Russia Strikes Ukraine as Zelensky Reduces Conscription Age: Live Updates on the Ongoing Conflict

Russia Strikes Ukraine as Zelensky Reduces Conscription Age: Live Updates on the Ongoing Conflict
Ukrainian MP reveals how Britain can help country win Russia war

Russia is preparing to launch a “big attack” this summer that could plummet Ukraine into crisis, high-ranking Ukrainian military officers have warned.

The officers who served under General Valery Zaluzhny, Ukraine’s former commander-in-chief of armed forces, said Russia is gathering resources and is likely to “launch a big attack around August” but warned it could be sooner.

One of the military sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told POLITICO: “There’s nothing that can help Ukraine now because there are no serious technologies able to compensate Ukraine for the large mass of troops Russia is likely to hurl at us.”

The warning comes as Volodymyr Zelensky lowered the minimum age for Ukraine’s military draft from 27 to 25 in a move that analysts said would provide a significant boost to recruitment.

“Lowering the mobilisation age is one of many measures that Ukraine has been considering in an ongoing effort to create a sustainable wartime force-generation apparatus,” the Washington-based Institute for the Study of War said.

Ukraine will now need an injection of new weaponry and equipment to kit out its newly mobilised personnel, the ISW added, pointing to the backdrop of delayed Western aid that could render the Zelensky administration’s move ineffective.

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Zelensky finally calls for younger soldiers in bid to plug shortfall in troops

The new mobilization law, from 27 to 25 , came into force a day after Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy signed it. Ukraine’s parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, passed it last year.

It was not immediately clear why Zelenskyy took so long to sign the measure into law. He didn’t make any public comment about it, and officials did not say how many new soldiers the country expected to gain or for which units.

Tom Watling3 April 2024 16:39

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Nato countries to start planning new Ukraine aid structures, Stoltenberg says

Nato countries have not yet taken a decision on the structure of future aid for Ukraine, but agreed on Wednesday to move forward with planning on the matter, Nato’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has said.

“Today we didn’t take any final decisions on what format we will establish, but we agreed to initiate planning,” Mr Stoltenberg told reporters after a meeting of Nato foreign ministers.

The ministers met to discuss how to put military support for Ukraine on a long-term footing, including a proposal for a 100 billion euro ($107 billion) five-year fund and a plan seen as a way to “Trump-proof” aid for Kyiv.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg look on as they stand for a group photo on the day of a Nato foreign ministers meeting

(REUTERS)

Tom Watling3 April 2024 16:11

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Russia says new South Korean sanctions are ‘unfriendly’ and vows to respond

Russia considers South Korea’s decision to impose sanctions against Russian individuals and entities as an “unfriendly” move and will respond in due course, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Wednesday.

South Korea has imposed sanctions against two Russian vessels which it says were carrying military cargo to North Korea. Seoul said on Tuesday it had also sanctioned two Russian organisations and two Russian citizens linked to Pyongyang’s nuclear and missile programmes.

“This is an unfriendly move by Seoul and is deeply regrettable. The imposition of – I emphasise – illegitimate sanctions will have a negative impact on relations with Russia,” Zakharova told reporters at her weekly briefing.

“Russia is developing good neighbourly ties with friendly North Korea in accordance with the norms of international law, without harming the national security of (South Korea),” she added.

Ties between Moscow and Pyongyang have strengthened following North Korean leader Kim Jong Un’s visit to Russia‘s far east last year.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain3 April 2024 15:30

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Court orders a detained Russia-US journalist to remain in custody for two more months

A court in Russia on Monday ordered a detained Russian-American journalist to be held in jail for two more months pending investigation and trial, in a further step in the Kremlin’s crackdown on dissent and free speech.

Alsu Kurmasheva, an editor for the U.S. government-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty’s Tatar-Bashkir service, was taken into custody on Oct. 18 and charged with failing to register as a foreign agent while collecting information about the Russian military. Later, she was also charged with spreading “false information” about the Russian military.

A court in Tatarstan Monday ordered her to remain behind bars at least until June 5.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain3 April 2024 15:00

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Moscow preparing to launch a ‘big attack’ this summer, Ukrainian military officers warn

Russia is preparing to launch a “big attack” this summer that could plummet Ukraine into crisis, high-ranking Ukrainian military officers have warned.

The officers who served under General Valery Zaluzhny, Ukraine’s former commander-in-chief of armed forces, told POLITICO that Russia is gathering resources and is likely to “launch a big attack around August” but warned it could be sooner.

