Russian-Ukrainian War Live: Zelenskiy pushes for 10th sanctions package from EU leaders meeting in Kyiv | Ukraine

Key events

Director of the US Central Intelligence Agency William Burns said on Thursday that Chinese President Xi Jinping’s ambitions for Taiwan should not be underestimated, although he is likely to be sobered by the military’s performance Russian in Ukraine.

Burns said the United States knew “for intelligence reasons” that Xi had ordered his military to be ready to lead an invasion of autonomous Taiwan by 2027.

“Now that doesn’t mean he’s decided to carry out an invasion in 2027, or any other year, but it does serve as a reminder of the seriousness of his purpose and his ambition,” Burns said at a University event. from Georgetown to Washington.

“Our assessment at the CIA is that I would not underestimate President Xi’s ambitions for Taiwan,” he said, adding that the Chinese leader was likely “surprised and unstable” and attempting to draw lessons from the “very poor performance” of the Russian army and its weapon systems in Ukraine.

Ukraine’s allies are pushing the International Monetary Fund to finalize plans for a multibillion-dollar loan program, the Financial Times reported on Friday.

IMF officials plan to meet with Ukrainian officials in mid-February to advance talks on a loan of up to $14 billion to $16 billion, the report said, citing officials familiar with the talks.

Zelenskiy pushes for 10th sanctions package from EU leaders meeting in Kyiv

European Union leaders will meet Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy in Kyiv today, bringing the promise of new sanctions against Russia but likely dashing Ukraine’s hopes of early EU membership, reports Reuters.

The head of the group’s executive board, Ursula von der Leyen, arrived in Kyiv on Thursday by train, a symbolic trip to show support for Ukraine ahead of the first anniversary of Russia’s February 24, 2022 invasion.

Senior EU executive officials have met their counterparts in the Ukrainian government, and von der Leyen and the chairman of the EU’s 27 national leaders, Charles Michel, will convene talks with Zelenskiy on Friday.

Zelenskiy has called on the European Union for more punitive measures against Russia, but the new sanctions the bloc is preparing for the anniversary will not meet his government’s demands.

“We see today that the pace of sanctions in Europe has slowed down a bit,” Zelensky told a joint press conference alongside European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. “Rather, the terrorist state is accelerating the pace of adaptation to sanctions. It should be resolved. We believe we can do it together.

“Russia is paying a heavy price, as our sanctions are eroding its economy, setting it back a generation,” Von der Leyen said Thursday. “By February 24, exactly one year after the start of the invasion, we aim to have the 10th sanctions package in place.”

Welcome and Summary

Hello and welcome to today’s live coverage of the war in Ukraine. My name is Helen Sullivan and I will bring you the latest news shortly.

Our main story this morning: European Union leaders will meet Volodymyr Zelenskiy in Kyiv on Friday, bringing the promise of new sanctions against Russia, but likely dashing Ukraine and its president’s hopes of early EU membership. EU.

“Russia is paying a heavy price, as our sanctions are eroding its economy, setting it back a generation,” Von der Leyen said Thursday. “By February 24, exactly one year after the start of the invasion, we aim to have the 10th sanctions package in place.”

Here are other key recent developments – including what has happened so far in talks between EU leaders and Zelenskiy:

  • The European Union has pledged to double its military aid program for Ukraine by training 15,000 additional soldiers part of a blizzard of announcements aimed at showing that he “will stand with Ukraine for the long haul”. Speaking at the start of a two-day trip to Kyiv, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen reiterated that the EU aims to put in place a 10th sanctions package against Russia by February 24.

  • Von der Leyen also reiterated that the EU would cap the price of Russian petroleum products, part of a broader G7 plan to restrict oil revenues available to the Kremlin war machine. The G7 and the EU have already agreed on a crude oil price cap which came into effect last December and, according to Von der Leyen, costs Russia 160 million euros (143 million pounds sterling/$174 million) per day. The 27 EU member states have yet to agree on the final oil price cap.

