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Turkey says three grain ships will leave Ukraine on Friday

Plans are underway for the departure of three more grain ships from Ukraine on Friday, Turkey said, following the departure of the registered Razoni in Sierra Leone on Monday. France has welcomed 100,000 Ukrainian refugees since the Russian invasion of Ukraine began more than five months ago, authorities said Thursday. Read the day’s events as they unfolded. All times are Paris time (GMT + 2).

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2:16: Ukraine claims it was forced to cede some territories to the east

Ukraine said it was forced to surrender some territories in the east of the country in the face of a Russian offensive, and the head of the NATO military alliance said Moscow must not be allowed to win the war.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky this week called the pressure on his armed forces in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine “hell”. He spoke of fierce fighting around the city of Avdiivka and the fortified village of Pisky, where Kiev has acknowledged the “partial success” of its Russian enemy in recent days.

00:29: Canada will send military trainers to the UK to teach Ukrainian troops

Canada is sending military trainers to the UK to teach Ukrainians how to fight Russian invasion forces, Defense Minister Anita Anand said Wednesday.

Up to 225 members of the Canadian military will ultimately remain in the UK for an initial four-month period, Anand said. They will work together with counterparts from Great Britain, the Netherlands and New Zealand in training Ukrainian troops on the basis of military service.

“This is a time at hand for allies and partners who support Ukraine,” Anand said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press.

A previous Canadian military training mission based in Ukraine was suspended a few weeks before the invasion began.

23:38: Zelensky accuses Amnesty of excusing the Russian “terrorist state”

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky condemned Amnesty International for apologizing for Russian “terror” after the human rights group claimed Kiev forces were endangering civilians by setting up bases in residential areas.

“There is no condition, not even hypothetical, under which any Russian attack on Ukraine becomes justified. The aggression against our state is unmotivated, invasive and terrorist,” he added.

20:55: EU sanctions former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych

EU member states imposed sanctions on the former pro-Russian president ousted from Ukraine on Thursday Viktor Yanukovych and his son Oleksandr for their alleged role in threatening the security of Ukraine.

In a statement, the European Council said the two were added to an existing EU sanctions list established “in response to ongoing, unwarranted and unprovoked Russian military aggression against Ukraine”.

19:53: Turkey says three grain ships are scheduled to leave Ukraine on Friday

Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said there are plans for three ships to depart from Ukrainian ports on Friday as part of the deal to unblock the country’s grain exports, his ministry said Thursday.

Akar also said that an empty ship had to head for Ukraine after being inspected in Istanbul. The statement said Akar held talks with Ukrainian defense and infrastructure ministers to discuss the situation of grain deliveries.

15:52: Ukraine slams Amnesty’s report on military in civilian areas

On Thursday, the Ukrainian foreign minister criticized a report by Amnesty International that Kiev put civilians at risk by stationing troops in residential areas while fighting the invasion of Russia as “unfair”.

In a report released Thursday, Amnesty International said its researchers found Ukrainian forces exposed civilians to Russian attacks sometimes by relying on schools, residential buildings and other locations in populated areas.

Amnesty also said it found Ukrainian forces using hospitals as military bases in five locations, which the human rights group called “a clear violation of international humanitarian law”.

“This behavior of Amnesty International does not consist in finding and reporting the truth to the world, but in creating a false equivalence – between the perpetrator and the victim, between the country that destroys hundreds and thousands of civilians, cities, territories and a Country that is desperately defending itself, “said Dmytro Kuleba in a video posted on Facebook.

13:30: Zelensky says Schroeder’s remarks for a “negotiated solution” with Russia are “disgusting”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said it was “disgusting” for former European leaders to work for Russia, in an apparent reference to former German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder’s comments that Moscow wanted a “negotiated solution” to the war.

The leader of the war-torn country spoke in his daily speech Wednesday after the publication of an interview with German media in which Schroeder called for negotiations with Russian President Vladimir Putin: “The good news is that the Kremlin wants a negotiated deal. “. the 78-year-old, Angela Merkel’s immediate predecessor, would have said after confirming meeting with Putin in Moscow last week. Schroeder also called on Berlin to reconsider its position on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

“It is simply disgusting when former leaders of powerful states with European values ​​work for Russia, which is fighting against these values,” Zelensky said in the video speech, without referring directly to Schroeder.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has led to enormous public pressure in Germany for Schroeder to turn his back on Putin and sever his ties with Russian energy giants. Schroeder was chairman of the board of directors of the Russian oil giant Rosneft.

