Ukraine rejects concessions as Russians assault in east

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KYIV — Ukraine dominated out a ceasefire or any territorial concessions to Moscow as Russia stepped up its assault within the nation’s east and south, pounding the Donbas and Mykolaiv areas with air strikes and artillery fireplace.

Kyiv’s stance has develop into more and more uncompromising in latest weeks as Russia skilled navy setbacks whereas Ukrainian officers grew apprehensive they is perhaps pressured to sacrifice land for a peace deal.

“The war must end with the complete restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty,” Ukraine’s presidential chief of workers Andriy Yermak stated in a Twitter put up on Sunday.

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Polish President Andrzej Duda provided Warsaw’s backing, telling lawmakers in Kyiv on Sunday that the worldwide group needed to demand Russia’s full withdrawal and that sacrificing any of it will be a “huge blow” to your entire West.

“Worrying voices have appeared, saying that Ukraine should give in to (President Vladimir) Putin’s demands,” Duda stated, the primary international chief to handle the Ukrainian parliament in particular person since Russia’s Feb. 24 invasion.

“Only Ukraine has the right to decide about its future,” he stated.

Speaking to the identical parliamentary session, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy renewed a plea for stronger financial sanctions towards Moscow.

“Half-measures should not be used when aggression should be stopped,” he stated.

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Shortly after each completed talking, an air raid siren was heard within the capital, a reminder that the struggle raged on even when its entrance strains are actually a whole lot of kilometers away.

Zelinskiy stated at a press convention with Duda that 50-100 Ukrainians are dying day-after-day on the struggle’s japanese entrance in what seemed to be a reference to navy casualties.

Russia is waging a serious offensive in Luhansk, one in every of two provinces in Donbas, after ending weeks of resistance by the final Ukrainian fighters within the strategic southeastern port of Mariupol.

The heaviest preventing centered across the twin cities of Sievierodonetsk and Lysychansk, inside ministry adviser Vadym Denysenko informed Ukrainian tv on Sunday.

The cities kind the japanese a part of a Ukrainian-held pocket that Russia has been making an attempt to overrun since mid-April after failing to seize Kyiv and shifting its focus to the east and south of the nation.

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Russian shelling and “heavy fighting” close to Sievierodonetsk has continued, however the invading forces didn’t safe the close by village Oleksandrivka, a Ukrainian navy assertion stated.

Russia’s protection ministry stated on Sunday its forces pummeled Ukrainian command facilities, troops and ammunition depots in Donbas and the Mykolaiv area within the south with air strikes and artillery.

Reuters was unable to independently confirm these battlefield experiences.

Russian-backed separatists already managed components of Luhansk and neighboring Donetsk earlier than the invasion, however Moscow needs to grab the remaining Ukrainian-held territory within the area.

An explosion severely injured a Russian-appointed mayor within the city of Enerhodar, Russia’s RIA information company reported. Reuters couldn’t instantly set up what brought on the explosion.

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Ukraine’s lead negotiator, Zelenskiy adviser Mykhailo Podolyak, dominated out any territorial concessions and rejected requires a right away ceasefire, saying it meant Russian troops would keep in occupied territories, which Kyiv couldn’t settle for.

“The (Russian) forces must leave the country and after that the resumption of the peace process will be possible,” Podolyak stated in an interview with Reuters on Saturday, referring to requires a right away ceasefire as “very strange.”

Concessions would backfire as a result of Russia would use the break in preventing to return again stronger, he stated.

Recent requires a right away ceasefire have come from U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi.

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The finish of preventing in Mariupol, the most important metropolis Russia has captured, gave Putin a uncommon victory after a collection of setbacks in practically three months of fight.

The final Ukrainian forces holed up Mariupol’s huge Azovstal steelworks have surrendered, the Russian protection ministry stated on Friday. While Ukraine has not confirmed a full withdrawal, the commander of one of many items within the manufacturing facility, stated in a video that Ukraine’s navy command had ordered the troops there to face down so as to protect their lives.

Full management of Mariupol provides Russia command of a land route linking the Crimean Peninsula, which Moscow seized in 2014, with mainland Russia and components of japanese Ukraine held by pro-Russia separatists.

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Russian state fuel firm Gazprom stated on Saturday it had halted fuel exports to Finland, which has refused Moscow’s calls for to pay in roubles for Russian fuel after Western nations imposed sanctions over the invasion.

Most European fuel provide contracts are denominated in euros or {dollars} and final month Moscow lower off Bulgaria and Poland after they rejected the brand new phrases.

Along with sanctions, Western nations have stepped up weapons provides and different assist to Ukraine, together with a brand new $40 billion bundle from the United States.

Moscow says Western sanctions and the arms deliveries for Kyiv, quantity to a “proxy war” by Washington and its allies.

Putin calls the invasion a “special military operation” to disarm Ukraine and rid it of radical anti-Russian nationalists. Ukraine and its allies have dismissed that as a baseless pretext for the struggle, which has killed hundreds of individuals in Ukraine, displaced tens of millions and shattered cities.

(Reporting by Natalia Zinets, Max Hunder, Tom Balmforth in Kyiv, David Ljunggren in Ottawa, Lidia Kelly in Melbourne, Ron Popeski and Reuters bureaux; Writing by Richard Pullin, Doina Chiacu, Tomasz Janowski and Lawrence Hurley; Editing by Frances Kerry, Frank Jack Daniel and Daniel Wallis)



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