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Zelenskyy mum on specifics of new US aid – The Denver Post

By The Related Press

LVIV, Ukraine — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy stated he was grateful to U.S. President Joe Biden for the extra navy support however stated he wouldn’t say particularly what the brand new package deal included as a result of he didn’t need to tip off Russia.

“This is our defense,” he stated in his nighttime video tackle to the nation. “When the enemy doesn’t know what to expect from us. As they didn’t know what awaited them after Feb. 24,” the day Russia invaded. “They didn’t know what we had for defense or how we prepared to meet the blow.”

Zelenskyy stated Russia anticipated to seek out Ukraine a lot because it did in 2014, when it seized Crimea with out a combat and backed separatists as they took management of the japanese Donbas area. However Ukraine is now a special nation, with a lot stronger defenses, he stated.

He stated it additionally was not the time to disclose Ukraine’s techniques within the ongoing negotiations with Russia. “Working more in silence than on television, radio or on Facebook,” Zelenskyy stated. “I consider it the right way.”

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KEY DEVELOPMENTS IN THE RUSSIA-UKRAINE WAR:

— Rescuers seek for survivors at Mariupol theater hit by Russian airstrike; casualties unclear

— An American man was amongst many killed in a Russian assault on the northern Ukrainian metropolis of Chernihiv

— Biden flatly calls Putin a warfare legal, however investigations for figuring out which have solely begun

— Low-cost however deadly Turkish drones bolster Ukraine’s defenses

— Go to https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine for extra protection

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OTHER DEVELOPMENTS TODAY:

UNITED NATIONS — Russia’s U.N. ambassador says he isn’t asking for a vote Friday on its decision on the humanitarian state of affairs in Ukraine, which has been sharply criticized by Western international locations for making no point out of Russia’s duty for the warfare in opposition to its smaller neighbor.

Vassily Nebenzia instructed the U.N. Safety Council Thursday that Russia determined at this stage to not search a vote due to strain from the USA and Albania on U.N. members to oppose it, however he burdened that Moscow will not be withdrawing the decision.

Nebenzia stated Russia plans to go forward with a council assembly Friday to debate once more its allegations of U.S. “biological laboratories” in Ukraine with claiming new paperwork. His preliminary cost was made with none proof and repeatedly denied by U.S. and Ukrainian officers.

U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield responded to Nebenzia’s announcement by saying “their farcical humanitarian resolution … was doomed to fail.”

“We know if Russia really cared about humanitarian crises, the one that it created, it could simply stop its attacks on the people of Ukraine,” she stated. “But instead, they want to call for another Security Council meeting to use this council as a venue for its disinformation and for promoting its propaganda.”

Eventually Friday’s council assembly on Russia’s preliminary allegations of U.S. “biological activities,” Thomas-Greenfield accused Russia of utilizing the Safety Council for “lying and spreading disinformation” as a part of a possible false-flag operation by Moscow for the usage of chemical or organic brokers in Ukraine.

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UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. well being chief decried the devastating penalties of warfare on the Ukrainian people who find themselves dealing with extreme disruption to companies and drugs and burdened that “the life-saving medicine we need right now is peace.”

World Well being Group Director-Basic Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus instructed the U.N. Safety Council Thursday that WHO has verified 43 assaults on hospitals and well being amenities with 12 folks killed and 34 injured.

In a digital briefing, Tedros stated “the disruption to services and supplies is posing an extreme risk to people with cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes, HIV and TB, which are among the leading causes of mortality in Ukraine.”

The WHO chief stated displacement and overcrowding brought on by folks fleeing preventing are prone to improve the dangers of ailments similar to COVID-19, measles, pneumonia and polio.

As well as, greater than 35,000 psychological well being sufferers in Ukrainian psychiatric hospitals and long-term care amenities face extreme shortages of drugs, meals, well being and blankets, he stated.

Thus far, WHO has despatched about 100 metric tonnes (110 tons) of medical provides, sufficient for 4,500 trauma sufferers and 450,000 major well being care sufferers for a month, to Ukraine together with different tools. Tedros stated the company is making ready an additional 108 metric tonnes (119 tons) for supply.

