Arrest warrant issued for Vladimir Putin over ‘war crimes’ in Ukraine
Russian President Vladimir Putin visited the occupied city of Mariupol on Sunday morning -a day after making a surprise visit to Crimea.
The city in Donetsk was captured by Russian forces after a gruesome battle in May last year and has remained under the control of Moscow’s fighters since.
The Russian president reached Mariupol and was seen driving a car around the city as he visited several districts of the city. Mr Putin also met with the top brass leading his military operation in Ukraine, state media reported.
The leader, facing an arrest warrant from the International Criminal Court for war crimes, also met with chief of the general staff Valery Gerasimov who is in charge of Moscow’s war in Ukraine.
It comes ahead of a visit by Chinese President Xi Jinping to Moscow on Monday. The two leaders will discuss a “comprehensive partnership and strategic co-operation”, the Kremlin said.
Putin meets top command of Russia’s military operation in Ukraine
Russian president Vladimir Putin has met with the top brass leading his military operation in Ukraine, state media said today.
The leader, facing an arrest warrant for war crimes, also met with chief of the general staff Valery Gerasimov who is in charge of Moscow’s war in Ukraine.
The meeting took place at the Rostov-on-Don command post in southern Russia, reported TASS news agency.
Arpan Rai19 March 2023 04:17
Why China is trying to mediate in the Ukraine invasion
The war has handed Beijing opportunities that it might once have considered to be quite a lot further down the line, writes Mary Dejevsky.
Read Mary’s full piece here:
Matt Mathers19 March 2023 12:00
ICYMI: Russia, Ukraine extend grain deal to aid world’s poor
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Ukrainian officials say an unprecedented wartime deal that allows grain to flow from Ukraine to countries in Africa, the Middle East and Asia where hunger is a growing threat and high food prices are pushing more people into poverty has been extended.
Russia, Ukraine extend grain deal to aid world’s poor
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Ukrainian officials say an unprecedented wartime deal that allows grain to flow from Ukraine to countries in Africa, the Middle East and Asia where hunger is a growing threat and high food prices are pushing more people into poverty has been extended
Matt Mathers19 March 2023 11:30
Mid-morning re-cap cont.
* Xi Jinping walks a diplomatic tightrope as he heads to Moscow on Monday, seeking to present China as a global peacemaker while strengthening ties with Putin, his closest ally, who is increasingly isolated by the West.
* Russia, China and Iran have completed three-way naval exercises in the Arabian Sea that included artillery fire at targets on the sea and in the air, the Russian defence ministry said on Saturday.
* Three senior U.S. security officials held a video call with a group of their Ukrainian counterparts to discuss military aid to Kyiv, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s chief of staff said.
* Ukrainian forces outside the battered eastern city of Bakhmut are managing to keep Russian units at bay so ammunition, food, equipment and medicines can be delivered to defenders, the army said on Saturday.
* Russia’s Wagner mercenary group plans to recruit approximately 30,000 new fighters by the middle of May, its founder Yevgeny Prigozhin said on Saturday.
* Reuters could not verify battleground reports.
Matt Mathers19 March 2023 11:00
* A deal allowing the safe Black Sea export of Ukrainian grain was renewed for at least 60 days – half the intended period – after Russia warned any further extension beyond mid-May would depend on the removal of some Western sanctions.
* Putin may not see the inside of a cell anytime soon, but his war crimes arrest warrant issued by the International Criminal Court could hurt his ability to travel freely and meet other world leaders, who may feel less inclined to speak to a wanted man.
* The ICC issued the warrant on Friday, accusing Putin of the war crime of illegally deporting hundreds of children from Ukraine. Moscow denies committing atrocities in the conflict and dismissed the warrant as outrageous, but meaningless for Russia.
Matt Mathers19 March 2023 10:23
Countries supplying Russia with weapons are ‘marginals in free world’ – Zelenksy
Countries that are supplying Russia with weapons can only be “marginals in the free world”, Volodymyr Zelenksy has said.
The Ukraine president made the comments in a video shared overnight on Twitter as fighting continued on the front line.
“All those who produce weapons for terror against Ukraine, who help Russia incite aggression, in particular by supplying Shahed drones, who support Russia’s destruction of international law, can only be marginals for the world”, he said.
Matt Mathers19 March 2023 09:41
ICYMI: ‘My life was in danger’- rail enthusiast flees Russia after photographing Putin’s armoured train
Trainspotter Mikhail Korotkov’s blog was his passion – but shutting up shop and leaving home felt like the only option after pictures he posted of his favourite target attracted some unwanted attention, finds Robyn Dixon.
Matt Mathers19 March 2023 09:20
Germany will arrest Putin if he enters country, says minister
Germany will have to arrest Russian president Vladimir Putin if he enters its territory and the International Criminal Court requires the contracting nation for enforcement, the country’s justice minister Marco Buschmann said today.
An arrest warrant for Mr Putin has been issued by the ICC in The Hague, which accuses him of war crimes by taking hundreds of Ukrainian children from orphanages.
The court accuses Mr Putin and his children’s rights commissioner, Maria Alekseyevna Lvova-Belova, of “unlawful deportation” of children “from occupied areas of Ukraine to the Russian Federation”.
Arpan Rai19 March 2023 08:57
Russia may find itself receiving an offer from China it cannot refuse
President Xi Jinping is an unlikely sort of peacemaker. His government has been responsible for unspeakable cruelties against the Muslim Uyghur people in Xinjiang region, the suppression of protest, the rule of law and democracy in Hong Kong, and the routine abuse of human rights across the entire people’s republic.
His armed forces have been buzzing and intimidating Taiwan for many years, as well as menacing neighbours in the South China Sea. Yet now the tyrannical supreme leader of China is going around the world brokering peace deals. It is a conundrum.
Mr Xi is in fact on something of a roll. Fresh from getting Saudi Arabia and Iran to restore diplomatic relations, and thus begin to end their pitiless proxy war in Yemen, he is off to Moscow next week to preach the ways of peace to Vladimir Putin, a tough customer.
Read The Independent’s Editorial here:
Arpan Rai19 March 2023 08:32
Putin seen driving Toyota car at night in Mariupol to visit locals
Vladimir Putin visited a family in their home In the Nevsky district of Mariupol during his visit to the Ukrainian city now under Russia’s control, Russian media reported.
The new residential neighbourhood has been built by Russian military with first people moving in last September.
Residents have been “actively” returning, Russia’s deputy prime minister Marat Khusnullin, who accompanied the leader, was cited as saying by Russian agencies.
Mariupol had a population of half a million people before the war and was home to the Azovstal steel plant, one of Europe’s largest.
“The downtown has been badly damaged,” the deputy PM said. “We want to finish (reconstruction) of the centre by the end of the year, at least the facade part. The centre is very beautiful.”
Russian media broadcast videos showing the Russian leader driving a car at night through a built-up area as well as walking into what media said was the philharmonic, restored in just three months.
There was also no immediate reaction to the visit from Kyiv.
Arpan Rai19 March 2023 08:03