- 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.
Azovstal plant in Mariupol - Sputnik International

LIVE UPDATES: Shots, Explosions Heard in Area Surrounding Azovstal, Sputnik Correspondent Reports

Russia launched its military operation in Ukraine in late February after the Donetsk and Lugansk People's republics appealed for help to defend them against Kiev aggression.
Russian armed forces and Donbass militia continue their advance as part of the special operation in Ukraine, putting pressure on the Ukrainian military. Previously, they liberated the city of Mariupol.
The Azovstal steel plant remains the last stronghold in Mariupol of Ukrainian nationalists - including members of the infamous Azov neo-Nazi battalion. Over the past two days, more than 80 civilians have been evacuated from the grounds of the Azovstal plant by Russian troops acting under instructions from Russia's President Vladimir Putin.
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Table of contents
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03:48 GMT 03.05.2022
Borrell Announces Disconnection of New Russian Banks From SWIFT
European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell arrives for a media conference after a meeting of EU foreign ministers at the European Council building in Brussels, Monday, May 10, 2021. - Sputnik International, 1920, 03.05.2022
Borrell: More Russian Banks Will Be Disconnected From SWIFT System
02:14 GMT 03.05.2022
In this image from video provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks from Kiev, Ukraine, Tuesday, April 26, 2022. - Sputnik International, 1920, 03.05.2022
Zelensky Claims Ukraine Doesn't Attack Russian Settlements as Border Regions Come Under Fire
23:17 GMT 02.05.2022
Pentagon: US Military Readiness Unaffected by Aid to Ukraine
The Pentagon - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.05.2022
US Says Military Readiness Unaffected by Aid to Ukraine Despite Javelin Shortage Concerns
21:39 GMT 02.05.2022
Boris Johnson to Address Ukrainian Rada Via Video Link Tuesday - Downing Street
In this image provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, left, and Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson talk during their walk in downtown Kiev, Ukraine, Saturday, April 9, 2022. - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.05.2022
Russia's Special Operation in Ukraine
UK's Johnson to Address Verkhovna Rada, Announce New $375 Million Defense Package to Ukraine
21:10 GMT 02.05.2022
Lavrov Comment on Zelensky, Nazism in Ukraine 'Lowest Form of Propaganda' - State Dept.
The comments by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov about Volodymyr Zelensky and Nazism in Ukraine is “the lowest form of propaganda,” US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said on Monday.

“The statement from Foreign Minister Lavrov, it was the lowest form of racism, it was the lowest form of propaganda,” Price said.
20:02 GMT 02.05.2022
No Indication Russia Received Military Assistance From Third Countries - Pentagon
The United States has seen no indication that Russia has received any sort of military assistance from a third nation amid Moscow's special military operation in Ukraine, Defense Department spokesperson John Kirby said on Monday.

“I have seen no indication that they [Russia] have gotten external assistance from a third nation,” Kirby said during a press briefing. “I just have not seen any indication that they're trying to draw on external resources of other governments or countries.”

The Defense Department said specifically it has not seen any assistance from China to Russia and underscored that Moscow has accumulated “an awful lot” of weaponry on the border with Ukraine ahead of the beginning of its special military operation in Ukraine.
19:44 GMT 02.05.2022
EU Must Concentrate on Renewable Energy Sources Because of Inability to Replace Russian Gas, Says Commissioner
In this June 1, 2021 file photo, people explore the wadden sea at the island Norderney, Germany, in front of wind turbines, producing renewable energy. - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.05.2022
EU Should Focus on Renewables Due to Inability to Replace Russian Gas, Commissioner Says
19:33 GMT 02.05.2022
US Military Much More Concerned About China Than Russia, Air Force Chief Notes
China poses a much more concerning long-term challenge and threat to the strategic capabilities of the United States than Russia, Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall told an audience at the Brookings Institution on Monday.

"Of the two I am much more concerned about China than Russia," Kendall said. "They have the resources, they have the capability [and] they have the intent."

China has the time to mature the long-term military capabilities that are designed to defeat the long-term US capability to project its power around the world, Kendall explained.

"China has the ambition to be the great power on the face of the earth. They have the ambition to be the great global power and to do that they have to basically displace the United States," he said.

Kendall said he did not think China was interested in any territorial expansion but that they were interested in having as much global influence as possible so that they could set the rules for the global economy.
19:29 GMT 02.05.2022
US Supports Any Decisions Finland Makes on Applying for NATO Membership, White House Says
The United States supports any decisions by Finland with respect to joining NATO, White House spokesperson Jen Psaki said on Monday when asked to comment on reports that Helsinki will apply for alliance membership next week.

"We've seen some reporting, and I'm not going to speak for them. We of course support the policy of NATO for those who are interested in joining to aspire and meet the qualifications to join, and certainly support any decisions by Finnish leaders and others to... apply," Psaki told reporters.

Asked about US President Joe Biden’s general view on NATO enlargement, she noted that Biden supports the alliance's open door policy. He also supports all those who have aspirations to join the alliance, she added.
18:28 GMT 02.05.2022
US Plans to Return Embassy to Kiev as Other Countries Already Reopening Their Missions
The US embassy in Ukraine is hoping to return to Kiev in late May as European countries' missions are already resuming their operation in the Ukrainian capital.