  • The EU also intended to work with Ukrainian prosecutors to set up an international center for the prosecution of the crime of aggression in Ukraine. be located in The Hague, Von der Leyen said. The purpose of this center was to collect and store evidence for any future trial, whether conducted through a special court or otherwise.

  • The European Parliament votes in favor of a roadmap for Ukraine’s accession to the EU. Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal has said he wants Ukraine to join the EU in two years, but in reality it is likely to take much longer.

  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has urged the EU to impose more sanctions on Russia, and said he had discussed a new sanctions package with Von der Leyen. Zelenskiy said the speed of the EU sanctions campaign against Russia had “slowed down slightly” while Russia had “accelerated its pace of adaptation to sanctions”.

  • British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak says sending fighter jets to Ukraine would take ‘months or even years’ of training and that he was looking for the most effective way to help Kyiv to victory.

  • Russia is planning a major offensive to coincide with the first anniversary of the war in Ukraine on February 24, according to the Ukrainian Defense Minister. Speaking to French media, Oleksii Reznikov said Russia would call in a large contingent of mobilized troops. Referring to the general mobilization of 300,000 conscript troops in September, he said numbers at the border suggest the actual size could be closer to 500,000.

  • Russia has warned it has ‘potential’ to respond to Western arms deliveries to Ukraine that will not be limited to ‘use of armored vehicles’. In a speech marking the 80th anniversary of the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in the Battle of Stalingrad, Vladimir Putin appeared to allude to Russia’s massive arsenal of nuclear weapons, warning that “those who hope to win over the battlefield apparently do not understand that a modern system the war with Russia will be quite different for them”.

  • Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev says Russia’s arms suppliers will ‘significantly’ increase deliveries of military equipment during this year. Medvedev, who is deputy chairman of Russia’s powerful security council and oversees a government commission on arms production, said new supplies would help Russia inflict a ‘crushing defeat’ on Ukraine on the battlefield .

  • Two Russian missiles hit Kramatorsk on Thursdayafter an apartment building in the eastern Ukrainian city was hit on Wednesday night, killing at least three people and injuring 20. The latest strikes have caused civilian casualties, said the head of the regional military administration, Pavlo Kyrylenko, but it is not known how many. In addition, two people were killed by Russian shelling in the southern region of Kherson.

  • At least eight people have died after a fire at a dormitory for construction workers in the Crimean city of Sevastopol, Russian officials said. The fire broke out in temporary accommodation for workers building the Tavrida highway, a road linking the cities of Sevastopol and Simferopol, according to the Russian-installed governor of Sevastopol.

  • Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says everyone wants an end to the conflict in Ukraine, but that Western support for Kyiv played an important role in how Moscow approached the campaign. In an interview with Russian state television, Lavrov also said that Moscow intended to overshadow pro-Ukrainian events organized by Western and allied countries around the world to mark the invasion of Ukraine on 24 february.

  • A senior Russian lieutenant who fled after serving in Ukraine has described how his country’s troops tortured prisoners of war and threatened some with rape. “I personally saw our troops torturing Ukrainian soldiers,” Konstantin said. Yefremov, who is the oldest soldier to speak out against the war, told the Guardian in a phone call. “I’m relieved to finally be able to talk about the things I saw.”

  • A state-of-the-art missile defense system supplied by Italy and France is expected to be operational in Ukraine within the next two monthssaid Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani. France and Italy have agreed to provide their SAMP/T air defense system to Ukraine, at Kyiv’s request, to help protect the country’s critical infrastructure and cities against the regular barrage of Russian missiles striking the ‘Ukraine.

  • Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki says he is ready to supply Ukraine with F-16 fighter jets if the decision is made with the NATO allies. In an interview with Bild, he stressed that his assessment was “based on what NATO countries decide together” and that the decision required the “strategic consideration of the whole” of the alliance.


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