Tedros urged donors to help the immense and escalating humanitarian wants in Ukraine and totally fund the U.N.’s $1.1 billion humanitarian attraction.

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UNITED NATIONS — The U.N. political chief is looking for an investigation of huge civilian casualties and the destruction of lots of of residential buildings, faculties, hospitals and different civilian infrastructure in Ukraine, and for these accountable to be held accountable.

Undersecretary-Basic Rosemary DiCarlo instructed the U.N. Safety Council Thursday that “international humanitarian law is crystal clear” in prohibiting direct assaults on civilians in navy operations and guaranteeing their safety. But, she stated, lots of the every day assaults which can be battering Ukrainian cities “are reportedly indiscriminate, resulting in civilian casualties and damage to civilian infrastructure.”

DiCarlo cited the U.N. human rights workplace’s newest statistics: 1,900 civilian casualties from the beginning of the warfare on Feb. 24 to March 15, comprising 726 folks killed, together with 52 kids, and 1,174 injured — with the precise quantity probably a lot increased.

“Most of these casualties were caused by the use in populated areas of explosive weapons with a wide impact area,” she stated.

The U.N. improvement company, UNDP, tasks that if the warfare continues, 90% of Ukraine’s inhabitants may very well be dealing with poverty and excessive financial vulnerability, “setting the country — and the region — back decades, and leaving deep social and economic scars,” she stated.

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CHERNIHIV, Ukraine — An American man was killed in a Russian assault on the northern Ukrainian metropolis of Chernihiv, the place he was searching for medical remedy for his companion. The dying of Jim Hill, of Diggs, Idaho, was reported Thursday by his sister.

“My brother Jimmy Hill was killed yesterday in Chernihiv, Ukraine. He was waiting in a bread line with several other people when they were gunned down by Russian military snippers,” his sister, Cheryl Hill Gordon, wrote on Fb. “His body was found in the street by the local police.”

Ukrainian officers reported that 10 folks had been killed Wednesday in Chernihiv whereas standing within the bread line.

Chernihiv police and the U.S. State Division confirmed the dying of an American however didn’t determine him. Hill was no less than the second U.S. citizen to be killed within the battle, after the killing of journalist and filmmaker Brent Renaud final week.

In poignant posts on Fb within the weeks earlier than his dying, Hill described “indiscriminate bombing” in a metropolis beneath siege.

Hill, who recognized himself as a lecturer at universities in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, and Warsaw, Poland, stated he was in Chernihiv along with his companion for her to obtain medical remedy.

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WASHINGTON — Secretary of State Antony Blinken says U.S. officers are within the technique of evaluating and documenting potential warfare crimes dedicated by Russia in its warfare in opposition to Ukraine.

The assertion to reporters on Thursday got here at some point after President Joe Biden referred to as Russian chief Vladimir Putin a “war criminal.”

Blinken says he believes the intentional focusing on of civilians in Ukraine would quantity to a warfare crime, and that there might be accountability and “massive consequences” for any warfare crimes decided to have occurred.

The U.S. and 44 different international locations are working collectively to analyze potential violations and abuses, after the passage of a decision by the United Nations Human Rights Council to ascertain a fee of inquiry. There’s one other probe by the Worldwide Legal Court docket, an unbiased physique primarily based within the Netherlands.

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NEW YORK — PayPal customers will now be capable to ship cash to Ukrainians, each within the war-ravaged nation in addition to these now refugees throughout Europe, the corporate stated Thursday.

Beforehand, folks in Ukraine had been solely in a position to make use of the funds platform to ship cash in a foreign country. They are going to now be capable to obtain funds, in addition to make transfers inside Ukraine and overseas.

It’s the newest measure by banks and different monetary companies firms on the lookout for methods to assist Ukrainians impacted by Russia’s invasion. PayPal minimize off Russia from its companies final week.

For the reason that warfare started, Individuals and different supporters of Ukraine have been on the lookout for methods to financially help Ukrainian refugees in addition to these nonetheless within the nation. Cash switch firms like MoneyGram and Western Union have seen surges in demand as folks search for methods to ship cash to family and friends within the area.

PayPal stated it can waive charges on transfers of funds to Ukrainian accounts, or for anybody receiving funds in Ukrainian accounts till June 30.

