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Russia-Ukraine war: Russian maps appear to show rapid withdrawals in east and south; US promises more weapons to Kyiv – live

The Guardian
The Guardian
 2022-10-04

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9.19pm BST

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy thanked US president Joe Biden for his “continued defence and financial support” in a phone call today, AFP reports.

Zelenskiy said in a statement that the two sides discussed “additional sanctions (and) the situation on the battlefield”. The White House announced earlier today that it would be providing $625m (£544m) in new military aid, which would include High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (Himars) launchers. Zelenskiy wrote:


I am grateful to the President of the United States and the entire American people for the continued defence and financial support … I was pleased to hear the words of President Biden that our servicemen inspire the whole world, our people inspire the whole world.”

Ukraine already has access to 16 of the Himars systems, AFP noted, adding that the US state department has confirmed that the US has now sent more than $16.8 billion in aid since the invasion began.

9.07pm BST

Zelenskiy announces military progress and reportedly liberated regions in Ukraine

Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, announced that dozens of regions in Ukraine have been liberated from Russian occupation, seemingly confirming information from Russia’s maps that show Russia withdrawing from eastern and western Ukraine.

During an address today, Zelenskiy said the country’s armed forces were making progress against Russia in the southern part of the country.

“Today we have good news from the front line. First: the Ukrainian army is making quite fast and powerful progress in the south of our country as part of the current defence operation,” said Zelenskiy.

The president also announced that dozens of regions have been reportedly released from Russian occupation: “Dozens of settlements have already been exempted from the Russian pseudo-referendum this week alone,” he said.

He added: “This [has happened] in Kherson region, Kharkiv region, Luhansk region and Donetsk region … In particular, according to the military reports from the Kherson region: the settlements of Lyubimivka, Khreshchenivka, Zolota Balka, Bilyaivka, Ukrainka, Velyka and Mala Oleksandrivka, and Davidiv Brid were liberated from the occupier and stabilised.”

Zelenskiy noted that the list of released territories is not complete, vowing to continue fighting against Russian forces: “And this is far from a complete list. Our soldiers do not stop. And it’s only a matter of time before we expel the occupier from all of our land.”

Updated at 9.32pm BST

8.48pm BST

The UN rights office has warned that Russia’s claimed annexation of Ukrainian territory could worsen human rights violations in the area, reported AFP:

Russia’s claimed annexation of Ukraine territory will only exacerbate human rights violations, the UN rights office said Tuesday as it outlined the “unspeakable suffering and devastation” inflicted on Ukrainians.

Christian Salazar Volkmann, presenting a report on rights in Ukraine to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, said UN experts had documented “a range of violations of the rights to life, liberty and security”.

“The Russian Federation’s wide-scale armed attack has resulted in a dire human rights situation across Ukraine,” the UN rights office’s field operations chief said.

“The people in Ukraine have experienced unspeakable suffering and devastation.”

He said the office’s Human Rights Monitoring Mission, which has been present in Ukraine since 2014, had documented 6,114 civilians killed since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24, stressing though that “the real figures are likely considerably higher.”

8.28pm BST

The US announced earlier today that it would give Ukraine an additional $625m (£544m) in new security assistance.

Here’s a more specific breakdown of what the package will entail:

Updated at 8.51pm BST

8.05pm BST

The US has urged Russia to provide a counter-offer to its attempts to broker the release of WNBA star Brittney Griner, reported Reuters, calling Griner’s upcoming court date to appeal her sentence “a sham”.

“We are aware of Russia’s announcement that Brittney Griner will be forced to undergo another sham judicial proceeding. She should be released immediately,” said the White House press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre, during a briefing today, reported AFP.

The White house said today that it has offered to swap Viktor Bout, the jailed arms dealer, for Griner and Paul Whelan, a former US Marine who has been incarcerated in Russia since 2018.

Jean-Pierre told reporters that the US has yet to receive a serious response from Russia. “We need to see a serious counter-offer,” said Jean-Pierre.

Griner has been incarcerated in Russia since February and was sentenced to nine years in Russian prison.

The court date to appeal her sentence is set for 25 October.

Updated at 8.51pm BST

7.45pm BST

The United States said today that there is no indication Russia is preparing to use nuclear weapons, Reuters reported, despite posturing from Vladimir Putin.

White House press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre, said during a briefing that despite “nuclear saber rattling”, there are no signs that the Russia is planning to actually use such weapons.

“We take any nuclear weapons or nuclear saber rattling very seriously here, but I do want to say … that we have not seen any reason to adjust our own strategic nuclear posture, nor do we have any indication that Russia is preparing to imminently use nuclear weapons,” Jean-Pierre said.

Putin has escalated the more than seven month war in Ukraine with a military mobilisation and warnings of nuclear weapons use.

Updated at 7.57pm BST

7.23pm BST

Ukraine’s economy is set to contract by 35%, the World Bank reported on Tuesday, as the country deals with Russia’s ongoing invasion.

The international financial institution described Ukraine’s economy as “scarred by the destruction of productive capacity, damage to agricultural land, and reduced labor supply” in an economic update for Europe and Central Asia, reported AFP.

The World Bank also estimated that upwards of 14 million people have been displaced by the war, with recovery and rebuilding efforts billed at $349bn, 1.5 times the size of Ukraine’s pre-war economy.

The US gave Ukraine an additional $12.3bn in aid last week to help the war-torn country in its fight against Russia, AFP further reported.

Updated at 8.49pm BST

7.01pm BST

Summary

Here is what’s happened so far today with the ongoing conflict in Ukraine:

  • The US president, Joe Biden, told the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, that Washington will provide Kyiv with $625m (£544m) in new security assistance, including High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (Himars) launchers, the White House said.

  • Russian defence ministry maps appear to show rapid withdrawals of Russian invasion forces from areas in eastern and southern Ukraine where they have been under severe pressure from a Ukrainian counteroffensive.

  • Russia is at risk of losing control of the strategic towns critical to retaining the city of Kherson and eventually Crimea, western officials said, but they warned the fighting along the Dnipro River “will not be an easy rush into constrained territory”.

  • The European Union has summoned Russia’s envoy to condemn and reject Moscow’s “illegal annexation” of the Donetsk, Kherson, Luhansk and Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine , the EU diplomatic service has said.

