- Sputnik International, 1920, 25.02.2022
Russia's Special Operation in Ukraine
On February 24, 2022 Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine, aiming to liberate the Donbass region where the people's republics of Donetsk and Lugansk had been living under regular attacks from Kiev's forces.
Russian 'Oniks' cruise missile - Sputnik International

UPDATES: Russia to Reinforce Western Borders So That It Won't Occur to Anyone to Attack It - Kremlin

On 24 February, Russia launched a special military operation in Ukraine after the Donbass republics of Donetsk and Lugansk appealed for help in defending themselves against Ukrainian forces. In response to Russia's military operation, the Western countries have rolled out a comprehensive sanctions campaign against Moscow.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Thursday that he had held talks with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba regarding the organisation of a meeting between the top diplomats.
In turn, Russain Deputy Foreign Minister Andrey Rudenko said that Moscow has received Ankara’s signal about the possibility of organising another meeting between Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.
On 29 March, Russia and Ukraine concluded the latest round of peace talks in Istanbul, Turkey. Moscow has announced its intention to scale down military activities in the Kiev and Chernigov regions and focus on its goals in Donbass.
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Table of contents
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03:42 GMT 02.04.2022
Press Secretary Jen Psaki holds a media briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S., March 3, 2022. - Sputnik International, 1920, 01.04.2022
Russia's Special Operation in Ukraine
White House: US Sending Kiev Equipment to Deploy in Event of Chemical, Biological Attack
02:41 GMT 02.04.2022
Chinese Trade With Russia Should Not Be Hit by Ukrainian Crisis – Foreign Ministry
China is not a party to the conflict in Ukraine and its trade relations with other countries, including Russia, should not be hit, Director-General of the Department of European Affairs of the Chinese Foreign Ministry Wang Lutong said on Saturday.

"We will not do anything consciously to bypass sanctions imposed by the United States and the European Union. You know our position, we are against the sanctions ... China is not party to the conflict in Ukraine and we do not think that the normal trade cooperation with other countries should be hit. Even Europe is involved in normal business with Russia, you have not terminated you trade with Russia, and our normal trade cooperation with Moscow must not be hit," Wang said. commenting on the China-EU summit held on Friday.
01:59 GMT 02.04.2022
Zelensky on Belgorod Oil Depot Fire: I Do Not Discuss Any of My Orders
When asked about the Friday fire that hit the oil depot in Russia's Belgorod, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that the he did not discuss any of his orders.

On Friday morning, a fire broke out at the oil depot in Belgorod. According to regional governor Vyacheslav Gladkov, this happened as a result of shelling by two Ukrainian helicopters, which penetrated Russian airspace at a low altitude.

"I do not discuss any of my orders as commander-in-chief, the leader of this state. There are things which I only share with the armed forces of Ukraine when they talk to me," Zelensky told the Fox News broadcaster.
00:30 GMT 02.04.2022
US to Provide Ukraine With Additional Military Assistance Worth $300Mln - Pentagon
The United States will provide Ukraine with the additional military assistance worth $300 million, the Department of Defense [DoD] said.

"Through USAI [Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative], DoD will provide up to $300 million in security assistance to bolster Ukraine’s capacity to defend itself. This decision underscores the United States’ unwavering commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity in support of its heroic efforts to repel Russia’s war of choice," Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said.
21:42 GMT 01.04.2022
Wizz Air Cancels All Flights to/From Russia Until October 30 Over Situation in Ukraine
The Hungarian airline Wizz Air has announced its decision to cancel all flight to and from Russia until October 30 over the Russian military operation in Ukraine.

"Wizz Air is constantly monitoring the ongoing situation, therefore all flights to/from Russia will be cancelled for the full summer season schedule up until 30 October. The flights are being removed from the booking system. Any further changes will be announced in due course," the airline tweeted on late Friday.

Wizz Air in fact stopped the air traffic to and from Russia after February 24 when the military operation started. However, it was unclear how long the flights would be suspended.
21:04 GMT 01.04.2022
ICRC Says Team in Ukraine Failed to Reach Mariupol, Will Have Another Go on Saturday
An International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) team was unable to arrive in Mariupol on Friday to help with the evacuation of civilians due to dangerous conditions, a new attempt will be made tomorrow, the ICRC said in a statement.

"The ICRC team, which consists of three vehicles and nine personnel, did not reach Mariupol or facilitate the safe passage of civilians today. They will try again on Saturday to facilitate the safe passage of civilians from Mariupol," the humanitarian organization said in a statement.

According to the ICRC, the team had to return to Zaporizhzhia "after arrangements and conditions made it impossible to proceed."

The organization stressed that the success of the operation depends on the parties upholding the agreements and providing security guarantees.

"If and when the safe passage operation does happen, the ICRC's role as a neutral intermediary would be to accompany the convoy out from Mariupol to another city in Ukraine," the ICRC said.
20:34 GMT 01.04.2022
Europol's Director Says Agency Suspended Cooperation With Russia
The EU Agency for Law Enforcement Cooperation (Europol) has suspended cooperation with Russia since the beginning of March over Ukraine, Europol Executive Director Catherine De Bolle said on Friday.

"We had a strategic partnership with Russia since 2003; however, the agency has suspended all cooperation with Russia since the beginning of the month," De Bolle told French magazine Le Journal du Dimanche.

