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Russia to open several humanitarian corridors in Ukraine

Russian troops have surrounded Ukrainian towns with missiles and attempts to evacuate civilians from several areas continue as Russia’s war against Ukraine enters its 12th day.

This will be the third attempt to evacuate civilians from besieged Ukrainian cities. (AP)

Monday, March 7, 2022

Russia to open humanitarian corridors

The Russian army is expected to hold fire and open humanitarian corridors in several Ukrainian cities, including the capital Kiev, at 07:00 GMT (10:00 Moscow time), the Interfax news agency said citing the Russian Defense Ministry.

The corridors, which will also be open from the cities of Kharkiv, Mariupol and Sumy, are set up at the personal request of French President Emmanuel Macron and taking into account the current situation in these cities, he said.

Those leaving Kyiv will be flown to Russia, the ministry said, adding that it would use drones to monitor the evacuation and that “the Ukrainian side’s attempts to deceive Russia and the whole civilized world. .. are useless this time”.

West calls for Russia’s suspension from Interpol

Several Western countries have asked Interpol to suspend Russia from the international law enforcement body, according to British Home Secretary Priti Patel.

The United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand called for “the immediate suspension of Russia’s access to its systems” and asked the Interpol executive committee to take a decision this week, Patel tweeted.

“Russia’s actions are a direct threat to the safety of individuals and to international law enforcement cooperation,” Patel added.

Australia: The war in Ukraine is a “choice moment for China”

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has called Russia’s invasion of Ukraine “a defining moment for China”, urging Beijing to end its tacit political and economic support for the war.

Morrison urged China to shape the actions of its Russian ally and prove that Beijing is committed to world peace and the principle of sovereignty, saying “no country would have a bigger impact right now.”

“The current crisis gripping Europe heralds a defining moment for China,” Morrison told the Lowy Institute, a Sydney-based foreign policy think tank.

China says most of its citizens have been evacuated from Ukraine

Beijing’s embassy in Ukraine announced that most of the roughly 6,000 Chinese nationals previously in the country had been evacuated.

“At present, most Chinese compatriots in Ukraine have already been evacuated,” the embassy said in a social media statement that urged remaining citizens to evacuate as well, saying “the tense situation in Ukraine continues to deteriorate.”

Netflix and TikTok block services in Russia to avoid crackdown

Netflix and TikTok have suspended most of their services in Russia as the government cracks down on what people and the media can say about Russia’s war in Ukraine.

“In light of Russia’s new ‘fake news’ law, we have no choice but to suspend live streaming and new content from our video service while we consider the implications of this law for Our in-app messaging service will not be affected,” TikTok said on Twitter.

Netflix cited “on-the-ground circumstances” for its decision to suspend its Russian service but did not provide further details.

Ukraine says its forces killed 40 Russian soldiers in Lugansk

Ukraine claimed its forces killed 40 Russian soldiers and destroyed 11 military vehicles in the Luhansk region.

He said that the Russian army continues its offensive operation against Ukraine, concentrating its main efforts on the siege of the cities of Kiev, Kharkiv, Chernihiv, Sumy and Mykolaiv, reaching the administrative borders in the regions of Luhansk and Donetsk.

The statement added that Russian forces have started to regroup to attack the capital Kiev.

South Korea to scrap transactions with Russian central bank

South Korea has tightened its financial sanctions against Russia by banning transactions with the Russian central bank.

South Korea’s foreign ministry said it had decided to freeze all assets held by the Russian central bank in won and cut off transactions with the Russian central bank, following similar moves by states. United and European Union.

The new criminal sanctions against Russia follow Seoul’s March 1 decision to ban transactions with seven major Russian banks and their subsidiaries, including Sberbank.

German ministers warn against boycotting Russian oil

German finance and foreign ministers have warned against banning Russian energy imports as the West looks for ways to tighten the screws on Moscow following its invasion of Ukraine.

Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said Germany was ready “to pay a very, very high economic price” but “if tomorrow in Germany or Europe the lights go out, that won’t stop the tanks”, suggesting that the sanctions could not be sustained in the long term.

German Finance Minister Christian Lindner was also skeptical of an oil ban. “We must not limit our ability to support ourselves,” he told the Bild newspaper.

New Zealand extends sanctions against Russia

The New Zealand government is about to introduce legislation allowing it to impose sanctions on Russia following its invasion of Ukraine. It will be the first time that New Zealand has imposed sanctions individually on a country.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the sanctions would give the country the ability to freeze Russian assets in New Zealand.

It would prevent people and businesses from moving their money and assets here to escape sanctions imposed by other countries, and prevent super yachts, ships and planes from entering the country’s waters or airspace. .

Russia would have recruited Syrians for the war in Ukraine

Russia is recruiting Syrian fighters experienced in urban combat as it steps up its assault on Ukraine, according to US officials quoted by The Wall Street Journal.

Moscow, which launched an invasion of its eastern European neighbor on February 24, recently recruited fighters from Syria in hopes they could help take Kiev, four US officials told the US daily.

Russia entered the Syrian civil war in 2015 on the side of regime leader Bashar al Assad. The country has been mired in a conflict marked by urban fighting for more than a decade.

An official told the Journal that some fighters were already in Russia and preparing to join the fight in Ukraine, although the number of fighters recruited was not immediately clear, and the sources did not provide further details. .

Foreign fighters have already entered the Ukrainian conflict from both sides.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba claimed that around 20,000 foreign fighters from more than 50 countries have traveled to the country to join Kiev’s forces.

US Congress to ‘explore’ ban on Russian oil and enact $10 billion in aid to Ukraine this week

U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said the chamber was “exploring” legislation banning the import of Russian oil and that Congress intended to enact $10 billion in aid this week. dollars to Ukraine in response to the Russian military invasion of its neighbour.

“The House is currently considering strong legislation that will further isolate Russia from the global economy,” Pelosi said in a letter.

“Our bill would ban the import of Russian petroleum and energy products into the United States, abrogate normal trade relations with Russia and Belarus, and be the first step in denying Russia access to the World Trade Organization. trade.”

Ukraine and Russia to face off in World Court over genocide charges

Ukraine will ask the United Nations’ highest court for an emergency ruling demanding that Russia halt its invasion, arguing that Moscow’s justification for the attack is based on a misinterpretation of genocide law.

Although the Court’s decisions are binding and countries generally follow them, it has no direct means of enforcing them.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russia’s “special military action” was needed “to protect people who have been victims of intimidation and genocide” –– that is, those whose first or the only language is Russian –– in eastern Ukraine.

Ukraine’s lawsuit argues that the genocide allegation is false and, in any event, does not provide legal justification for the invasion.

The case he filed with the World Court, officially known as the International Court of Justice (ICJ), concerns the interpretation of a 1948 treaty on the prevention of genocide, signed by the two countries. The treaty names the ICJ as the body for the settlement of disputes between the signatories.

Last week, the board of directors of the International Association of Genocide Scholars issued a statement claiming that Putin was “hijacking and misusing the term ‘genocide’”.

“There is absolutely no evidence that there is a genocide in Ukraine,” association president Melanie O’Brien told Reuters news agency.

The Russian Embassy in The Hague did not immediately respond to questions from Reuters about the case.

The ICJ can order expedited “provisional measures” within days or weeks to prevent a situation from escalating before considering the merits of a case or if it has jurisdiction.

Ukraine asked the court for interim measures in 2014 after Russia annexed Crimea, and the ICJ ordered the two sides not to escalate the dispute.

Hearings begin at 10 a.m. (0900 GMT) with Ukraine presenting its case.

Russia is due to respond on Tuesday.

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Source: TRTWorld and agencies