Situation in Ukraine: developments since yesterday

Talks between Ukraine and Russia

The delegations of Ukraine and Russia held a round of talks. The Ukrainian delegation aims to obtain a ceasefire agreement. The sides identified a series of key subjects on which particular decisions were agreed and considered the possibility of holding a new round of talks in the near future so as to further address the given issues, the adviser to President Volodymyr Zelensky stated after the delegations’ meeting.

ICC Prosecutor opens inquiry into crimes against Ukrainian citizens

The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Karim Khan decided to proceed with opening an investigation into the Situation in Ukraine, as rapidly as possible. He said there is a reasonable basis to believe that both alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity have been committed in Ukraine.

Kyiv asks EU to urgently accept Ukraine into EU

Ukraine filed an application to join the European Union by a special procedure. The President of Ukraine said he discussed with his counterparts from Portugal, Lithuania, France and Poland, with the Prime Ministers of Belgium, Spain and the UK. The support offered by the European partners is unconditional and unprecedented.

European Council President Charles Michel stated for the French TV station BFM that a debate on Ukraine’s application is to take place. “This is a debate which, in any case, will be held,” Michel stated. He said the bloc already has a “very powerful” association agreement with Ukraine. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said that Ukraine is “one of us and we want them in the European Union.”

NATO allies step up support for Ukraine

NATO partners are providing Ukraine with air-defence missiles and anti-tank weapons, NATO Chief Jens Stoltenberg said Monday. He noted humaniutrain and financial assitance will also be offered.

Canada will supply anti-tank weapons and upgraded ammunition to Ukraine and will ban imports of Russian crude oil, Canadian Premier Justin Trudeau was quoted by Reuters as saying.

Bulgaria, Poland and Slovakia will transfer 70 MiG-29 and Su-25 aircraft to the armed forces of Ukraine.

Ukrainian diplomatic service mobilizes unprecedentedly broad anti-Putin coalition

“During the first 100 hours of our country’s defense against Russian invaders, Ukrainian diplomacy mobilized more than $ 1 billion of help from the partners for the purchase of modern weapons and ammunition for the Ukrainian Defense Forces,” said Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba. “The anti-Putin coalition currently includes 84 countries and 13 international organizations. Russia is already suffering unprecedented losses.

“The anti-Putin coalition of states has imposed three packages of painful sanctions against Russia: the list of Russian banks to disconnect from SWIFT is being finalized, half of the financial reserves of the Central Bank of Russia are frozen, restrictions are imposed on Sberbank of Russia, there is introduced a ban on the sale, supply, transfer and export of oil refining technologies to Russia, the use of dual-use export licenses is terminated, in some countries the issuance of visas for Russian citizens was suspended.”

Lithuania offers Moldova €750,000 in relief aid for managing flow of Ukrainians

The decision was taken following a telephone conversation betwen Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilița and her Lithuanian counterpart Ingrida Šimonytė on February 25, which centered on the management of the flow of refugees.

Latvia allows its citizens to fight in Ukraine

Latvia’s parliament voted unanimously on February 28 to allow its nationals to fight in Ukraine if willing, the parliament said in a statement. The legislation provides service in the Ukrainian Armed Forces will not represent a restriction for Ukrainians to obtain Latvian nationality by naturalization.

China makes call for calm

Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said on Monday that all sides should remain calm and avoid further escalation, after Russian President Vladimir Putin put his country’s nuclear deterrent on high alert. Wang also reiterated China’s view that all countries’ legitimate security concerns should be taken seriously. He noted that China and Russia are strategic partners, but not allies, and Beijing decides its policy itself in each case apart.

Snake Island defenders captured

Ukraine’s Navy said that 13 border guards defending Snake Island are alive and have been captured by Russia.

Consequences of Russian troops’ bombardment in Kharkov

The bombardment in the city of Kharkiv on Monday killed nine civilians, including three children, and wounded 37 others. According to social media videos, multiple rockets were seen exploding closely together in a residential part of the Saltivka neighborhood, near a supermarket in the northeast of the city, which the Russian military has frequently targeted.

Switzerland renounces neutrality

The Swiss government broke with a long-entrenched tradition of neutrality and agreed to enforce European Union sanctions against Russian companies and individuals, including President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, as the representative of the Federal Council of Switzerland Andre Simonize announced after an emergency meeting of the Council.

Russia suspended from all UEFA and FIFA competitions

UEFA and FIFA have acted in unison to suspend Russian teams from international football competition on Monday as global sport closed the door on Russia following the invasion of Ukraine. The most powerful bodies in football joined the International Olympic Committee in acting after days of growing protest.

Kyiv peripheries hit with ballistic missiles

Russia launched an Iskander ballistic missile on Kyiv. Anton Gerashchenko, adviser to Ukraine’s head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, said Russia aims to raise the stake after the talks with the Ukrainian delegation and intends to besiege Kyiv and Mariupol.

Russian stocks plunge following tougher sanctions

Russia’s ruble plunged nearly 30% to a record low at one point, forcing the central bank to raise interest rates to 20%, from 9.5%. Its fall later eased back to 20% down. Russian Sberbank shares fell by 73% at the opening of trading against the background of the introduction of a new package of economic sanctions against the aggressor country, which include the disconnection of a number of banks from the international system SWIFT.

Supply-related problems reported in Kyiv

Residents of Kyiv posted photos of empty store shelves and long lines at shops on social media.

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