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SOFIA, Bulgaria — Forward of U.S. Protection Secretary Lloyd Austin’s go to to NATO member Bulgaria, the place he’s anticipated to debate with authorities officers potential navy support for Ukraine, Russia’s ambassador to Sofia referred to as on Bulgaria to abstain from supplying arms to Kyiv.

“I would like to warn the official Bulgarian authorities that the supply of weapons, including of Soviet origin, and ammunition to the Ukrainian nationalists is unlikely to add optimism to the bilateral dialogue, which for now is already deteriorated,” Ambassador Eleonora Mitrofanova stated in a Fb submit on Thursday.

In response to native media, Bulgaria’s authorities is hesitant to ship arms to Ukraine. The federal government itself has up to now declined to touch upon the matter.

Many within the Balkan nation, as soon as one of many closest Soviet allies, nonetheless harbor pro-Russian sentiments which have historic cultural and non secular roots.

Now, the nation is offering humanitarian help and sheltering Ukrainian refugees, a few of that are of Bulgarian origin.

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WASHINGTON — U.S. refugee officers have been despatched to Europe to assist display Ukrainian refugees who may need to come to the U.S. However American officers count on the overwhelming majority will need to return to their homeland.

U.S. Secretary of Homeland Safety Alejandro Mayorkas additionally stated that Customs and Border Safety brokers alongside the U.S.-Mexico border have been instructed to permit Ukrainians to enter the nation to hunt asylum whilst most individuals are turned again beneath a public well being order instituted at first of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Greater than 3 million folks have fled Ukraine following Russia’s Feb. 24 invasion. Greater than half have gone to Poland. A lot of the relaxation are within the surrounding international locations of Japanese Europe, in response to the U.N. Excessive Commissioner for Refugees.

Mayorkas instructed reporters Thursday that U.S. refugee officers have been despatched to the area to work with the U.N. and decide whether or not some Ukrainians could search to come back to the U.S. by means of the refugee program. However he and different administration officers usually are not anticipating many will need to come.

“The vast majority of Ukrainians are displaced in the countries in that region, with the hope, understandably, of being able to return to their country,” the secretary stated.

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KYIV, Ukraine — A lady in a Kyiv hospital mattress appeared surprised and cried throughout a go to by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Thursday.

The unidentified affected person instructed of individuals providing their help on TikTok.

“We have occupied TikTok,” Zelenskyy quipped.

He offered the woman with a big bouquet of pink and white flowers as troopers stood guard.

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MARIUPOL, Ukraine — Row upon row of windowless shells of burned and shrapnel-scarred residence buildings loomed in Mariupol as snow flurries fell Thursday.

One resident instructed of getting nothing to eat and no approach to contact her mom in Makiivka, a metropolis 50 miles (80 kilometers) north, to inform her she was alive.

“We are trying to survive somehow,” stated the resident, Elena, who didn’t present her final identify. “There is no connection, just nothing. It is cruel. My child is hungry. I don’t know what to give him to eat.”

Automobiles, some with the “Z” image of the Russian invasion drive of their home windows, drove previous stacks of ammunition packing containers and artillery shells. Others waited in lengthy strains of visitors or acquired round on foot, pushing carts and child carriages.

A land mine may very well be seen on the bottom. Smoke rose from town’s skyline.

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PRISTINA, Kosovo — Kosovo’s president on Thursday requested U.S. President Joe Biden to assist Kosovo turn into a NATO member at a time that Russia is making efforts to destabilize the Balkans.

President Vjosa Osmani despatched a letter to Biden saying that “Kosovo’s membership in NATO has become an imperative.”

Kosovo, “the most pro-American and pro-NATO country in the world,” is excluded from NATO enlargement processes, she stated in a letter made accessible to The Related Press.

Osmani urged Biden to make use of the U.S. “leadership and influence to actively support and advance the complex process of NATO membership for Kosovo.”

Whereas the world’s eyes are targeted on the devastating warfare in Ukraine, Osmani stated that “we must not lose sight of the fragile situation we face in the Balkans.”

“We are exposed to persistent efforts by Russia to undermine Kosovo and destabilize the entire Western Balkans,” she wrote.