  • Vladimir Putin is “likely” to sign laws to incorporate four Ukrainian territories into Russia during the course of the day , according to the Kremlin spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov.

More to come!

6.40pm BST

Giorgia Meloni, set to become Italy’s next prime minister, promised “her full support” for Ukraine on Tuesday in a phone call with the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, her Brothers of Italy party said.

Reuters reports:

In one of her first calls with a foreign leader since winning an election last week, Meloni “underlined her commitment to every diplomatic effort useful for ending the conflict” with Russia, the party statement said.

It added that Zelenskiy had invited her to visit Kyiv as soon as possible and had expressed his gratitude for the arms that Italy had sent Ukraine following the Russian invasion.

Meloni has been one of the few Italian political leaders to wholeheartedly endorse outgoing prime minister Mario Draghi’s decision to ship weapons to Ukraine, even though she was in opposition to his government.

By contrast, Meloni’s two political allies, the League and Forza Italia, which were both in Draghi’s coalition, have been much more ambivalent, reflecting their historically close ties with the Russian president, Vladimir Putin.

Underscoring the depth of those ties, Forza Italia leader Silvio Berlusconi said last month that Putin had been “pushed” into invading Ukraine and had wanted to put “decent people” in charge in Kyiv.

Updated at 6.50pm BST

6.35pm BST

Ukraine has continued to liberate territory in the east and the south , Volodymyr Zelenskiy has said, as Russian defence ministry maps appeared to show rapid withdrawals of its invasion forces, reports Guardian correspondent Isobel Koshiw in Kyiv.

The ministry’s daily video briefing made no mention of any pullbacks, but on maps used to show the location of purported Russian strikes, the shaded area designating Russian military control was much smaller than the day before.

The maps included in Tuesday’s daily military briefing showed that Russian forces were no longer in control of the village of Dudchany on the west bank of the Dnieper River, where Ukraine’s forces have been pushing to reclaim territory captured at the start of Moscow’s offensive.

In the north-eastern Kharkiv region, where Kyiv’s run of battlefield victories began in early September, Russian defence ministry maps showed that its forces have left positions on the west bank of the Oskil River.

Western officials said at a briefing on Tuesday that Ukraine was currently dictating the operational tempo on the battlefield and doubted whether Russia had the ambition or ability to return to the offensive.

Related: Ukraine continues to liberate territory in east and south, says Zelenskiy

Updated at 6.56pm BST

6.00pm BST

US promises additional weapons to Ukraine

The US president, Joe Biden, told the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, that Washington will provide Kyiv with $625m (£544m) in new security assistance, including High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (Himars) launchers, the White House said.

Reuters reports:

Biden was joined in the call by Vice-President Kamala Harris, the White House said in a statement. The president underscored that Washington will never recognise Russian annexation of Ukrainian territory, it added.

Biden “pledged to continue supporting Ukraine as it defends itself from Russian aggression for as long as it takes”, the statement said.

Updated at 6.10pm BST

5.07pm BST

The Associated Press has analysis on what Russia’s retreat from a key Ukrainian city over the weekend means:

Frustration with the battlefield setbacks has long been expressed in social media blogs run by nationalist pundits and pro-Kremlin analysts, and the volume grew after Ukraine’s counteroffensive last month around Kharkiv in the north-east. But it is now spilling out on state TV broadcasts and in the pages of government-backed newspapers.

The less conciliatory tone from state-run media comes as President Vladimir Putin faces widespread Russian discontent about his partial mobilisation of reservists and as government officials struggle to explain plans to annex Ukrainian regions at the same time they are being retaken by Kyiv’s forces.

“The Russian defeat in Kharkiv [region ] and Lyman, combined with the Kremlin’s failure to conduct partial mobilisation effectively and fairly are fundamentally changing the Russian information space,” Washington-based Institute for the Study of War said in a report.

The move paves the way for Ukrainian troops to potentially push even further into land that Moscow illegally claims as its own. Ukrainian forces scored more gains in their counteroffensive across at least two fronts on Monday, advancing in the very areas Russia moved to absorb.

Updated at 5.51pm BST

4.58pm BST

Two women in Russia-annexed Crimea, including Miss Crimea, have been found guilty of discrediting the Russian army by singing a patriotic Ukrainian song in a video posted on social media, local authorities have said.

Olga Valeyeva, who won the Miss Crimea 2022 beauty pageant, and an unnamed friend sang the popular Ukrainian Chervona Kalyna song on a balcony.

A video of the women singing was posted on Instagram stories, which auto-delete after 24 hours.

Crimean police said Valeyeva was fined 40,000 roubles (£590), while her friend was given a 10-day prison sentence.

Related: Miss Crimea fined for singing patriotic Ukrainian song

Updated at 5.48pm BST

4.55pm BST

Russian maps appear to show rapid withdrawals in eastern and southern Ukraine

Russian defence ministry maps appear to show rapid withdrawals of Russian invasion forces from areas in eastern and southern Ukraine where they have been under severe pressure from a Ukrainian counteroffensive.

Reuters reports:

The ministry’s daily video briefing made no mention of any pullbacks, but on maps used to show the location of purported Russian strikes, the shaded area designating Russian military control was much smaller than the day before.

In northeast Ukraine, where Russia suffered a rout last month, its forces along a frontline running some 70 km southward from Kupiansk along the River Oskil appeared to have retreated some 20 km to the east, as far as the border of Luhansk province.

This would mean they had vacated the last remnants of Ukraine’s Kharkiv province - where Russia for several months maintained an occupation administration - but for a small patch between the town of Dvorichna and the Russian border.

In southern Ukraine’s Kherson province, Russia’s line of control on the right bank of the Dnipro river had shifted 25 km southward on the map, to a line running westward from the riverside town of Dudchany.

Both areas are battlefields where Ukraine has been reporting advances, albeit without giving full details.

It would not be the first time that Moscow had acknowledged a withdrawal so obliquely. On 11 September, a map presented by the defence ministry showed that Russian forces had abandoned most of the parts of Kharkiv that they had controlled, as far east as the Oskil, after a lightning Ukrainian offensive.

