Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy hailed his country’s bravery on Thursday evening and said Ukraine should be proud to have survived 50 days under Russian attack when the Russians “gave us a maximum of five”.
In a video address, Zelenskyy called it “the achievement of millions of Ukrainians, of all those who on February 24 made the most important decision of their lives – to fight.” He added: “But they didn’t know us either. And they didn’t know how brave Ukrainians are, how much we value freedom. Our chance to live as we want.”
Meanwhile, the legendary Russian warship Moskva, whose proud history dates back to the Cold War era, sank in the Black Sea on Thursday in the latest blow to Moscow’s war effort in Ukraine.
The loss of the ship, built in Ukraine during Soviet times and named after the Russian capital, represents a military setback and a symbolic defeat for Russia as its troops regroup for a new offensive in eastern Ukraine after stumbling in the north.
The Russian Defense Ministry said the Moskva – flagship of the country’s Black Sea fleet – was being towed to port when it “lost stability due to hull damage received during the fire of the detonation of ammunition. In the conditions of rough seas, the ship sank.” But Odessa Governor Maksym Marchenko said on Telegram that Ukrainian forces hit the missile cruiser with two missiles.
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►IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said the aftermath of the Russian invasion contributed to downgrading the economic ratings of 143 countries.
►Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said his country had “made great efforts to defuse the situation, defuse the crisis and rebuild peace”. China has refused to condemn the invasion of Ukraine by its strategic partner, Russia, or even to refer to the conflict as a war.
Russia threatens to bring closer nuclear weapons if Finland and Sweden join NATO
The entry of Finland and Sweden into NATO would force Russia to strengthen its northwestern borders and place nuclear weapons in the region, Russian Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev said on Thursday. Medvedev noted on his Telegram channel that the length of Russia’s land border with the NATO alliance would more than double. One of Russia’s explanations for its invasion of Ukraine was concern over possible NATO expansion there.
“Naturally, these borders will have to be reinforced. The consolidation of ground forces and air defense will be seriously strengthened and significant naval forces will be deployed in the waters of the Gulf of Finland,” Medvedev wrote, adding that maintaining the region’s non-nuclear status is “out of the question.” .
Contribute: The Associated Press