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LONDON — Britain’s protection secretary has accused Russia of “dirty tricks” after he was referred to as by an imposter posing because the prime minister of Ukraine.

Ben Wallace stated he had ordered an investigation into how the hoax caller was in a position to communicate to him on a video name Thursday.

Wallace stated on Twitter that he grew to become suspicious and hung up after the caller “posed several misleading questions.” The decision is believed to have lasted about 10 minutes.

Wallace referred to as it a determined try” however stated “no amount of Russian disinformation, distortion and dirty tricks can distract from Russia’s human rights abuses and illegal invasion of Ukraine.”

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WARSAW, Poland — Poland’s overseas minister, who can be head of Europe’s safety group, stated Thursday that no concessions to aggressor Russia may probably be made that may undermine Ukraine’s independence or territorial integrity.

“Poland believes it to be unacceptable to offer any kind of concessions to Russia that would undermine the territorial integrity and independence of the Ukrainian state,” minister Zbigniew Rau stated following talks along with his Spanish counterpart, Jose Manuel Albares Bueno.

Rau, the present head of the Group for Safety and Cooperation in Europe, additionally stated that the worldwide neighborhood has the suitable to supply technical in addition to navy help to Ukraine, in its defensive battle in opposition to Russia’s assault.

Rau’s phrases appeared to again Poland’s current proposal for a NATO or a world navy peacekeeping mission in Ukraine.

NATO, a navy safety alliance of 30 nation, insists it can’t have any presence in Ukraine, which isn’t an alliance member, as a result of that might probably additional worsen the battle with Russia.

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ROME — At the same time as rescuers searched by means of the wreckage of a theater devastated by Russian airstrikes in Mariupol, Ukraine, Italy has supplied to supply the means and the funds to rebuild it when that turns into potential.

Italian Tradition Minister Dario Franceschini tweeted on Thursday that the federal government at a Cupboard assembly accepted his proposal to provide the help.

“The theaters of all international locations belong to all of humanity,’ the minister stated.

Rescue efforts had been being performed to seek out survivors within the wreckage. A whole bunch of civilians within the besieged metropolis had taken refuge within the theater basement and had been trapped when the airstrikes collapsed the constructing onto their shelter. By late Thursday, it was nonetheless unknown if there have been deaths or accidents.

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BERLIN — International ministers from the Group of Seven main economies are calling on Russia to adjust to the Worldwide Court docket of Justice’s order to cease its assault on Ukraine and withdraw its navy forces.

In a joint assertion, the G-7′s prime diplomats condemned what they described as “indiscriminate attacks on civilians” by Russian forces together with the siege of Mariupol and different cities.

They accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of conducting an “unprovoked and shameful war” that has pressured thousands and thousands to flee their properties and resulted within the destruction of infrastructure, hospitals, theatres and faculties.

The G-7 stated that “those responsible for war crimes, including indiscriminate use of weapons against civilians, will be held responsible” and welcomed work to analyze and collect proof on this regard, together with by the prosecutor of the Worldwide Legal Court docket.

The group additionally stated it stood able to additional improve the strain of sanctions on Ukraine and supply additional support to these in want, together with the small nation of Moldova. Moldova is providing shelter to the most important group of refugees from Ukraine per capita.

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GENEVA — The exiled opposition chief of Belarus is decrying a change within the nation’s structure beneath autocratic pro-Russian President Alexander Lukashenko, calling it “illegal” and expressing considerations that it may carry boundaries on deploying nuclear weapons into Belarus.

Svetlana Tsikhanouskaya accused Lukashenko of going in opposition to the desire of Belarussians who “want to maintain a non-nuclear status.”

The feedback Thursday to the U.N. press affiliation, ACANU, in Geneva got here as considerations have mounted about that risk that Russia’s warfare in Ukraine may contain the usage of tactical nuclear weapons. Some Russian forces entered Ukraine by means of Belarus because the warfare started on Feb. 24.

Beatrice Fihn, govt director of the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Worldwide Marketing campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons, stated the constitutional change in Belarus may expedite the deployment of tactical nuclear weapons. If it concerned outfitting fighter planes, Fihn stated, “it could happen within a couple of days.”