1:30 pm: Russian bombing kills 8 at bus stop in eastern Ukraine

Russian bombing of a bus stop Thursday in the frontline city of Toretsk in eastern Ukraine killed eight people and left four injured, the regional governor said. “According to preliminary information, there was an artillery fire. They hit a public transport stop, where at that moment there was a crowd of people,” wrote on telegram Pavlo Kyrylenko, head of the administration of the region of Donetsk, managed by Ukraine.

10:49 France welcomes 100,000 Ukrainian refugees

France has welcomed 100,000 Ukrainian refugees since the Russian invasion of Ukraine began more than five months ago, Didier Leschi, director general of the French Office for Immigration and Integration (Ofii), told AFP on Thursday. .

“Since Wednesday evening the threshold of 100 thousand displaced by the conflict in Ukraine” has been exceeded, “said Leschi, confirming information published in the French newspaper Le Figaro.

9:08 am: UN nuclear watchdog appeals for access to Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia power plant

The head of the UN nuclear supervisory body appealed for access to the Ukrainian nuclear power plant in Zaporizhzhia, now controlled by Russian forces to determine if it was a source of danger.

Contacts with the largest nuclear power plant in Europe, which is located in Zaporizhzhia and is managed by Ukrainian technicians, were “fragile” and communications did not work every day, the head of the agency told the Swiss newspaper Tages-Anzeiger. International Atomic Energy Institute (IAEA) Rafael Grossi.

“We cannot afford miscommunication with the plant in safety-relevant areas. We are aware of allegations that live ammunition is stored at the plant, that there are attacks on the power plant,” he said in an interview published in German. “Frankly, if I don’t have access, I can’t determine it. There are contradictions between the reports from the Russian and Ukrainian side. I receive information, I also mention it in my reports on the situation, but I have no way of determining if it corresponds to the facts.”

A Russian official based in Ukraine said Wednesday that Ukrainian forces have repeatedly used Western weapons to attack the plant, which has two of the six reactors in operation and has been the subject of repeated warnings from Ukraine, the West and Russia.

8:15 am: Russian troops bomb cities near Kharkhiv

Ukrainian authorities in the east said several cities have been bombed in the past few hours, including the Kharkhiv region. In the Donetsk region, Kiev has initiated mandatory evacuations due to heavy bombing. But many refuse, claiming they have nowhere else to go.

7:45 am: Ukraine warns of a new Russian offensive in the south

On the battlefield, Russian forces have been engaged in considerable military activity, firing from tanks, barrel artillery and rockets in different parts of Ukraine, the Ukrainian Armed Forces General Staff said Thursday. Ukraine said that Russia has begun to create a strike group in the direction of Kryvyi Rih and that it could prepare new offensive operations in southern Ukraine.

The steel-producing city of Kryvyi Rih, where Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky grew up, is located approximately 50 km (30 miles) from the southern front line, between the Russian-occupied city of Zaporizhzhia and Mykolaiv.

2:00 am: Zelensky reportedly sought “direct talks” with China to help end the war in Ukraine

Ukraine is looking for an opportunity to speak “directly” with Chinese leader Xi Jinping to help end his war with Russia, President Volodymyr Zelensky the South China Morning Post said Thursday.

In an interview with SCMP, he urged the Ukrainian leader China use his immeasurable political and economic influence on Russia to end the fighting.

“It is a very powerful state. It is a powerful economy … So (it) can influence Russia politically and economically. And China is [also a] permanent member of the United Nations Security Council, “cites Zelensky in the report.

00:34: The United States Senate approves the resolution ratifying the accession of Sweden and Finland to NATO

The US Senate ratified the entry of Sweden and Finland into NATO on Wednesday, strongly supporting the expansion of the transatlantic alliance in the face of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The Senate voted 95 to 1 in favor of joining the two Nordic countries, making the United States the 23rd of NATO’s 30 countries to have formally approved it so far, after Italy approved it on Wednesday and France on Tuesday.

(FRANCE 24 with AFP, AP and REUTERS)

Originally published on France24

Turkey says three grain ships will leave Ukraine on Friday

SourceTurkey says three grain ships will leave Ukraine on Friday

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