Updated at 4.55pm BST

4.07pm BST

The Guardian’s legal affairs correspondent, Haroon Siddique, reports on the United Nations inquiry into whether war crimes were committed in Ukraine:

About 2,000 videos, photographs and audio files of alleged war crimes captured through an app designed to create verifiable evidence have been submitted to the United Nations mandated international commission of inquiry (UN COI) on Ukraine in relation to Russia’s invasion of the northern city of Chernihiv and surrounding villages.

They came from the eyeWitness to Atrocities app, which enables people to take footage with the time, date and location recorded. They are then stored encrypted so they cannot be edited.

Wendy Betts, the director of the UK-based charity eyeWitness to Atrocities, said:

Civilian homes, schools, community spaces and food supplies in and around Chernihiv were devastated during Russia’s siege. Given the veracity and quality of the footage, there are reasonable grounds to believe that the incidents included in this submission constitute at least gross violations of human rights and, pending further analysis, violations of international humanitarian law.

The submission concerns alleged violations committed between late February and late March 2022.

It covers four key areas of destruction believed to have been perpetrated: residential neighbourhoods, schools and a children’s library, cultural heritage sites and key supermarkets. Several hundred people are believed to have died in the siege of Chernihiv, before Russians left the city.

Dr Mark Ellis, the International Bar Association’s executive director and the app’s creator, said:

Footage from Ukraine has already been securely delivered by eyeWitness to relevant accountability mechanisms, including the Ukrainian authorities and Europol, and now the United Nations mandated COI as reliable evidence of potential war crimes and other incidents. The international order is at stake and so is the need to ensure that those accused of committing the most heinous crimes are brought to justice.

More than 20,000 items relating to Ukraine have been submitted through the app since the start of Russia’s invasion.

Updated at 4.50pm BST

3.45pm BST

Exhausted, cold and hungry, the people of liberated Lyman are not yet convinced war has moved on

Peter Beaumont, who is reporting from Ukraine for the Guardian, has just got back from newly liberated Lyman today and shared his impressions in a phone call:

It’s an important victory because Lyman is a big strategic junction. The Ukrainians are looking at it as the gate into liberating occupied Luhansk and further down. It’s now towards one edge of the occupied eastern area.

It’s quiet there, the fighting has moved a long way as the Ukrainians continue their offensive. We saw the sheer level of destruction in the city. It’s quite a long approach now because one of the main bridges is blown, even though you would normally get there quickly from Sloviansk. It’s a circuitous route along roads that were formerly the Russian frontlines.

You’re going through this rolling countryside, with woods and forests, but you can see where shells have snapped trees in half – and missiles have knocked down several dozen trees. When you get into the town, you can see there is a lot of destruction: the house of culture is gutted, there isn’t an apartment that isn’t damaged, houses have been flattened.

It’s a huge railway town, and on the bigger junctions you find where the Russian dugouts were. Many have been hit by different kinds of munitions before soldiers fled towards Crimea. It used to be a busy place, a town of 30,000 where most people worked for the railways, but there are only estimated to be 1,000 people left. There’s no electricity, no gas, a lot of the apartment houses have had all their windows blown out, and it’s beginning to get chilly now.

Quite a common sight as you’re wandering around is people – mainly the elderly residents stayed – cooking food out on the street on open fires, which is all they can do at the moment. We managed to pop into a little supermarket, and most shelves were empty. The bakery got hit so there’s no bread. During the occupation, it sounds like grocery supplies weren’t coming through much anyway because most Russians insisted on bribes.

Ukrainian troops are very much in evidence now, the national police are back, but it’s a ghost town. There’s quite a heavy military presence around areas where they’re going to try to run the south from. It’s a long way from being normal and it’s really been destroyed.

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A woman cooks on the street in Lyman. Photograph: Peter Beaumont/The Guardian

One older gentleman I spoke to had only returned to the town 18 days before the battle started. There’s a story I’ve heard in other parts of Ukraine, that pensioners can’t really afford rents in the safer cities and they run out of money and end up going back. Like many, he didn’t see much of battle because he was hiding in his basement, and only came out when it started getting quieter and saw Ukrainian flags had been put up.

We weren’t there when the town was liberated but I got the sense from quite a lot of people who are still there that they’re just exhausted, cold, hungry, and still not convinced the war has gone away. Even though this battle has been won, it’s only moved down the road essentially so you can still hear loud booms coming over the countryside.

The other issue about the aftermath is it’s lousy with mines. You cannot go off the road, there are booby traps. All the solders we’ve spoken to said everywhere not on a path or cleared road is a mine risk and there are an awful lot of mines there, especially in the forests where the Russian positions were.

Ukrainians have been quite efficient about getting food supplies in but getting it ready for winter, turning gas and electricity on in a deserted town with so much damage is a big job, and the war hasn’t gone away yet.

Interactive

Updated at 5.00pm BST

2.43pm BST

European Union finance ministers agreed today to integrate the EU’s support payments to Ukraine into its 2023 budget to make payments more structured and predictable, the European Commission vice -president, Valdis Dombrovskis , said.

Speaking to journalists after a meeting of the ministers, Dombrovskis admitted this year’s EU payments to Ukraine were hardly regular – a point of concern for Kyiv, which needs to pay the salaries public workers and pensions.

The EU agreed to support Ukraine with €9bn (£7.85bn) in May, but only made the first disbursement of €1bn in July. Reuters reported Dombrovskis said the next tranche of €5bn would be made by mid-October and the remaining €3bn in two instalments in November and December.

Updated at 3.18pm BST

2.34pm BST

Here are some of the recent images we have been sent over the newswires from Kharkiv in Ukraine.

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Firefighters put out a fire on the ruins of a destroyed electrical products plant in Kharkiv. Photograph: Sergey Bobok/AFP/Getty Images
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A woman pets a cat in the ruins of a damaged house in Dalin village in Kharkiv. Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
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An electrical transformer substation destroyed by Russian missile strikes on the outskirts of Kharkiv. Photograph: Sergey Bobok/AFP/Getty Images
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A monument dedicated to the memory of Soviet Union soldiers in the Great Patriotic War is newly painted in the colours of the Ukrainian flag in Izium. Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Updated at 2.41pm BST

2.13pm BST

Russia at risk of losing control of towns critical to retaining Kherson city and Crimea, say western officials

The Guardian’s diplomatic editor Patrick Wintour reports:

Russia is at risk of losing control of the strategic towns critical to retaining the city of Kherson and eventually Crimea, western officials said, but they warned the fighting along the Dnipro River “will not be an easy rush into constrained territory”.