One of the military sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said: “There’s nothing that can help Ukraine now because there are no serious technologies able to compensate Ukraine for the large mass of troops Russia is likely to hurl at us.

“We don’t have those technologies, and the West doesn’t have them as well in sufficient numbers.”

Maryam Zakir-Hussain3 April 2024 14:27

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NATO weighs a plan to provide long-term military help to Ukraine as Russian troops assert control

NATO is debating a plan to provide more predictable military support to Ukraine in coming years as better armed Russian troops assert control on the battlefield, the organization’s top civilian official said Wednesday.

“We strongly believe that support to Ukraine should be less dependent on short-term, voluntary offers and more dependent on long-term NATO commitments,” NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said before chairing a meeting of the alliance’s foreign ministers in Brussels.

Earlier on Wednesday, Ukraine lowered the military conscription age from 27 to 25 to help replenish its depleted ranks after more than two years of war. A shortage of infantry combined with a severe ammunition shortfall has helped hand Russian troops the initiative.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain3 April 2024 14:03

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NATO has returned to ‘Cold War mindset’ as it marks 75th anniversary, Russia says

Russia said that NATO had returned to a Cold War mindset as the alliance marks its 75th anniversary this week.

“Today, in relations with Russia, the bloc has returned to Cold War settings,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told reporters.

She said NATO has no place in the “multipolar world” that Moscow says it seeks to build in order to end U.S. dominance, but that it remains the focus of Russian attention.

President Vladimir Putin launched what he called his “special military operation” in Ukraine in 2022 with the stated aim of preventing NATO from expanding its footprint close to Russia. But the war has served to galvanise the alliance, which has expanded to 32 members by admitting Finland and Sweden.

NATO foreign ministers were meeting in Brussels on Wednesday to discuss proposals that would give the alliance a more direct role in coordinating the supply of arms, ammunition and equipment to Ukraine.

Western governments say they are helping Ukraine fight for its survival in the face of Russia‘s invasion. Zakharova said NATO’s history was “full of aggressive adventures that brought wars and destruction to many nations”, and its anniversary was no cause for celebration.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain3 April 2024 13:32

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Putin vows to find the masterminds of the Moscow concert hall attack and urges tighter security

Russian President Vladimir Putin vowed Tuesday to track down the masterminds of the Moscow concert hall attack that left 144 people dead in the worst assault on Russian soil in two decades, and urged the country’s law enforcement agencies to tighten security at mass gatherings.

Putin has repeatedly sought to link the March 22 attack to Ukraine and the West despite the Islamic State group’s claim of responsibility and Kyiv‘s vehement denial.

Speaking at a meeting with top officials of the Interior Ministry that oversees the nation’s police force, Putin said it is important to determine “not only the perpetrators of this outrage, but all links in the chain and its beneficiaries.”

Maryam Zakir-Hussain3 April 2024 13:01

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Japan’s support for Ukraine is unwavering, PM Kishida tells Zelensky

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said his country’s support for Ukraine was unwavering during a phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Wednesday, the foreign ministry in Tokyo said.

Zelensky said in a post on X he briefed Kishida on the battlefield situation and emphasized the need to step up sanction pressure on Russia and create a mechanism for confiscating frozen Russian assets.

“Prime Minister Kishida said he would like to express heartfelt respect for the courage of President Zelensky and the people of Ukraine, and that Japan will not waver in its position of standing together with Ukraine,” the ministry said in a statement.

(AP)

Maryam Zakir-Hussain3 April 2024 12:35

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‘Building destroyers’: The Russian glide bombs changing the face of the war on Ukraine’s eastern front

Winged explosives weighing up to 1,500 kilograms – and nicknamed the ‘building destroyer’ – have had a devastating impact wherever they have been used, writes Tom Watling. Kyiv is battling them as best it can but needs Western allies to step up and provide more weapons, air defences and ammunition:

In a Ukrainian stronghold near the front line, less than 20 miles from the eastern city of Donetsk, a winged bomb is seen hurtling towards a multistorey building.

The 1,500-kilogram explosive hits the structure in the town of Krasnohorivka, erupting into a fireball before engulfing the whole building in a plume of grey and black smoke.

The camera, filming from several hundred metres away, shakes as the ground beneath it rocks from the aftereffects of the explosion.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain3 April 2024 12:10

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