Russia, Ukraine Hold Talk As War Rages
Reports are coming out that talks between Russia and Ukraine delegations ended while the firing is still on.
Ahead of the talks, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky wanted a ceasefire and called for immediate EU membership, while Russia’s negotiators have talked of striking a deal that’s in the interests of both sides.
The Ukraine delegation includes Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov and Deputy Foreign Minister Mykola Tochytskyi. Russia is represented by Deputy Defense Minister Alexander Fomin, Presidential adviser Vladimir Medinsky and Russian Ambassador to Belarus Boris Gryzlov.
Ahead of the talks, French President Emmanuel Macron spoke to both Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart.
And US President Joe Biden will host a call with Allies and partners to discuss the latest developments regarding Russia’s attack on Ukraine and to coordinate their united response at 11.15 AM ET Monday.
The US State Department repeated its call on American citizens not to travel to Russia, citing “the unprovoked and unjustified attack by Russian military forces in Ukraine.”
Roughly two-thirds of Russian forces who had been deployed along the border are now inside Ukraine.
Ukrainian capital Kiev is putting up stiff resistance in the face of invading Russian forces. No major cities inside Ukraine have yet been captured.
Russian forces, which are converging from the northeast and northwest, remain about 30 kilometers from the city center of Ukraine’s capital, according to the US Defense Department.
In the south of Ukraine, Russian forces are moving northeast toward Mariupol and are now about 50 kilometers from the center of that city. They are also moving northwest toward the city of Kherson.
Russia claimed to have taken control of the airspace over Ukraine.
Ukrainians are still using their own aircraft and air and missile defense systems, which are believed to be degraded.
Russians continue launching missiles against targets in Ukraine, mostly short-range, ballistic missiles.
Meanwhile, a senior Pentagon official said at a press briefing that U.S. officials don’t doubt reports that Russian President Vladimir Putin has placed his nuclear deterrence forces on high alert.
On Monday, the International Olympic Committee recommended to international sports federations that athletes from Russia and Belarus will be banned from competitions in light of the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
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