Ukrainian forces demobilize Russian tanks near the Donetsk frontline

Kremlin war chief Yevgeny Prigozhin said the Ukrainian city Bakhmut was “virtually surrounded” by Russian forces.

In a video published on Friday, the founder of Russia‘s Wagner mercenary force, the president urged Volodymyr Zelensky to withdraw his forces from the city that Wagner has been trying to capture for months.

It comes as Russian President Vladimir Putin told his Security Council they needed to discuss additional “anti-terrorist measures” to protect facilities controlled by law enforcement agencies.

Putin said on Thursday that Russia had suffered a “terrorist attack” in the southern Bryansk region, which borders Ukraineand vowed to crush a sabotage group that had been shooting at civilians.

Ukraine accused Russia of staging a fake “provocation”.

At the same time, foreign ministers for the Quad Group from the United States, IndiaJapan and Australia gathered in New Delhi to condemn Russian threats to use nuclear weapons in the Ukraine war, given such constant warnings from Moscow as “unauthorized”.


China may supply ammunition to Russia, the US warns

US officials have warned that China could step aside and begin supplying Moscow with ammunition, a decision that would change the course of the war by allowing Moscow to replenish its depleted stockpiles.

China is Germany’s top trading partner, and European nations have generally been more cautious than the United States about taking a hard line with Beijing. However, there are signs that could change as global rivalries become increasingly tense.

In a speech to the German parliament on Thursday, Olaf Scholz called on China to “use your influence in Moscow to press for the withdrawal of Russian troops and not to supply arms to the aggressor Russia.”

US President Joe Biden meets with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in the Oval Office of the White House on March 3, 2023 in Washington, DC

(Getty Images)

During brief public remarks on Friday, Scholz said Western allies would support Ukraine “as long as it takes”.

“This is a very, very important year because of the dangerous threat to peace that comes from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,” he said.

President Joe Biden thanked Germany for “critical military support”.

“And I would argue, in addition to the military support, the moral support you have given Ukrainians has been profound,” he said.

Mr. Biden said, “Together we worked in lockstep to provide critical security assistance to Ukraine,” and Mr. Scholz also described the U.S.-German effort as “lockstep.”

Namita SinghMarch 4, 2023 03:40


USA, Germany in “lock step” on Ukraine’s war

US President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz met privately in the Oval Office for more than an hour yesterday after declaring themselves in “locked step” on maintaining pressure on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.

Even their best advisers were left out of the conversation. When the meeting ended, Mr. Biden and Mr. Scholz walked across the hall to the Roosevelt Room, where the American and German officials had mingled.

The US president joked that the two leaders had solved all the world’s problems by themselves, according to a senior administration official, who requested anonymity to describe the closed-door discussions.

US President Joe Biden meets with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC on March 3, 2023

(AFP via Getty Images)

The White House did not say if any agreements were reached or plans were made.

The official readout of the meeting gave few further details, except to say the two leaders discussed the war and “exchanged perspectives on other global issues”.

The call came at a sensitive moment in the conflict. Ukraine and Russia are preparing for spring offensives, which means a steady flow of Western weapons will be essential to Kiev’s success on the battlefield.

Namita SinghMarch 4, 2023 3:23 am


Inside the Ukrainian makeshift hospitals near the front line

In a dingy medical outpost near the front lines of eastern Ukraine, army doctor Viktor fights daily to save lives.

Almost a year after Russia’s invasion, the fighting now boils down to attrition duels of artillery and infantry attacks, with neither side making significant gains.

The costs of the deadly toil are evident to Viktor’s team of seven doctors and six nurses as it toils away, hemmed in by racks of medical supplies and portable heaters, at this “stabilization point” in the Donetsk region, where fighting is fierce.

Joe MiddletonMarch 4, 2023 at 03.00 am


Why alleged cross-border attacks are on the rise ahead of Ukraine’s war

Russia has declared that saboteurs from Ukraine crossed into its territory and attacked border villages, a raid that fueled fears of an escalation in the war as it drags into a second year.