Last week, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that the embassy would reopen in Kiev in a couple of weeks.
"Today is my first day back to Ukraine and we are doing it as a day trip. We expect to continue to do day trips [from Poland to Lviv] for the next week or two, and then we very much hope that the conditions will permit to go back into Kiev by the end of the month," US Charge d'Affaires Kristina Kvien said on Monday during a press conference in Lviv broadcast on social media.

When asked if she could get to Kiev immediately, the diplomat replied that she is following instructions from security specialists and will return to the capital once they give the green light.

Meanwhile, several European countries announced on Monday their embassies are reopening in Kiev, including Hungary, Cyprus and Sweden.

"Like other EU countries, we have decided to bring back to Kiev the Hungarian embassy that was temporarily transferred to Lvov," Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto said in a video address posted on social media, adding that the physical part of the relocation was done on the weekend and the embassy is now working in Kiev.

Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde tweeted that her country's mission will reopen in Kiev on Wednesday and thanked Poland for temporarily hosting the mission.

The Cypriot Foreign Ministry also announced that its mission will begin gradual resumption of operations in Kiev, suspended on 26 February, starting this Tuesday. Denmark and South Korea announced on Monday reopening their mission in Kiev as well.

Some countries did not wait that long, as the French Foreign Ministry announced transferring the country's embassy in Ukraine back to Kiev from Lvov in mid-April.
18:24 GMT 02.05.2022
Scholz: West’s Anti-Russia Sanctions May Be Lifted Only in Agreement With Kiev
The Western sanctions against Russia will be lifted only in agreement with Ukraine, and Moscow needs to negotiate with Kiev, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said on Monday.

"Without mutual understanding with Ukraine, we will not lift the sanctions," Scholz told the ZDF broadcaster, adding that Moscow "needs to negotiate" with Kiev.

The chancellor added that the goal of the West is "the immediate cessation of hostilities."
18:21 GMT 02.05.2022
A woman walks past a monument to Russian poet Alexander Pushkin at sunset in central Moscow on November 21, 2016.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.05.2022
Italian President Cautions Against Negative Attitude Toward Russian Culture
17:57 GMT 02.05.2022
These Buildings Survived WW II but Have Not Survived Ukrainian Forces' Shelling, Mariupol Resident Says
17:34 GMT 02.05.2022
Scholz: Direct Participation of NATO in Ukraine Conflict Ruled Out
17:23 GMT 02.05.2022
Almost 3.1Mln Ukrainian Refugees Entered Poland Since 24 February, Border Guard Says
Almost 3.1 million refugees have arrived in Poland since the start of the Russian special operation in Ukraine, the Polish Border Guard said on Monday.

"Since February 24, Border Guard officers have processed 3.097 million people at checkpoints on their way from Ukraine to Poland," the service tweeted.

According to Polish border guards, 19,600 refugees from Ukraine have arrived in Poland in the past 24 hours.

At the same time, there are more people leaving than arriving in Poland, with 23,300 having crossed to Ukraine last Sunday, the border guard added.

On 16 March, refugees in Poland began receiving special identification numbers PESEL, which allow them to legally live, study, work and receive social benefits in the country.

On 21 April, Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski said that the Polish capital's population had increased by 15% since February 24 due to the influx of refugees from Ukraine, entailing pressure on public services.
17:21 GMT 02.05.2022
Pentagon: US Has Trained Over 170 Ukrainians on Howitzers, Another 50 Graduated on Monday
The United States has trained over 170 Ukrainian military personnel at more than one location outside the country on howitzers and another 50 will graduate later in the day, a senior US defence official said on Monday.

"We can now report that more than 170 Ukrainian military soldiers have been trained at more than one location on the M777 and there is another 50 plus that are scheduled to graduate today," the official said during a press briefing.
16:57 GMT 02.05.2022
Shots and Explosions Heard in Area Surrounding Azovstal, Sputnik Correspondent Reports
Gunshots and explosions are heard near the Azovstal plant in Mariupol on Monday, a Sputnik correspondent reported from the scene.

Earlier in the day, a spokesperson of the Interior Ministry troops of the Donetsk People’s Republic said that "the Ukrainian side began to break the ceasefire and [the DPR] had to take retaliatory actions."
16:39 GMT 02.05.2022
US Defence Official Confirms Over 5,000 Javelins Made It to Ukraine Since Start of Russia's Op
16:34 GMT 02.05.2022
Russian Forces Destroy Ukrainian Artillery and Ammo Depot in Dnepropetrovsk Region, Russian MoD Says
16:23 GMT 02.05.2022
White House: First Lady Jill Biden to Visit Romania, Slovakia on 5-9 May
First Lady Jill Biden is scheduled to visit Romania and Slovakia this week to meet with US troops, diplomats and with Ukrainian refugees, the White House said on Monday.

"First Lady Jill Biden will travel to Romania and Slovakia from May 5 - May 9, 2022. During her visit, she will meet with US service members, US embassy personnel, displaced Ukrainian parents and children, humanitarian aid workers, and educators," the White House said in a press release.

Biden is expected to arrive at Mihail Kogalniceau Airbase in Romania on Friday, where she will meet with US service members, the release said. Later in the day, Biden will meet with Ukrainian refugees, humanitarian aid workers, and American diplomats in Bucharest, the release said.

The First lady will conclude her Friday activities with a trip to meet US diplomats in Bratislava, Slovakia, the release said.

On Saturday, Biden will meet more Ukrainian refugees and humanitarian aid workers in Kosice and Vysne Nemecke, the release added.

Biden will wrap up her trip with a meeting with Slovakian government officials on May 9, according to the release.
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