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Russia Ukraine war update: Sunak says Putin not interested in ‘genuine peace’ as Zelensky hails ‘historic’ talks

Russia Ukraine war update: Sunak says Putin not interested in ‘genuine peace’ as Zelensky hails ‘historic’ talks

Zelensky says China trying to undermine Ukraine peace summit

Vladimir Putin has no interest in achieving “genuine peace” in Ukraine, prime minister Rishi Sunak said on the first day of the Kyiv-led peace summit in Switzerland and warned against the Russian leader’s “escalating nuclear rhetoric”.

Almost 100 countries are gathered for the summit led by Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky where he is seeking to show the backing he has against Russia and drumming up support for a plan to end the war.

Mr Sunak also condemned Russia’s allies. “They are placing themselves on the side of the aggressor – and on the wrong side of history. Putin has no interest in a genuine peace,” he said.

Russia was not invited to the talks while China, its most important ally, declined to attend saying “an international peace conference should be endorsed by both Russia and Ukraine, with the equal participation of all parties”.

A draft of the summit’s final declaration blames Russia’s “war” for causing “large-scale human suffering and destruction” and asks for Ukraine’s territorial integrity to be respected. An earlier version said Russian “aggression” rather than “war”.

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Ukraine employs a flexible defense while waiting for new Western ammo to get to the front

Ukrainian firepower has been improving since U.S. lawmakers approved a much-needed military aid package this spring, though not quickly enough to halt the Russian offensive in eastern Ukraine.

Although the influx of Western munitions has shrunk Kyiv‘s glaring artillery disadvantage, Moscow’s forces are still gaining ground along the snaking front line and will likely continue to do so through the summer, when the drier ground and longer days will only aid their push.

Ukraine is still on the defensive in the Donetsk region, enabling Moscow’s forces to inflict heavy losses during Ukrainian troop rotations and bringing them closer to crucial Ukrainian supply routes.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain16 June 2024 06:00

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Zelensky slams Putin and Russia in inaugural speech at peace talks

Calling for peace in war-hit Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky condemned Russian president Vladimir Putin’s military onslaught and invasion in his inaugural speech at the ongoing peace talks in Switzerland.

“Putin has taken the lives of thousands of our people to take over a neighboring country. I wish this to no one. I wish all the peoples of the world, every child, and family to live without war. I want this for all Ukrainians. Ukraine has the right to peace. Just like all of you,” he said last night.

The Ukrainian leader also explained Russia’s absence from the table, where it was not invited. “Now there is no Russia here. Why? Because if Russia was interested in peace, there would be no war. We must decide together what a just peace means for the world and how it can be achieved in a truly lasting way. The UN Charter is the basis for us,” Mr Zelensky said.

“No one has the right to kidnap the children of another nation. No one has the right to undermine peace. We are able to ensure the effectiveness of such principles. They are globally important,” he said.

Arpan Rai16 June 2024 05:07

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Putin offers truce if Ukraine exits Russian-claimed areas and drops NATO bid. Kyiv rejects it

Russian President Vladimir Putin promised Friday to “immediately” order a cease-fire in Ukraine and start negotiations if Kyiv began withdrawing troops from the four regions annexed by Moscow in 2022 and renounced plans to join NATO. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy rejected what he called an ultimatum by Putin to surrender more territory.

Putin’s remarks came as Switzerland prepared to host scores of world leaders — but not from Moscow — this weekend to try to map out first steps toward peace in Ukraine.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain16 June 2024 05:00

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Putin treats international law like ‘toilet paper’, says Ukrainian official

The move prompted the international criminal court to issue arrest warrants for both Putin and his children’s right’s commissioner, Maria Lvova-Belova.

The horrific practice will be raised at the summit, which will also discuss food and nuclear security, which is taking place in Switzerland.

Arpan Rai16 June 2024 04:42

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Kidnapped, abused, humiliated – the Ukrainian children stolen by Russia

Anastasiia Motychak did not know why Irina – the person in charge of her camp in Russian-occupied Crimea – had just slapped her across the face; she just knew she missed her mum and wanted to go home to the Ukrainian city of Kherson.

It had been two months since the then 15-year-old had been put on a bus and moved from the then Russian-occupied Kherson, in southern Ukraine, to a two-week “vacation camp” in Yevpatoria, western Crimea. Kherson was no place for a child, the Russian soldiers had warned.

More than 70 camps for forcibly “re-educating” children have been found, according to the Ukrainian government, including in Belarus, occupied Crimea and even far-east Russia, where the children are three times closer to the United States than Ukraine.

Read Tom Watling’s special report:

Arpan Rai16 June 2024 04:38

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Putin’s ceasefire proposal calling for surrender, says Kamala Harris

US vice president Kamala Harris, who led the Washington delegation at the peace summit in Switzerland yesterday, said the Russian president was asking Ukraine to surrender to Moscow.

On the eve of the summit, Vladimir Putin said Russia would end the war if Kyiv agreed to drop its Nato ambitions and handed over four provinces claimed by Moscow. The conditions apparently reflected Moscow’s growing confidence that its forces have the upper hand in the war. The proposal was swiftly rejected by Ukraine and its allies in the West.

“He’s calling for surrender,” Ms Harris said, adding, “Let nothing about the end of this war be decided without Ukraine.”

“Freezing the conflict today, with foreign troops occupying Ukrainian land, is not the answer. It is a recipe for future wars of aggression,” said European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen.

Ms Harris announced more than $1.5bn in energy and humanitarian aid for Ukraine, where infrastructure has been pounded by Russian airstrikes since the 2022 invasion.

Arpan Rai16 June 2024 04:26

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Ukraine conference draft communique calls out Russia’s war on Ukraine

A draft communique for a summit of world leaders convened to pursue a pathway for peace in Ukraine makes reference to Russia’s “war” against Kyiv and urges that Ukraine’s territorial integrity be respected, according to a copy of the document seen by Reuters.

“In particular, we reaffirm our commitment to refraining from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, the principles of sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity of all states, including Ukraine, within their internationally recognised borders, including territorial waters, and the resolution of disputes through peaceful means as principles of international law,” the text of the draft communique read.

The final communique is due to be issued on Sunday at the conclusion of the two-day conference at the Buergenstock resort in central Switzerland. The draft was dated 13 June.

The Swiss government has said it hopes the final summit declaration will be supported unanimously by participants. The document tracked certain changes made to the draft.

The document also calls for the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant to be restored to Ukrainian control and for Kyiv’s access to its Azov sea ports to be safeguarded.

Arpan Rai16 June 2024 04:06

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We rescue Ukrainian children from Russia and see the trauma they suffer

Mykola Kuleba, the founder of Save Ukraine, calls for international action to help bring home children who have been separated from their families by Russia’s invasion:

Maryam Zakir-Hussain16 June 2024 04:00

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Sunak warns Russia’s allies they are ‘on the wrong side of history’ at Ukraine summit

Rishi Sunak has warned Russia’s allies they are “on the wrong side of history” and said Vladimir Putin has no interest in “genuine peace” in Ukraine,

He also condemned the Russian leader’s “escalating nuclear rhetoric”.

He said: “This is just and it is right. But true justice will only come when Russia leaves Ukraine.”

Arpan Rai16 June 2024 03:56

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Sunak warns Russia’s allies they are ‘on the wrong side of history’ at Ukraine summit

Rishi Sunak has warned Russia’s allies they are “on the wrong side of history” and said Vladimir Putin has no interest in “genuine peace” in Ukraine,

He also condemned the Russian leader’s “escalating nuclear rhetoric”.

Maryam Zakir-Hussain16 June 2024 03:00


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