They warned the situation in the south “could become increasingly messy with potentially a more desperate Russian force with their backs to the river Dnipro”, adding the Russian leadership politically will be unable to sanction a retreat from Kherson.

Asked if Russia was preparing to act on its repeated threat to use tactical nuclear weapons, the official insisted they had seen no indicators or actions by Russia that were out of the norm. They pointed out that Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov had slapped down the calls from Chechen leaders to use such weapons, saying it was not right to resort to emotions.

Giving one of its most upbeat assessments of the military balance, the western officials said Ukraine was dictating the operational tempo at the moment and doubted whether Russia any longer had any ambition or ability to return to the offensive. “Ukrainian commanders in the south and the east are creating problems for the Russian chain of command faster than the Russians can effectively respond”.

They also doubted the capacity of the 300,000 Russian conscripts to tip the military balance, pointing to the importance of warm weather, clothing and logistics. “Currently you’ve seen videos of Russian recruits lighting fires in fields at minus 5C at night – that is not going to be a situation where you have high morale over the winter.”

Western officials highlighted the progress being made by Ukrainian forces in the south along the Dnipro River, with the start of a potentially fatal pocket being created containing 20,000 Russian troops trapped on the western side of river. But the officials warned as Ukrainian forces pushed south along the river they could potentially be at risk from artillery fire by Russian forces on the other side of the river. “This won’t be an easy rush through unconstrained territory. We think it unlikely the Russian leadership would sanction a full pullout from Kherson for political reasons.

The officials said the town of Nova Kakhovka, about 50km from the most advanced Ukrainian troops, was “a critical challenge to the viability of the Russian troops in Kherson”. The town has a major road bridge, power station and dam, as well as a canal taking fresh water to Crimea, so is seen by the western military officials as central to a nexus of communications. “If you can control that it allows you a much greater military advantage, putting areas of the Kherson and Crimea area at risk”.

The western officials said Russia’s headlong weekend retreat on the northern front in Lyman occurred despite orders to defend and remain.

He said the Russian army “suffered high casualties from artillery fire as they attempted to leave the town to the east. As part of the supposedly newly annexed Donbas, relinquishing these areas is exactly what the Kremlin didn’t want to happen”.

Updated at 3.52pm BST

1.25pm BST

The British government has said it ha s imposed a travel ban and an asset freeze on Sergei Yeliseyev as part of its broader sanctions against Russia.

The government said Yeliseyev was deputy prime minister of Kaliningrad and was involved in “destabilising Ukraine or undermining or threatening the territorial integrity, sovereignty or independence of Ukraine”.

Updated at 1.31pm BST

1.06pm BST

Japan has ordered a Russian consul in Sapporo to leave the country by 10 October in retaliation for the expulsion of a Japanese consul in Vladivostok last month, the foreign ministry has said.

Reuters reports:

Japan’s decision comes after Russia’s FSB security agency said in September that it had detained the Japanese consul for suspected espionage and ordered him to leave the country.

The vice foreign minister Takeo Mori summoned the Russian ambassador, Mikhail Galuzin, and informed him of Japan’s decision. The country declared the Russian consul in Sapporo “persona non grata” and demanded that the consul leave Japan within six days.

Galuzin said:

It is obvious that this latest step by the Japanese side can only lead to further deterioration of bilateral relations, which have already degraded recently as a result of Tokyo’s destructive policy.

Updated at 1.21pm BST

12.52pm BST

The Kremlin has praised the Tesla boss, Elon Musk, for suggesting a possible peace deal to end the war in Ukraine , after Kyiv rebuked him for proposing terms it viewed as rewarding Russia.

The Kremlin spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, told reporters in a conference call:

It is very positive that somebody like Elon Musk is looking for a peaceful way out of this situation.

Compared to many professional diplomats, Musk is still searching for ways to achieve peace. And achieving peace without fulfilling Russia’s conditions is absolutely impossible.

In a Twitter poll posted on Monday, the Tesla boss proposed Ukraine permanently cede Crimea to Russia, that new referendums be held under UN auspices to determine the fate of Russian-controlled territory, and that Ukraine agree to neutrality.

Kyiv says it will never agree to cede land taken by force, and lawful referendums cannot be held in occupied territory where many people have been killed or driven out.

The Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, responded to Musk’s proposal with his own Twitter poll asking:

As of 10.30am GMT on Tuesday, Musk’s original poll had garnered more than 2.5 million votes, with about 60% opposed to the plan.

Peskov said on Tuesday that “bots” – phoney Twitter accounts – were “actively participating in the voting”, but provided no evidence.

Moscow had always been open to a negotiated end to the conflict, Peskov added. He criticised a new Ukrainian decree that says Kyiv will not negotiate directly with Putin.

Updated at 1.04pm BST

12.09pm BST

EU summons Russian ambassador to condemn annexations in Ukraine

The European Union has summoned Russia’s envoy to condemn and reject Moscow’s “illegal annexation” of the Donetsk, Kherson, Luhansk and Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine, the EU diplomatic service has said.

Reuters reports:

Russia declared the annexations on Friday after holding what it called referendums in occupied areas of Ukraine. Western governments and Kyiv said the votes breached international law and were coercive and non-representative.

The EU said it urged Moscow to reverse its “unlawful act” and unconditionally withdraw all its troops from the entire territory of Ukraine during Monday’s meeting with Russia’s charge d’affaires, Kirill Logvinov.

The EU said in a statement:

The EU does not, and will never, recognise this illegal annexation by Russia. These decisions by Russia are null and void and cannot produce any legal effect whatsoever.

Updated at 12.23pm BST

12.06pm BST

Reuters has interviewed Russian men who fled the country – often via circuitous routes – after they were called up for military service as the country attempts to boost its presence in Ukraine.

Reuters reports:

Timofey and Andrey, two brothers from Moscow, tried to book flights out of the country. But by the time they had logged on, prices had already shot up so fast that they couldn’t afford the last remaining tickets out.

