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Ukraine-Russia war live: Press Putin to end war, Germany urges China’s Xi Jinping

German chancellor says he told president Xi that China’s word carries ‘weight’ in Russia

Arpan Rai,Matt Mathers
Wednesday 17 April 2024 09:38 BST
UK has fasttracked the production of laser energy and radio waves weaponry

German chancellor Olaf Scholz said he urged Chinese president Xi Jinping to press Russia to end its war in Ukraine.

Mr Scholz told Mr Xi in a meeting in Beijing on Tuesday that China’s word carries “weight in Russia.”

“I have therefore asked president Xi to influence Russia so that Putin finally calls off his senseless campaign, withdraw his troops and ends this terrible war,” he wrote on social media platform X.

Earlier, a Russian source said Moscow was ready to redeploy Wagner troops working in Africa to bolster its offensive in Ukraine.

The source claimed Russian authorities are preparing to redeploy unspecified detachments of the Africa Corps from Africa to Belgorod, Ukraine, according to US think tank Institute for the Study of War.


The USA will continue to support Ukraine, says secretary of state

The US secretary of state has assured Ukraine and its allies surrounding the Black Sea they could depend on his country’s support to make the region more secure.

Anthony Blinken emphasised the importance of investing in the region’s security to ensure peace and freedom across Europe.

Addressing the attendees of the Second Black Sea Security Conference in Sofia, Bulgaria, he said: “Putin believed that Ukraine’s neighbours in the region would be divided, but he was wrong.

“The United States will continue to support Ukraine both so it can defend itself today and stand on its feet.”

Russia illegally annexed the Crimean Peninsula, on the northern coast of the Black Sea, in 2014, and it has served as a key hub supporting the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Russia, Turkey, and Ukraine border the Black Sea.

Holly Evans16 April 2024 06:30

Ukraine says it downs all nine Russian drones overnight

Ukraine’s air defence systems destroyed all nine drones launched in a Russian attack, the air force said today.

The aerial weapons were destroyed over several eastern and southern regions, Ukraine’s air force said on the Telegram channel.

Arpan Rai16 April 2024 07:07

Ukraine Russia trade blames over attacks on Zaporizhzhia

Ukraine and its allies again blamed Russia for dangers at the site of Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant on Monday, with the US saying, “Russia does not care about these risks” amid reports of attack on the facility.

“If it did, it would not continue to forcibly control the plant,” US deputy ambassador Robert Wood told the Security Council.

Russia, for its part, said Ukraine was to blame for the attacks.

“The IAEA’s report does not pinpoint which side is behind the attacks,” Russia’s UN ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said. “We know full well who it is.”

“Over the last few months, such attacks not only resumed,” the official said, “they significantly intensified.”

Zaporizhzhia sits in Russian-controlled territory in southeastern Ukraine and has six nuclear reactors.

Fears of a nuclear catastrophe have been at the forefront since Russian troops occupied the plant shortly after invading in February 2022.

Continued fighting between Russian and Ukrainian forces — as well as the tense supply situation at the plant — have raised the specter of a disaster.

Arpan Rai16 April 2024 07:37

House Speaker Mike Johnson pushes towards a vote on aid for Israel, Ukraine and Taiwan

The House has yet to take up supplemental funding legislation for Israel and Ukraine passed by the Senate in February.

Instead, Speaker Mike Johnson told Republicans at their conference meeting on Monday that he would split the legislation into multiple parts, allowing both the portions dealing with Israel and Ukraine’s militaries to stand alone.

MrJohnson is pushing toward action this week on aid for Israel, Ukraine and Taiwan, unveiling an elaborate plan yesterday to break the package into separate votes to squeeze through the House’s political divides on foreign policy. Facing an outright rebellion from conservatives fiercely opposed to aiding Ukraine, the Republican speaker’s move on the foreign aid package was a potentially watershed moment, the first significant action on the bill after more than two months of delay. But Johnson’s intention to hold four separate votes on parts of the package also left it open to being significantly altered from the $95bn aid package the Senate passed in February. It’s unclear if the House could end up with a package that is similar to the Senate’s bill or something significantly different, which could complicate the months-long, painstaking effort to get Congress to approve military funding for Ukraine. “We will let the House work its will,” Johnson told reporters.