De Bolle noted that a Ukrainian liaison officer continues to work at the agency's headquarters in The Hague, providing "all our partners a direct access to the Ukrainian police in order to better assist them."
20:00 GMT 01.04.2022
EU Dependence on Gas From Russia Relevant for Another 10 Years - Erdogan's Spokesman
Turkish presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said that the issue of Europe's "dependence" on Russian gas would be relevant in the next 10 years.

"In the next 10 years, this issue will be relevant, more precisely, within 10 years," Kalin said in an interview with the TRT Haber broadcaster.

He recalled that Europe had previously developed the Nabucco project as an alternative to Russian supplies.

"If we talk about alternatives, then, as you know, Turkey and Azerbaijan have implemented the TANAP project [Trans-Anatolian Natural Gas Pipeline], its expansion can be considered as an alternative. Connection of various sources here is possible through the territory of Turkey," Kalin said.
18:49 GMT 01.04.2022
Kremlin: Russia Will Strengthen Its Western Borders to Maintain Necessary Parity So That 'It Would Not Occur to Anyone to Attack' It
18:41 GMT 01.04.2022
Russian Forces Use High-Precision Weapon to Hit Ukrainian Rocket Systems
18:29 GMT 01.04.2022
Erdogan's Spokesman: Plan Needed to Gradually Lift Sanctions From Russia if Agreements Reached Between Moscow and Kiev
18:19 GMT 01.04.2022
Meeting of Russian and Ukrainian Foreign Ministers 'On Agenda', Erdogan's Spokesman Says
18:07 GMT 01.04.2022
UN Has No Information About Attacks on Railway Tankers With Chlorine in Ukraine
The United Nations has no information about possible attacks on railway tankers containing chlorine, UN spokesperson Farhan Haq said on Friday.

Deputy Russian Ambassador to the United Nations Dmitriy Polyansky said earlier in the day there is credible information that Ukrainian nationalists are planning a provocation in the Kharkov region, including attacks on railway tankers containing up to 800 tonnes of chlorine.

"We do not have information on this. Of course, we are open to receiving information from the parties," Haq said during a press briefing.

The UN spokesperson called on all sides in Ukraine to avoid any actions that could escalate the situation.
17:59 GMT 01.04.2022
Head of Russian Investigative Committee Orders to Probe Ukrainian Air Strikes at Oil Depot in Russia's Belgorod
17:44 GMT 01.04.2022
WATCH Russia Launch Its Oniks Cruise Missiles to Hit Ukrainian Military Infrastructure
17:24 GMT 01.04.2022
UN Says No Indication Its Vehicles Misused in Ukraine
The United Nations does not see any indications that its vehicles have been misused in Ukraine, UN spokesperson Farhan Haq said on Friday.

Russian Ambassador to the UN Vasily Nebenzia on Tuesday expressed concerns about the misuse of vehicles belonging to international organizations by Ukrainian troops for military purposes such as to transport weapons. Nebenzia said Vehicles with United Nations insignia have been being confiscated by Ukrainian forces and also OSCE vehicles as well.

"Right now there is no indication of any misuse of UN vehicles at this point," Haq said during a press briefing.

The spokesperson acknowledged that one vehicle was taken from its area, but United Nations staff was able to disable it.

"None of our vehicles is being misused," Haq said.

Since, video evidence has surfaced on media and social media of Ukrainian troops misusing ambulances for transporting soldiers and vehicles of international corporations.
17:22 GMT 01.04.2022
US Senators Urge Biden to Suspend Tax Treaty, Data Exchange With Russia
US Senators Rob Portman and Ben Cardin have urged President Joe Biden to consider suspending the Income Tax Convention with Russia to halt the sharing of tax information, discourage US investment in the country, and end preferential tax treatment of Russian businesses in response to the military operation in Ukraine, according to a letter out Friday.

"We do not believe it is in the interest of the United States to engage in information exchange under this Convention and urge you to consider suspending this practice. We were pleased that the United Kingdom has already taken such action, and we believe suspension of tax information exchange represents another opportunity to work closely with our allies in response to Russia’s invasion," the letter to Biden said.

They also suggested a suspension of the Income Tax Convention altogether, which they say would prevent preferential tax treatment for Russian businesses in the US and discourage American investment in Russia.

The US should suspend the tax treaty until adherence "returns to the orbit" of American national interest, the senators said in the letter.
17:07 GMT 01.04.2022
Germany Reportedly Exploring Possibility of Ousting 'Significant Number' of Russian Diplomats, But There's No Consensus in Government
17:06 GMT 01.04.2022
Moscow to Respond to Expulsion of First Secretary of Russian Embassy From Bulgaria
17:05 GMT 01.04.2022
Ukraine Declines to Comment on Involvement in Helicopter Shelling of Russian Oil Depot
Ukrainian Defence Ministry spokesman Oleksandr Motuzyanyk on Friday refrained from commenting on the involvement of Kiev in the helicopter attack on an oil depot in the Russian city of Belgorod bordering Ukraine.

"We will neither confirm nor deny," Motuzyanik said at a briefing, commenting on strikes by Ukrainian helicopters on the oil depot.

On Friday morning, a fire broke out at the oil depot in Belgorod. According to local governor Vyacheslav Gladkov, this happened as a result of shelling by two Ukrainian helicopters, which penetrated Russian airspace at low altitude.

The Russian defence ministry said in an evening briefing on Friday that the Belgorod oil facility was not part of military infrastructure.
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