The fight for what’s left of Bakhmut continues…
Ukraine President Zelensky vists Poland….
Finland joins NATO…..
US to begin traing Ukraine soliders on Abrams tanks…..
The tanks will be the last Westen countries tanks to deploy to the Ukraine…..
One might think that President Biden is hoping the tanks get to the Ukraine AFTER things are over….
French President Macron , in China, is pushing for support for a peace solution to the Ukraine conflict….
The Ukrainian president is meeting with his Polish counterpart and is expected to address the many Ukrainians living in Poland. Here is what we’re covering.
Zelensky visits Poland in hopes of shoring up public and official support.
Fighting is raging in the center of Bakhmut, a Ukrainian commander says.
Macron, in Beijing for meetings with Xi, speaks of a shared aim for peace.
Days into Russia’s U.N. Security Council presidency, Britain draws a line.
The journalist detained by Russia was reporting stories that ‘needed to be told.’….
French President Emmanuel Macron arrived in Beijing for a three-day visit, with Russia’s war in Ukraine on the agenda. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will join him for the talks, which come two weeks after Chinese leader Xi Jinping met with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
On his own diplomatic trip, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is in neighboring Poland on Wednesday, making his first wartime visit to a close ally that has helped rally political and military support for Kyiv. Warsaw has already sent four MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine and is in the process of handing over four more, Polish President Andrzej Duda said at a news conference during the visit, the Associated Press reported. Poland is preparing another six jets to send to Ukraine as well.
Here’s the latest on the war and its ripple effects across the globe.
- Blinken said the State Department was working “very deliberately but expeditiously” to conclude an assessment of whether Evan Gershkovich, a reporter assigned to the Wall Street Journal’s Moscow bureau, meets the criteria for the agency to officially declare his detention “wrongful,” a procedural step that would set in motion a government effort to secure his release. “In my own mind, there’s no doubt that he’s been wrongfully detained by Russia,” Blinken told reporters following a meeting of NATO foreign ministers in Brussels.
- Lawyers were able to visit Gershkovich nearly a week after he was detained in Russia, Wall Street Journal publisher Almar Latour said in a statement. U.S. Embassy representatives have not yet been granted access to the 31-year-old American, who is being held in Lefortovo prison in Moscow. Gershkovich could face 20 years in prison if convicted on espionage charges. The Journal vehemently denies the allegations against him, describing them as bogus; international media organizations have also called for the reporter’s release.
- Relations between Russia and the United States “are experiencing a deep crisis,” Putin told new ambassadors, including those from the United States and the European Union, at a credentialing ceremony at the Kremlin on Wednesday. “At its core are fundamentally different approaches to shaping the modern world order,” he added, suggesting that Washington was at fault for the war in Ukraine, which began with Russia’s invasion in February 2022. Putin told the diplomats his country, which is under Western sanctions, “is not going to isolate itself” and would “continue to act as one of the sovereign centers of world politics.”
- Zelensky met with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, and separately, Duda, who presented him with Poland’s highest award. Poland, the first NATO ally to send fighter jets to neighboring Ukraine, has taken in more than 1.5 million refugees from the war, according to U.N. data. At the news conference with Duda, Zelensky said Ukraine would “extend a hearty welcome” to Polish enterprises looking to help the country rebuild after the war, according to AP.
- Britain and the United States blocked broadcast of a United Nations Security Council meeting called by Russia for Wednesday morning to discuss its transfer of children from Ukraine. The International Criminal Court last month issued arrest warrants for Russian President Vladimir Putin and Maria Lvova-Belova, Russian commissioner for children’s rights, charging “unlawful deportation” of Ukrainian children. Russia has called the reports “propaganda” and has said children are being transported from war zones for their own safety. In a statement Wednesday, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said the United States would not allow Russia to “use their perch” in the rotating council chair this month “to share disinformation.”
- China can play a “major role” in finding an end to the war because of “its close relationship with Russia,” Macron said at the start of his visit to the country. European officials have suggested that diplomatic efforts could persuade China not to back the Kremlin. Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Putin during a visit to Moscow in March in a show of support.
- Finland’s accession to NATO brought celebration from Western allies and criticism from Russia. As Sweden awaits approval of its application to join the security alliance, the Nordic nation’s prime minister, Ulf Kristersson, congratulated Finland, writing that with its membership in NATO, “our part of the world becomes even safer, stronger and freer.”
- The United States pledged to boost Ukraine’s air defenses with an additional $2.6 billion in military aid. The latest package includes plans to send gun trucks and laser-guided weapons to counter drones.
- The Pentagon expects to begin training Ukrainian forces to use Abrams tanks “relatively soon,” according to a U.S. defense official. Since the war began last year, the United States has given military training to 7,000 members of the Ukrainian armed forces, the official said. The United States committed in January to providing 31 M1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, and Germany and other European nations also promised to send heavy tanks…..
A story about a Russian Putin Secret Police officer that defected….
Russian President Vladimir Putin is so terrified of being assassinated, he has installed identical offices in his residences around the nation to confuse his enemies, according to a high-ranking Kremlin defector.
Gleb Karakulov, 35, formerly an officer in Putin’s elite personal security service, fled Russia via Turkey in October with his wife and daughter because he said he is morally opposed to the invasion of Ukraine and the ongoing war that has cost thousands of lives on both sides.
Six months after his dramatic escape, Karakulov — who was in charge of the Russian leader’s secure communications as part of the shadowy Federal Protective Service — is sharing intimate details of the private life of his former boss, whom he now openly calls a “war criminal.”
In bombshells interviews with the Associated Press and the anti-Kremlin investigative unit the Dossier Center, Karakulov shed light on Putin’s elaborate arrangements aimed at keeping him safe, including setting up the replicas of his Kremlin office in multiple locations throughout Russia, with matching details down to the desk and wall hangings….
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