Instead, they jumped in the car. Their father drove them through the night about 700km (450 miles) to Minsk in neighbouring Belarus. There, they got a flight the next morning to Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan.

“We thought we might have to cross the border illegally through the forests if they didn’t let us out of Russia,” said Andrey, 26, speaking from Tashkent.

Kirill Ponomarev, a 24-year-old journalist from Voronezh close to Ukraine, set out to reach Yerevan in Armenia. It took him a week on a journey by car, train and plane spanning more than 10,000km (6,000 miles).

Even before Putin made his announcement, Ponomarev was planning to leave: he already had a ticket booked for Yerevan but was not due to fly for another six days.

The day after Putin’s speech, Ponomarev decided it was too risky to wait. The regional governor signed a decree banning reservists from leaving the province. Ponomarev took barely an hour to pack before hopping in a car for 600km (370-mile) drive to Volgograd, close to the border with Kazakhstan.

There, he found a cheap ticket on a long-distance train bound for Tajikistan, which typically carries Central Asian migrant workers to and from Russia.

“My sense was that 90% of my carriage were Russian men of military age. Everyone looked at each other in silence, but we all understood what was going on,” he said.

Tashkent and Yerevan, like other capitals of former Soviet states that let in Russians without visas, have become havens, especially for members of the Russian urban middle classes who were able to move quickly and had resources to escape.

“We booked a room in a hostel for two weeks – and virtually everyone here is Russian,” said Timofey, one of the Moscow brothers in Tashkent. “If you walk around the city, you see a lot of Russians, a lot of IT workers, sitting and working in cafes.”

Uzbekistan allows Russians to stay without a visa for 90 days, and has said it will not deport Russians who come to avoid conscription. Andrey and Timofey plan to move on to Turkey where Russians can obtain residency permits relatively easily.

“I don’t expect to return to Russia in the next six months or a year,” Andrey said.

Updated at 12.39pm BST

11.58am BST

The UK will extend the deployment of an air defence system in Poland , the British defence secretary, Ben Wallace, has said.

During a visit to the southern Polish city of Zamość, Wallace told reporters:

I am pleased to announce that we will extend the current posting of our medium air defence ... for another period to make sure that as Poland helps continue that logistical support to Ukraine it is safe in doing so.

Updated at 12.40pm BST

11.43am BST

There are no indications of any unusual activity surrounding Moscow’s nuclear arsenal following the latest nuclear threats by Vladimir Putin , a western official said on Tuesday.

The official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told reporters:

We have not seen any indicators or activities that we would think are out of the norm. We have not seen activity which is beyond the usual for the sorts of activities that are conducted by those elements of the Russians’ strategic forces.

Updated at 12.40pm BST

11.27am BST

Vladimir Putin and Mali’s interim president, Assimi Goïta, have reaffirmed their commitment to strengthening security cooperation .

According to a Kremlin readout of a phone call between the two reported by Reuters, Russia will help root out “terrorist groups” in Mali.

Updated at 11.33am BST

11.16am BST

Putin expected to sign laws annexing four Ukrainian territories on Tuesday

Vladimir Putin is “likely” to sign laws to incorporate four Ukrainian territories into Russia during the course of the day , according to the Kremlin spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov.

Speaking to reporters, Peskov said the “special military operation” in Ukraine would not end if Kyiv ruled out talks, adding that it “takes two sides to negotiate”.

He said:

We will either wait for the current president to change his position or wait for the next president to change his position in the interests of the Ukrainian people.

The Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, signed a decree on Tuesday formally declaring any talks between Kyiv and Putin “impossible”, but left the door open to talks with Russia.

Earlier, the upper house of the Russian parliament unanimously ratified legislation to annex the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions, representing around 18% of Ukraine’s internationally-recognised territory, following a similar vote in the lower house on Monday.

Asked about media reports that Russia was preparing to demonstrate its willingness to use nuclear weapons in its conflict with Ukraine, Peskov said Russia did not want to take part in what he cast as Western exercises in “nuclear rhetoric”.

The Times newspaper reported on Monday that the Nato military alliance had warned members that Putin was set to hold a nuclear test on Ukraine’s borders.

In a visit to Warsaw on Tuesday, the German foreign minister, Annalena Baerbock, said that while Russia’s nuclear threats must be taken seriously, the international community won’t be daunted by them.

It’s not the first time Putin has resorted to such threats, they are irresponsible and we must take them seriously.

But it’s also an attempt to blackmail us, as we know from the more than past 200 days of this brutal war of aggression.

Updated at 11.34am BST

11.12am BST

More than 200,000 people have been called up for military service since Russia announced a “partial mobilisation” two weeks ago, according to the Russian defence minister, Sergei Shoigu.

The RIA Novosti news agency reported that Shoigu said Russia was aiming to recruit an additional 300,000 military personnel as part of the initiative.

Rachel Hall here taking over the blog for the next few hours. If there’s anything we’ve missed, do get in touch .

Updated at 11.35am BST

11.02am BST

Summary of the day so far …

  • The upper house of Russia’s parliament has voted to approve the incorporation of four occupied Ukrainian regions into Russia, as Moscow sets about formally annexing territory it seized from Kyiv since staging its latest invasion of Ukraine in February. In a session on Tuesday, the Federation Council unanimously ratified legislation to annex the Donetsk , Luhansk , Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine, following a similar vote in the state Duma, Russia’s lower house, yesterday. No lawmakers in the lower house voted against the bill either.

  • Volodymyr Zelenskiy has signed a decree formally declaring the prospect of any Ukrainian talks with Vladimir Putin “impossible”. The decree formalised comments made by Zelenskiy on Friday after the Russian president proclaimed the four occupied regions of Ukraine were to become part of Russia.

  • Russia, however, no longer has full control of any of the four provinces it claims to annex , after Ukrainian troops reportedly advanced dozens of kilometres in Kherson province. The Russian military has acknowledged that Kyiv’s forces had broken through in the Kherson region. It said the Ukrainian army and its “superior tank units” had managed to “penetrate the depths of our defence” around the villages of Zoltaya Balka and Alexsandrovka.

  • Russia’s retreat from Lyman has sparked vociferous criticism of the handling of the war on Russian state television. Vladimir Solovyov , host of a primetime talkshow on state TV channel Russia 1 and one of the Kremlin’s biggest cheerleaders, said on air on Sunday. “We need to pull it together, make unpopular, but necessary decisions and act.”

