'Impossible to isolate Russia', Putin warns, Zelensky fears genocide: 10 points

Published on May 27, 2022 06:52 AM IST
Ukraine war: Several parts in the war-torn nation have witnessed an escalation in fighting in the last few days. 
Ukraine war: Russian President Vladimir Putin has yet again warned the West over sanctions. (File photo) (via REUTERS)
Ukraine war: Russian President Vladimir Putin has yet again warned the West over sanctions. (File photo) (via REUTERS)
By | Edited by Swati Bhasin

Underlining that it was “impossible to isolate” Moscow, Russian president Vladimir Putin on Thursday warned the West, stressing that “those who try would primarily hurt themselves”. His remarks come as the Ukraine war grinds into the fourth month with global food and fuel supply hit badly. A relentless Putin, however, is showing no signs of budging. Meanwhile, Ukraine’s Volodymyr Zelensky has accused the Kremlin of attempting a “genocide” in Donbas.

Here are ten updates on the Ukraine war:

1. Putin was speaking via video to members of the Eurasian Economic Forum, which comprises several ex-Soviet nations, on Thursday when he said it was “impossible, utterly unrealistic in the modern world”. He also spoke of “inflation unseen in 40 years, growing unemployment, rupture of supply chains and the worsening of global crises in such sensitive spheres as food”, while elaborating on the challenges the West is facing.

2. “This is not a joke. This is a serious thing that will have an impact on the entire system of economic and political relations,” Putin was quoted as saying in reports as he also hit out at the nations for seizing Russian reserves with a warning - “The theft of others’ assets never brought any good.”

3. Zelensky has accused the Kremlin seeking to commit "genocide" across the eastern Donbas region, largely controllled by rebels. “We are fighting for Ukraine to be provided with all the weapons needed to change the nature of the fighting and start moving faster and more confidently toward the expulsion of the occupiers,” the 44-year-old leader said in his nightly address.

4. After failing to capture the capital city of Kyiv, Moscow was following an “obvious policy of genocide in Donbas”, he said, seeking more weapons. “They want to turn Popasna, Bakhmut, Lyman, Lysychansk and Sievierodonetsk into ashes as they did with Volnovakha and Mariupol,” Zelenskyy said.

5. "The situation remains difficult, because the Russian army has thrown all its forces at taking the Lugansk region," regional governor Sergiy Gaiday said in a video on Telegram. "Extremely fierce fighting is taking place on the outskirts of Severodonetsk. They are simply destroying the city, they are shelling it every day, shelling without pause."

6. Ukraine’s foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Twitter: "We need more heavy weapons delivered as soon as possible, especially MLRS (multiple launch rocket systems) to repel Russian attacks.”

7. In his conversation with Italian prime minister Mario Draghi, Putin on Thursday said that Moscow “is ready to make a significant contribution to overcoming the food crisis through the export of grain and fertilizer on the condition that politically motivated restrictions imposed by the West are lifted.”

8. Britain shot back at Putin over his remarks as Secretary Liz Truss said the Russian leader was “trying to hold the world to ransom” by demanding some sanctions be lifted before allowing Ukrainian grain shipments to resume.

9. The US embassy has reopened in Kyiv but Defense press secretary John Kibry has clarified: “Nothing has changed about the president’s direction that US troops will not be fighting in this war in Ukraine,” Kirby told reporters at the Pentagon. He said active discussions about security are ongoing with the State Department.

10. Russia launched an assault on Ukraine on February 24. There has been no let up in the attacks since then as the world stares at a shortage of food supplies, fuel crisis and an increase in hostilities.

(With inputs from Reuters, AP, AFP)

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