The brand new structure, adopted final month with amendments that took impact on Tuesday, sheds Belarus’ impartial standing and opens the best way for even larger navy cooperation with Russia however doesn’t straight cope with the potential for deploying nuclear weapons. Lukashenko has beforehand supplied to host Russian nuclear weapons in Belarus.

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MADRID — Spanish authorities have ordered for a 3rd luxurious yacht believed to be owned by a Russian oligarch to not depart its ports.

Spain’s Civil Guard has acted on orders from maritime authorities to not let the “Crescent” tremendous yacht depart the port of Tarragona, police instructed The Related Press.

The 135-meter yacht is reportedly owned by Igor Sechin, the pinnacle of Russian oil firm Rosneft. The European Union has positioned sanctions on Sechin as a result of he’s “one of Vladimir Putin’s most trusted and closest advisors, as well as his personal friend.”

This follows orders by Spanish authorities to carry the “Valerie” in Barcelona’s port and “Lady Anastasia” in Mallorca earlier this week, police stated.

All three vessels are believed to be owned by Russian magnates with shut ties to Putin.

The remain-in-port orders come after the superyacht “My Solaris” linked to Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich left Barcelona’s port. It was later seen off Montenegro.

Authorities in Italy, France and different international locations have impounded a number of luxurious vessels as a world crackdown in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

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HELSINKI — Estonia’s protection ministry says the USA has earmarked $180 million in navy help to the Baltic NATO members of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania this yr beneath a scheme entitled the Baltic Safety Initiative.

The ministry stated on Thursday {that a} funds package deal accepted by the U.S. Congress represents a rise of greater than $10 million from final yr in safety help to the three former Soviet republics which all border Russia and have assisted Ukraine with arms and materials assist after the beginning of Moscow’s invasion.

“The United States has demonstrated clear initiative in the current security crisis, both in supporting its NATO Allies in the East, as well as Ukraine, and in bringing the actions of Russia to the attention of the international community,” Estonian Protection Minister Kalle Laanet stated.

“The decision by Congress shows that the United States is committed to the defense of our region and clearly understands that the defense of their own country is connected with the Baltic countries,” Laanet stated.

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WASHINGTON — President Biden denounced Russian President Vladimir Putin’s “brutality” throughout a Thursday assembly with Irish Prime Minister Micheál Martin.

“Putin’s brutality and what his troops are doing in Ukraine is just inhumane,” Biden stated.

The assembly on St. Patrick’s Day was purported to be held in particular person within the Oval Workplace, nevertheless it occurred just about as a result of Martin examined optimistic for COVID-19 on Wednesday night. The optimistic outcome pressured him to go away early from a gala the place he had already interacted with Biden and Home Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Biden stated Martin was “looking good, feeling good.” Martin was staying throughout Pennsylvania Avenue at Blair Home, the customary visitor quarters for visiting overseas leaders.

Throughout their dialog, Martin thanked Biden for “your capacity to marshal like-minded democracies,” which he stated are “coming together to respond in an unprecedented way.”

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BRATISLAVA, Slovakia — The protection minister of NATO member Slovakia says his nation could be keen to supply S-300 long-range air protection missile techniques to Ukraine beneath sure circumstances.

Protection Minister Jaroslav Naj’ stated at a information convention in Bratislava with visiting U.S. Protection Secretary Lloyd Austin that the matter continues to be beneath dialogue.

The Soviet-era anti-air protection techniques use long-range missiles which can be able to flying lots of of miles and flattening cruise missiles in addition to warplanes. They may very well be invaluable in thwarting Russian air assaults on Ukraine.

Naj’ stated such a switch could be potential if his nation obtained a “proper replacement” for its S-300s or if Slovakia obtained a “capability guaranteed for a certain period of time.”

He burdened that he couldn’t responsibly switch the S-300s to Ukraine in a way that left a spot in his nation’s defenses. He stated Slovakia is open to creating an association that preserved its defenses in opposition to air threats.

Austin declined to say whether or not the Pentagon was ready to supply Slovakia with a substitute for its S-300s. “These are things that we will continue to work with all of our allies on, and certainly this is not just a U.S. issue, it’s a NATO issue.”

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