  • Lyman’s recapture by Ukrainian troops is Russia’s largest battlefield loss since Ukraine’s lightning counteroffensive in the north-eastern Kharkiv region in September.

  • Russias’s ministry of defence spokesperson, Igor Konashenkov, said Russian troops had occupied what he called a “pre-prepared defensive line”. His comments are an admission that Ukraine’s southern counter-offensive is dramatically gaining pace, two months after it began.

  • The self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) has claimed that in the last 24 hours two people were injured on the territory it occupies, and 13 houses and 12 civil infrastructure were damaged by fire from the Ukrainian armed forces.

  • A Russian court has fined the streaming service Twitch 4m roubles (£60,000/$68,000) for failing to remove an interview with a Ukrainian political figure. The court said the interview violated Russian laws on the spreading of fake information.

  • North Korea has become the only UN member state apart from Russia to recognise the “results” of the Moscow-backed “referendums” in the occupied areas of Ukraine.

  • Diplomatic relations between Russia and Japan continue to deteriorate. Japanese foreign minister Yoshimasa Hayashi has ordered a Russian consul in Sapporo to leave Japan by 10 October.

  • Elon Musk has prompted an online row with Zelenskiy after he asked Twitter users to weigh in on his ideas to end Russia’s war. In a tweet, Musk suggested UN-supervised elections in four occupied regions that Moscow has falsely annexed after what it called referendums. Zelenskiy responded with his own poll. “Which @elonmusk do you like more?,” he wrote, offering two responses: one who supports Ukraine, or supports Russia.

That is it from me, Martin Belam, for now. I will be back later on. Rachel Hall will be with you for the next few hours.

Updated at 12.38pm BST

10.41am BST

Diplomatic relations between Russia and Japan continue to deteriorate. Reuters reports the Japanese foreign minister, Yoshimasa Hayashi , has ordered a Russian consul in Sapporo to leave Japan by 10 October.

Japan’s decision comes after Russia’s FSB security agency said last month that it had detained a Japanese consul in Vladivostok for suspected espionage and ordered him to leave the country. Japan denied that the diplomat was a spy, and alleged that the consul was mistreated while in Russia custody.

Updated at 10.52am BST

10.39am BST

Zelenskiy signs decree ruling out negotiations with Putin

Volodymyr Zelenskiy has signed a decree formally declaring the prospect of any Ukrainian talks with Vladimir Putin “impossible”.

The decree formalised comments made by Zelenskiy on Friday after the Russian president proclaimed four occupied regions of Ukraine to be a part of Russia.

“He [Putin] does not know what dignity and honesty are. Therefore, we are ready for a dialogue with Russia, but with another president of Russia,” Zelenskiy said on Friday.

Clause one of the decree , which was prepared by the National Security and Defence Council of Ukraine on 30 September, reads “[Ukraine decided] to state the impossibility of conducting negotiations with the president of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin.”

Updated at 10.53am BST

10.14am BST

Here is a picture from earlier in the day as Russia’s Federation Council approved legislation to annex four occupied areas of Ukraine.

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Russia's Federation Council ratifies the annexation of four occupied Ukrainian regions invaded by Russia. Photograph: Russian Federation Council/Reuters

9.48am BST

The governor of Kursk in Russia, Roman Starovoyt , has posted to Telegram in an attempt to reassure residents that the partial mobilisation in the region is being carried out in accordance with law. He writes:

Partial mobilisation activities are taking place as planned. We are closely monitoring that everything goes according to the current legislation and the selection criteria that Russian President Vladimir Putin named. We work out individually all the complaints that come to the administration. At the moment, we have 149 appeals, 71 have already been considered. In total, 45 decisions have been made in the region to cancel the mobilisation. We will continue this work.

Updated at 10.18am BST

9.43am BST

A Russian court has fined the streaming service Twitch 4m roubles (£60,000/$68,000) for failing to remove an interview with a Ukrainian political figure, the Interfax news agency reported.

Russian authorities said the interview violated Russian laws on the spreading of fake information.

Twitch, which is owned by Amazon, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Reuters.

Updated at 10.19am BST

8.56am BST

The Russian RIA Novosti news agency is carrying this summary of what the annexation means legally according to the treaties Russia claims to have conducted with the four occupied areas of Ukraine, the so-called People’s Republics of Donetsk and Luhansk (DPR and LPR), and the regions of Kherson and Zaporizhzhia. It writes:

The borders of the DPR, LPR, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions, connected with the territory of other countries, are the state border of Russia. Until 1 January 2026, all four new subjects have a transitional period to resolve issues of military duty and military service. Within the same time frame, the issues of integrating new regions into the economic, financial, credit and legal systems of Russia, as well as into the system of government bodies, should be resolved.

Russian legislation and other normative legal acts are effective in new regions from the day they are accepted into Russia. Normative legal acts of the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions are not applied if they contradict the constitution of Russia. Official documents of the DPR and LPR are valid until the end of the transition period or the adoption of Russian relevant legal acts.

The governments of the DPR and LPR will continue to work until the formation of new cabinets of the acting heads of the republics, the governments of the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions must form acting governors in accordance with Russian law.

Citizens of Ukraine, other countries and stateless persons residing in new regions are recognised as citizens of Russia, except for those who within a month declare their desire to retain their existing citizenship or remain stateless.

Russia guarantees all peoples living in new regions the right to preserve their native language and create conditions for its study and development.

Russia and North Korea are the only UN member states to so far recognise the “results” of the “referendums” staged by the occupying authorities in Ukraine.

8.40am BST

Russia's Federation Council ratifies annexation of four occupied regions of Ukraine

The upper house of Russia’s parliament has voted to approve the incorporation of four occupied Ukrainian regions into Russia, as Moscow sets about formally annexing territory it seized from Kyiv since staging its latest invasion of Ukraine in February .

In a session on Tuesday, the Federation Council unanimously ratified legislation to annex the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions of Ukraine, following a similar vote in the state Duma, Russia’s lower house, yesterday.

Reuters reports the documents now pass back to the Kremlin for President Vladimir Putin’s final signature to complete the process of formally annexing the four regions, representing about 18% of Ukraine’s territory, in a move that is unlikely to be recognised legally outside of Russia itself.

