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Russia Ukraine war latest news: US drops ban on arming Azov Brigade to help fight Putin’s forces

Russia Ukraine war latest news: US drops ban on arming Azov Brigade to help fight Putin’s forces


Zelensky says China trying to undermine Ukraine peace summit

The United States had dropped a ban on arming a controversial Ukrainian fighting unit which has been criticised for recruiting fighters from far-right circles.

The Azov Brigade is among Ukraine’s most effective and popular fighting units, formerly based in Mariupol, has also been called out for some of its fighting tactics.

It has rejected accusations of extremism and any ties with far-right movements, and Washington said it had found “no evidence” of human rights violations.

“This is a new page in our unit’s history,” the brigade said. “Azov is becoming even more powerful, even more professional and even more dangerous for occupiers.”

It comes as Finland said a Russian military plane had breached Nato airspace by flying at least 2.5km inside Finnish territory.

Russia confirmed that it had multiple bombers and missile carriers operating in the Baltic region but did not specifically comment on the alleged airspace breach.

Meanwhile, Russian and Belarusian troops have started the second stage of tactical nuclear drills, Russia’s defence ministry has said.

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Russian hybrid operations very concerning, say Romania, Poland and Latvia

Russia’s malign hybrid activities in Nato countries are a source of deep concern, the presidents of Romania, Poland and Latvia said on Tuesday in a statement released to coincide with a meeting of eastern members of the alliance.

Countries on Nato’s eastern flank say that Russia is using tactics ranging from sabotage and cyberattacks to illegal migration to destabilise them due to their support for Ukraine.

Russia has repeatedly denied accusations that it is behind such activities. “We are deeply concerned about Russia’s recent malignant hybrid activities on Allied territory, which constitute a threat to Allied security,” the presidents said in the statement.

Alexander Butler11 June 2024 15:04

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US drops ban on controversial Ukrainian brigade

The United States had dropped a ban on arming a controversial Ukrainian fighting unit which has been criticised for recruiting fighters from far-right circles.

The Azov Brigade is among Ukraine’s most effective and popular fighting units, formerly based in Mariupol, has also been called out for some of its fighting tactics.

It has rejected accusations of extremism and any ties with far-right movements, and the US said it had found “no evidence” of human rights violations.

“This is a new page in our unit’s history,” the brigade said. “Azov is becoming even more powerful, even more professional and even more dangerous for occupiers.”

Alexander Butler11 June 2024 14:18

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Russia says West may force it to amend nuclear doctrine

The actions of the West are making Russia think about amending its nuclear deterrence framework, the TASS news agency cited deputy foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov as saying on Tuesday.

Russian president Vladimir Putin spoke about Russia’s nuclear doctrine last week, saying that it was a “living instrument” which could be changed. On Tuesday, Ryabkov declined to say what exactly could change in the documents.

Alexander Butler11 June 2024 13:15

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Russia destroyed half of Ukraine’s power generation capacity, says Zelensky

Russian strikes on Ukraine’s energy facilities have destroyed half of its electricity generation capacity since winter, Volodymyr Zelensky said on Tuesday.

“As a result of the strikes of Russian missiles and drones, nine gigawatts of capacity have already been destroyed. The peak of electricity consumption last winter was 18 gigawatts. So half now doesn’t exist,” Mr Zelensky told a conference in Berlin.

Alexander Butler11 June 2024 12:45

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Russian fighter-bomber crashes after ‘technical fault’

A Russian military jet crashed during a training flight in North Ossetia, killing two people on board, the defence ministry said Tuesday.

The Sukhoi SU-34 jet crashed “in a mountainous zone” and there was “no damage on the ground”, the ministry said, adding that a technical problem appeared to have caused the crash.

It comes amid an increase in aircraft accidents in Russia, attributed to sanctions imposed on Russia leading to a shortage of necessary parts.

File photo of Russian Su-34 jet
File photo of Russian Su-34 jet (AFP via Getty Images)

Alexander Butler11 June 2024 12:15

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Russian forces capture two villages in Ukraine

Russian forces have captured the village of Miasozharivka in Ukraine’s Luhansk region and the village of Tymkivka in the Kharkiv region, the TASS news agency cited Russia’s defence ministry as saying.

Alexander Butler11 June 2024 11:33

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Russia and Belarus start second stage of tactical nuclear drills

Russian and Belarusian troops have started the second stage of tactical nuclear drills in Russia, Russia’s defence ministry has said.

The ministry said the drills were aimed at ensuring that the two countries’ military personnel and equipment were ready to protect their sovereignty and territorial integrity.

“During the exercise, issues of joint training of units of the armed forces of the Russian Federation and the Republic of Belarus for the combat use of non-strategic nuclear weapons will be worked out,” the defence ministry said.

Alexander Butler11 June 2024 11:19

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At Nato allies summit, Latvia touts coordinated Ukraine approach, without Hungary

Nato’s eastern flank leaders will have a more coordinated approach towards supporting Ukraine after the Hungarian president stayed away from their summit in Riga, Latvian President Edgars Rinkevics said.

The split emphasises diverging approaches to Russia and Ukraine among central European nations, amid Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orban’s continued close ties to Russia and refusal to give arms to Ukraine.

Rinkevics said Hungary’s President Tamas Sulyok cancelled his trip to the summit of the Bucharest Nine, a group of European countries on the eastern edge of Nato, at the weekend.

Alexander Butler11 June 2024 10:59

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China says it will oppose all unilateral sanctions

China will resolutely oppose all unilateral sanctions following new warnings from G7 countries on small Chinese banks about their links to Russia, the Chinese foreign ministry said on Tuesday.

China will take all necessary measures to firmly safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese enterprises, spokesperson Lin Jin said at a regular press conference.

It was reported yesteday that member countries of the G7 were set to send a tough new warning next week to smaller Chinese banks to stop assisting Russia in evading Western sanctions.

Leaders are gathering for the summit on June 13-15.

Alex Ross11 June 2024 10:05

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Ukraine’s recovery – problems within Kyiv government

Among other immediate problems Ukraine faces, sustained Russian attacks on its power grid in recent weeks have forced leaders in Kyiv to institute nationwide rolling blackouts.

But on Monday, the head of the State Agency for Restoration of Ukraine, Mustafa Nayyem, announced his resignation on Facebook.

He cited “systemic obstacles that prevent me from exercising my powers effectively” and accused the government of bogging his agency down in red tape.

Ukraine hasn’t had a minister dedicated to reconstruction since Oleksandr Kubrakov was dismissed in May.

Mr Nayyem complained that Ukraine‘s prime minister barred him from attending the Berlin conference, starting on Tuesday

Alex Ross11 June 2024 09:45



The article was first published here

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