of Russia hitting an arms depot storing western weapons that was next to the shopping centre.

Thomas Kingsley28 June 2022 23:30

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