Russia does not fully control the territory it is claiming to annex.

Updated at 8.52am BST

8.20am BST

Here are some of the latest images that we have been sent from Izium in Ukraine over the newswires.

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Women try to use their phones outside a destroyed building in Izium. Photograph: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images
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An aerial view of destroyed buildings in Izium. Photograph: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images
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Residents line up in a newly opened soup kitchen in Izium. The town is still without electricity and water since being liberated. Photograph: Paula Bronstein/Getty Images

7.35am BST

Maksym Kozytskyi , the governor of Lviv in Ukraine’s west, has posted a status update to Telegram to say that no air raid alerts happened overnight in his region. He said that in the last 24 hours there have been 145 people arriving in Lviv from the east of the country on evacuation trains, and that 552 people evacuated into Przemyśl in Poland on four evacuation trains.

7.31am BST

Russian state media Tass is reporting that North Korea has backed the outcomes of the “referendums” in four occupied areas of Ukraine that were described as a “propaganda show” and “illegal” by Ukrainian authorities in Kyiv. Tass quotes the foreign ministry saying:

We respect the will of the residents who wished to reunite with Russia, and we support the position of the Russian government on making these regions part of the country. The referendums were held in accordance with the UN charter, which enshrined the principles of equality of people and their right to self-determination, in accordance with legitimate procedures that made it possible to reflect the will of the inhabitants of the two republics and two regions.

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A woman casts a ballot in the back of a car during the ‘referendum’ in occupied Mariupol. Photograph: EPA

Updated at 7.57am BST

7.23am BST

Overnight, the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) has claimed that two people were injured on the territory it occupies, and 13 houses and 12 civil infrastructure were damaged by fire from the Ukrainian armed forces. The claims have not been independently verified. The DPR is recognised as a legitimate authority by only three UN member states: Russia, Syria and North Korea.

Updated at 7.27am BST

6.58am BST

That’s it from me, Helen Sullivan, for today as I hand over to my colleagues in the UK.

You can find the latest summary of news from Ukraine at the link below:

Updated at 6.59am BST

6.45am BST

Russia’s retreat from Lyman over the weekend elicited outcry from an unlikely source: state-run media outlets that typically cast Moscow’s war in glowing terms, the Associated Press reports.

“What happened on Saturday, Lyman it is a serious challenge for us,” Vladimir Solovyov, host of a primetime talkshow on state TV channel Russia 1 and one of the Kremlin’s biggest cheerleaders, said on air on Sunday. “We need to pull it together, make unpopular, but necessary decisions and act.”

A story about the Lyman retreat in Russia’s popular pro-Kremlin tabloid, Komsomolskaya Pravda, painted a bleak picture of the Russian military. The story, published on Sunday, said Russian forces in Lyman were plagued by supply and manpower shortages, poor coordination, and tactical mistakes orchestrated by military officials.

“It’s like it has always been,” according to an unnamed soldier quoted in the story who was part of the group that retreated from Lyman to Kreminna, another strategically important city that is in the sights of the Ukrainian army. “There is effectively no communication between different units.”

Hosts of popular news and political talkshows on Russia 1 TV channel on Sunday described the loss of Lyman as a “tough situation”.

Updated at 7.13am BST

6.25am BST

Ukraine needs to revamp its labour laws and redouble efforts to privatise thousands of companies to repair its economy, its president’s economic adviser has said.

Alexander Rodnyansky, an adviser to the president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy , said the war-torn country needed to speed up efforts to reform industries as it looked to rebuild after Russia’s invasion.

Rodnyansky told the Guardian that the Ukrainian government needed to “create the foundations for rapid economic growth” while also financing the conflict.

Ukraine faces a debt crisis as well as inflation of more than 20% as the country counts the cost of Russia’s offensive.

Rodnyansky, who is also a professor of economics at the University of Cambridge, said “receiving more foreign aid is the easiest way to fund the war”; however, efforts were being made to cut spending, collect taxes and issue debt to finance its efforts.

He said Zelenskiy and his top team were also examining priorities to rebuild the economy, including progressing efforts initiated before the war to rework 50-year-old labour regulations. “We have deep issues with our labour code, developed in the 1970s, that needs to be overhauled.

“We’re going to try to emulate a more liberal approach, like Denmark, with a flexible labour market because we need to catch up.”

Related: Ukraine ‘must revamp labour laws and step up privatisation to fix economy’

Updated at 6.41am BST

6.13am BST

Zelenskiy hits back as Elon Musk sets up Twitter poll on annexed areas of Ukraine

And in stranger news on the annexations, Elon Musk has prompted an online row with Zelenskiy after he asked Twitter users to weigh in on his ideas to end Russia’s war.

In a tweet, Musk suggested UN-supervised elections in four occupied regions that Moscow has falsely annexed after what it called referendums. The votes were denounced by Kyiv and western governments as illegal and coercive. “Russia leaves if that is will of the people,” Musk wrote.

The Tesla chief executive also suggested that Crimea, which Moscow seized in 2014, be formally recognised as Russia, that water supply to Crimea be assured, and that Ukraine remain neutral. He asked Twitter users to vote yes or no to his idea.

The tweet infuriated Ukrainians, and Zelenskiy responded with his own poll.

“Which @elonmusk do you like more?,” Zelenskiy tweeted , offering two responses: one who supports Ukraine, or supports Russia.

Ukraine’s outspoken outgoing ambassador to Germany, Andriy Melnyk, had a blunt reaction.

“Fuck off is my very diplomatic reply to you @elonmusk,” tweeted Melnyk.

Read the full story below:

Related: Zelenskiy hits back as Elon Musk sets up Twitter poll on annexed areas of Ukraine

6.01am BST

Russia no longer has full control of any of four ‘annexed’ Ukrainian provinces

My colleagues Luke Harding and Isobel Koshiw in Kyiv, and Peter Beaumont in Sloviansk reported this story late on Monday night:

Russia no longer has full control of any of the four provinces of Ukraine it says it annexed last week after Ukrainian troops reportedly advanced dozens of kilometres in Kherson province in the south of the country and made additional gains in the east.

