Russia-Ukraine War Latest Updates: Ukraine's security chief said on Friday that the main battles in the country are taking place in the Donbas, the industrial heartland in the east, with Russia deploying more and more troops every day. Meanwhile, the United States will convene a meeting next week in Germany of defence officials and military leaders from more than 20 countries to discuss Ukraine's immediate and long-term defence needs. The Russian Defence Ministry said Friday that one serviceman died, 27 more went missing and 396 were rescued after a fire on the flagship missile cruiser Moskva last week.
Ukraine's security chief said on Friday that the main battles in the country are taking place in the Donbas, the industrial heartland in the east, with Russia deploying more and more troops every day. Meanwhile, the United States will convene a meeting next week in Germany of defence officials and military leaders from more than 20 countries to discuss Ukraine's immediate and long-term defence needs.
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The Russian Defence Ministry said Friday that one serviceman died, 27 more went missing and 396 were rescued after a fire on the flagship missile cruiser Moskva last week.
Follow all the latest updates from the Russia-Ukraine War here:
Russian shelling kills 2 in Popasna
Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai says that two people were killed by Russian shelling in the city of Popasna. Haidai said Saturday on the messaging app Telegram that residential buildings in the region were shelled 12 times the previous day, and Popasna got the most of it.
In addition to the fact that street fighting continues in the city for several weeks, the Russian army constantly fires at multistory residential buildings and private houses. Just yesterday, local residents withstood five enemy artillery attacks. Not all survived, Haidai wrote. He added that some houses were also destroyed in Lysychansk and Novodruzhesk.
G20 cannot function with Russia at the table, Canada says
The Group of 20 major economies cannot effectively function as long as Russia remains a member, Canada's finance minister said on Friday after a week of protests of Moscow's war in Ukraine at the International Monetary Fund and World Bank meetings in Washington.
Discord over Russia's presence at the meetings has been on display all week, with officials from the U.S., Canada, Britain and other Western countries staging walkouts three days in a row whenever Russian officials spoke.
The G20 finance ministers and central bank governors, who met in Washington on Wednesday, failed to agree on its traditional communique outlining economic policy goals as Russia blocked strong language condemning its invasion of Ukraine.
The IMF steering committee and the World Bank-IMF Development Committee also failed to issue joint statements.
"The G20 can't function effectively with Russia at the table," Chrystia Freeland, Canadian minister of finance, told a news conference with Ukrainian Finance Minister Serhiy Marchenko in Washington.
"Russia does not have a place at the table of countries who have come together to maintain global economic prosperity," Freeland said, adding Russia has violated longstanding international rules with its invasion of southern Ukraine. "You can't be a poacher and gamekeeper at the same time."
The tensions have called into question the effectiveness of the G20, which includes Western countries that have accused Moscow of war crimes in Ukraine, as well as China, India, Indonesia and South Africa, which have not joined Western-led sanctions against Russia over the conflict.
UN chief to meet Putin and Zelenskyy next week
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will visit Moscow next week to meet Russia's President Vladimir Putin and then head to Ukraine for talks with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
Guterres will head to Moscow on Tuesday and meet Putin as well as having a working meeting and lunch with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, Eri Kaneko, Guterres' associate spokesperson, told a news briefing in New York on Friday.
"He hopes to talk about what can be done to bring peace to Ukraine urgently," Kaneko said.
He will meet with Zelenskyy on Thursday, foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba and staff at UN agencies to discuss the scaling up of humanitarian assistance efforts, the UN spokesperson’s office said in a statement.
Zelenskyy warns Russia is eyeing other countries after Ukraine
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy warned that Russia's invasion of his country was just the beginning and that Moscow has designs on capturing other countries, after a Russian general said it wants full control over southern Ukraine.
"All the nations that, like us, believe in the victory of life over death must fight with us. They must help us, because we are the first in line. And who will come next?" Zelenskyy said in a video address late on Friday.
Rustam Minnekayev, deputy commander of Russia's central military district, was quoted by Russian state news agencies as saying full control over southern Ukraine would give it access to Transnistria, a breakaway Russian-occupied part of Moldova in the west.
That would cut off Ukraine's entire coastline and mean Russian forces pushing hundreds of miles west beyond current lines, past the major Ukrainian coastal cities of Mykolaiv and Odesa.
The statement was one of the most detailed about Moscow's ambitions in Ukraine and suggests Russia does not plan to wind down its offensive there anytime soon.
Ukraine says Russia moving elite units east
Ukraine's security chief said Friday that the main battles in the country are taking place in the Donbas, the industrial heartland in the east, with Russia deploying more and more troops every day. Oleksiy Danilov, the secretary of Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council, told The Associated Press that over 100,000 Russian troops are currently fighting in Ukraine, including mercenaries from Syria and Libya.
Some of Russia's elite military units have left the strategic Ukrainian port city of Mariupol, which was declared liberated by the Kremlin on Thursday, and are now moving to the east of the country to participate in the fighting there, Danilov said. Danilov said a nighttime helicopter delivery brought weapons to Mariupol's steel mill, the last stronghold of Ukrainian forces in the city. He urged Ukraine's Western partners to speed up the delivery of weapons to his country.
Russia: 1 dead, 27 missing from Moskva ship
The Russian Defence Ministry said Friday that one serviceman died, 27 more went missing and 396 were rescued after a fire on the flagship missile cruiser Moskva last week. The statement comes a week after the vessel sunk.
Shortly after the incident, the ministry said the entire crew of the ship, which was presumed by the media to be about 500 people, had been rescued. The ministry did not offer an explanation for the contradicting reports. Ukraine said it hit the cruiser with a missile strike.
US convening talks on Ukraine's defence needs
The Pentagon says US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will convene a meeting next week in Germany of defence officials and military leaders from more than 20 countries to discuss Ukraine's immediate and long-term defence needs. The Pentagon press secretary, John Kirby, said Friday that about 40 nations, including NATO members, were invited and that responses are still arriving for the session to be held Tuesday at Ramstein air base. He did not identify the nations that have agreed to attend but said more details will be provided in coming days.
The meeting comes as Russia gears up for what is expected to be a major offensive in eastern Ukraine. The agenda will include an updated assessment of the Ukraine battlefield as well as discussion of efforts to continue a steady flow of weapons and other military aid, Kirby said.
It will include consultations on Ukraine's post-war defense needs but is not expected to consider changes in the US military posture in Europe, he said.
Mariupol officials: Second mass grave found
Another mass grave has been found outside Mariupol, the city council and an adviser to the mayor said Friday. The city council posted a satellite photo provided by Planet Labs showing what it said was a mass grave 45 metres by 25 metres that could hold the bodies of at least 1,000 Mariupol residents.
It said the new reported mass grave is outside the village of Vynohradne, which is east of Mariupol. Earlier this week, satellite photos from Maxar Technologies revealed what appeared to be rows upon rows of more than 200 freshly dug mass graves in the town of Manhush, located to the west of Mariupol.
The discovery of mass graves has led to accusations that the Russians are trying to conceal the slaughter of civilians in the city.
First Published: Apr 23, 2022 8:45 AM IST
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