Arpan Rai16 April 2024 08:00

Ukraine says it downs all nine drones launched by Russia

Ukraine’s air defence systems destroyed all nine drones launched in a Russian attack, the air force said on Tuesday.

The aerial weapons were destroyed over several eastern and southern regions, Ukraine’s air force said on the Telegram messaging app.

Matt Mathers16 April 2024 08:05

ICYMI: Ukraine uses UK Storm Shadow missile to hit target deep in occupied territory

Ukraine used British-made Storm Shadow cruise missiles to hit a Russian military headquarters deep inside the occupied city of Luhansk in country’s east.

A military source told Sky News the missile was launched from a Ukrainian aircraft and hit a command base for Russian ground troops on Saturday.

“This strike furthers Ukraine’s campaign to liberate the Luhansk region from the Russian Federation’s illegal invasion and ensure that Russia is not able to advance further into Ukraine,” the source said.

Matt Mathers16 April 2024 08:29

Ukraine man’s torture case against Russians seeks justice in Argentina

A Ukrainian man who alleges he was tortured by Russian occupying forces has filed a legal complaint halfway around the world in Argentina, an unusual bid to seek accountability for alleged war crimes at a time when prosecutors in Kyiv are overwhelmed.

In the filing, reported for the first time, the man accuses one named person, two identified by their call signs or military insignia, and others who are unnamed of using electrocution and unlawful imprisonment as forms of torture in mid to late 2022, the complaint seen by Reuters shows.

The man, who asked not to be identified by Reuters because of fears for his family who are still in Russian-occupied parts of Ukraine, filed the complaint with the Federal Court in Buenos Aires on Monday against the people who he says tortured him, the officials who ran the detention center in southern Ukraine where he says he was held, and his superior at work who he accuses of facilitating the abuse.

"I was detained at work. Then they tortured me. They used electric shocks," he told Reuters in an interview in a Buenos Aires apartment ahead of the filing.

"It was incredibly painful, so I lost consciousness. I was lucky to survive. Many people are still there."

Reuters was unable to independently confirm specifics of the victim’s account.

The Russian defense ministry on Monday declined to comment. Moscow denies committing war crimes in Ukraine and has dismissed previous International Criminal Court war crimes arrest warrants as part of a biased Western campaign to discredit Russia.

Matt Mathers16 April 2024 08:45

ICYMI: More civilians die in Ukraine as a think tank warns delays in US aid will hamper Kyiv's forces

More civilians died across Ukraine Sunday as analysts warned that delays in U.S. military assistance would see Kyiv struggle to fight off Russian offensives.

One man was Sunday killed after a Russian drone hit the truck he was driving in the Sumy region, the local prosecutor’s office said.

Full report:

More civilians die in Ukraine as a think tank warns delays in US aid will hamper Kyiv's forces

More civilians have died across Ukraine as analysts warn that delays in U.S. aid would see Kyiv struggle to fight off Russian offensives

Matt Mathers16 April 2024 08:54

In pictures: Nato’s operation Steadfast Defender 24

Pictures posted by Britain’s Ministry of Defence show troops taking part in Nato’s operation Steadfast Defender 24.

Steadfast Defender 24 is Nato’s largest military exercise since the Cold War, involving 90,000 troops from all 32 allies.

The operation takes place from January to May 2024 and aims to demonstrate “Nato’s ability to defend every inch of its territory, and the commitment by Nato allies to protect each other from any threat.”

Matt Mathers16 April 2024 09:05

ICYMI: House passes legislation to punish Iran after weekend drone attack on Israel

The House of Representatives passed a series of Iran-related bills on Monday evening with wide bipartisan support, a response to the attack on Saturday evening by Iranian forces against targets in Israel.

Among the legislation passed on Monday were bills aimed at expanding sanctions over Chinese firms that do business with Iran’s petroleum sector and provisions to direct US representatives at the IMF to oppose financial assistance to Iran. Another bill directed the president to submit reports to Congress on Iranian holdings and assets in the United States financial system.

Full report:

House passes legislation to punish Iran after weekend drone attack on Israel

Chamber is expected to take up Israel and Ukraine legislation this week

Matt Mathers16 April 2024 09:15

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