On Monday, the Russian military acknowledged that Kyiv’s forces had broken through in the Kherson region. It said the Ukrainian army and its “superior tank units” had managed to “penetrate the depths of our defence” around the villages of Zoltaya Balka and Alexsandrovka.

Interactive

The ministry of defence spokesperson Igor Konashenkov said Russian troops had occupied what he called a “pre-prepared defensive line”. They continued to “inflict massive fire damage” on Ukrainian forces, he claimed.

His comments are an admission that Ukraine’s southern counter-offensive is dramatically gaining pace, two months after it began. Ukrainian brigades appear to have achieved their biggest breakthrough in the region since the war started, bursting through the frontline and advancing rapidly along the Dnieper River.

Read the full story below:

Related: Russia no longer has full control of any of four ‘annexed’ Ukrainian provinces

5.49am BST

Russian lawmakers set to formalise ‘annexation’

Lawmakers in Russia’s upper house, the federation council, are expected to formalise the illegal annexation of four Ukrainian provinces on Tuesday.

On Monday, the lower house of Russia’s parliament, the state Duma, approved laws on annexing four Ukrainian territories into Russia. No lawmakers in the lower house voted against the bill to incorporate the Zaporizhzhia, Kherson, Donetsk and Luhansk regions into Russia.

This is despite Russia no longer having full control of any of the four provinces of Ukraine it says it annexed last week after Ukrainian troops reportedly advanced dozens of kilometres in Kherson province in the south of the country and made additional gains in the east.

On Monday, the Kremlin also said that it was still determining which areas of occupied Ukraine it has “annexed” , suggesting Russia does not know where its self-declared international borders are.

The surprising admission came in a phone call with journalists, during which Dmitry Peskov was peppered with requests to clarify to which Ukrainian territory Putin had laid claim at a pomp-filled Kremlin ceremony last week.

Updated at 6.42am BST

5.36am BST

Ukrainian forces break through Russian defences in south

Ukrainian forces have broken through Russian defences in the south of the country while expanding their rapid offensive in the east, seizing back more territory in areas annexed by Russia and threatening supply lines for its troops, Reuters reports.

Making their biggest breakthrough in the south since the war began, Ukrainian forces recaptured several villages in an advance along the strategic Dnipro River on Monday, Ukrainian officials and a Russian-installed leader in the area said.

Ukrainian forces in the south destroyed 31 Russian tanks and one multiple rocket launcher, the military’s southern operational command said in a nightly update, without providing details of where the fighting occurred.

Reuters reported that it could not not immediately verify the battlefield accounts.

The southern breakthrough mirrors recent Ukrainian advances in the east even as Russia has tried to raise the stakes by annexing land, ordering mobilisation, and threatening nuclear retaliation.

Ukraine has made significant advances in two of the four Russian-occupied regions Moscow last week annexed after what it called referendums - votes that were denounced by Kyiv and Western governments as illegal and coercive.

In a sign Ukraine is building momentum on the eastern front, Reuters saw columns of Ukrainian military vehicles heading on Monday to reinforce the rail hub of Lyman, retaken at the weekend, and a staging post to press into the Donbas region.

Updated at 5.36am BST

5.22am BST

Summary and welcome

Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the Ukraine war. My name is Helen Sullivan and I’ll be taking you through the latest developments as they happen.

Ukrainian forces have broken through Russian defences in the south of the country while expanding their rapid offensive in the east, seizing back more territory in areas annexed by Russia and threatening supply lines for its troops.

We’ll have more on this shortly, in the mean time here is the key news from the last few hours:

  • Russia no longer has full control of any of the four provinces of Ukraine it says it annexed last week, after Ukrainian troops reportedly advanced dozens of kilometres in Kherson province. The Russian military has acknowledged that Kyiv’s forces had broken through in the Kherson region. It said the Ukrainian army and its “superior tank units” had managed to “penetrate the depths of our defence” around the villages of Zoltaya Balka and Alexsandrovka.

  • Ukrainian brigades appear to have achieved their biggest breakthrough in the region since the war started, bursting through the frontline and advancing rapidly along the Dnieper River. Lyman’s recapture by Ukrainian troops is Russia’s largest battlefield loss since Ukraine’s lightning counteroffensive in the north-eastern Kharkiv region in September.

  • Elon Musk has prompted an online row with Zelenskiy after he asked Twitter users to weigh in on his ideas to end Russia’s war. In a tweet, Musk suggested UN-supervised elections in four occupied regions that Moscow has falsely annexed after what it called referendums. Zelenskiy responded with his own poll. “Which @elonmusk do you like more?,” he wrote, offering two responses: one who supports Ukraine, or supports Russia.

  • The US will deliver four more of the advanced rocket systems to Ukraine. The High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, known as HIMARS, will be part of a new $625m aid package to be announced on Tuesday, according to US officials.

  • North Korea voiced support Tuesday for Russia’s annexation of areas of Ukraine that its troops occupy, and accused the US and its allies of acting like a gangster by leading a drive at the UN against Moscow’s behaviour.

  • The lower house of Russia’s parliament, the state Duma, has approved laws on annexing four Ukrainian territories into Russia. No lawmakers in the lower house voted against the bill to incorporate the Zaporizhzhia, Kherson, Donetsk and Luhansk regions into Russia. Lawmakers in the upper house, Russia’s federation council, are expected to formalise the illegal annexation on Tuesday.

  • Russia has put Marina Ovsyannikova, the former state TV editor who interrupted a news broadcast to protest against the Ukraine war, on a wanted list after she reportedly escaped house arrest. The Ukrainian-born Ovsyannikova, 44, gained international attention in March after bursting into a studio of Channel One, her then employer, to denounce the Ukraine war during a live news bulletin.

Comments / 24

Gary Bargdill
10-04

No negotiations until Russia is removed from Ukrainian soil including Crimea. Russia must be taught to respect other nations borders.

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29
Just a old Lady
10-04

the Russian people don't want to continue this war but there leader does. The solution is get rid of the leader but how? the people here in the United States need that money that's being funded to Ukraine.

Reply(1)
10
Steven Butikofer
10-04

Must be a reason,why would they retreat?Wonder why Nato or the UN isn't going after Russia for was crimes? Too many questions not enough answers!We can assume....but?

Reply(6)
5

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