A day after Thursday’s alleged attack, details of what happened remain scarce and conflicting theories about possible perpetrators and their targets are still swirling.

Ukrainian officials have denied involvement and a presidential aide described it as a false flag attack used by the Kremlin to justify the war in Ukraine.

Joe MiddletonMarch 4, 2023 at 02.00 am


The bridge in central Bakhmut was destroyed as the Russians say the Ukrainian city is surrounded

The bridge in central Bakhmut was destroyed as the Russians say the Ukrainian city is surrounded

Joe MiddletonMarch 4, 2023 at 01.00


We have passed the first anniversary of the Ukrainian war – there will not be a second

At present, it is unlikely that any end to the war will be on better terms for Ukraine than what was offered before Russia invaded, writes Mary Dejevsky.

Joe MiddletonMarch 3, 2023 11:59 p.m


Use of nuclear weapons in Ukraine ‘unauthorized’, Quad group says after Putin pulls out of New START deal

The Kremlin’s threats to use nuclear weapons in the continuing war in Ukraine are “impermissible”, foreign ministers of the Quad group said on Friday in New Delhi, in the first condemnation of Moscow’s repeated indications of deploying its nuclear arsenal in Europe.

“We continued to discuss our responses to the conflict in Ukraine and the enormous human suffering it is causing, and agreed that the use or threat of use of nuclear weapons is impermissible,” the Quad – made up of the US, Australia, India and Japan – said in his latest statement when the ministers met on the sidelines of the G20 meeting.

The joint statement by the Quad leaders comes just a day after foreign ministers at the G20 meeting failed to reach a consensus on the war in Ukraine and ended the meeting without any common agreement on the conflict.

Joe MiddletonMarch 3, 2023 at 10 p.m


Germany is trying to buy mothballed Swiss Leopard 2 tanks

Germany wants to buy mothballed Leopard 2 main battle tanks from Switzerland to replace tanks that Berlin and its Western allies are sending to Ukraine, the Swiss government said on Friday.

The Swiss defense ministry said Germany’s defense and economy ministers wrote on February 23 to Swiss Defense Minister Viola Amherd explaining German manufacturer Rheinmetall’s interest in buying Leopard 2 tanks, which the Swiss army does not plan to return to service.

They assured Amherd that the tanks, if purchased, would not be sent to Ukraine and would be used by Germany or its NATO and European partners to fill the gaps in their own stocks created by their donations of tanks to Kiev and to improve the availability of spare parts .

Joe MiddletonMarch 3, 2023 at 21.00


The US Attorney General makes unannounced visits to Ukraine

US Attorney General Merrick Garland made an unannounced visit to Lviv, Ukraine, on Friday at the invitation of Ukraine’s attorney general, a Justice Department official said.

“The prosecutor held several meetings and reaffirmed our determination to hold Russia accountable for crimes committed in its unjust and unprovoked invasion of its sovereign neighbor,” the official said.

Joe MiddletonMarch 3, 2023 7:22 p.m


The US announces a new $400 million military aid package to Ukraine

The United States announced a new military aid package for Ukraine on Friday worth $400 million.

It will primarily consist of ammunition, but for the first time will include tactical bridges to move tanks and armored vehicles.

The bridges could be used by Ukrainian troops trained in “combined arms” warfare, which is the coordinated use of artillery fire, along with tanks and armored vehicle attack movements.

“The assault bridge is critical to combined arms operations. It allows armored vehicles to cross narrow rivers and ditches that would otherwise slow down an entire force,” said Jack Watling, senior research fellow for land warfare at the London-based Royal United Services Institute.

“Importantly, assault bridges are only critical for offensive operations, demonstrating that the United States is preparing Ukraine to continue retaking its territory,” Watling added.

In January, Berlin agreed to send Leopard tanks to Ukraine and said it would work with allies to send more.

German aid to Ukraine was expected to be a big topic when US President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz met at the White House on Friday. Several NATO allies have pledged a range of armored fighting vehicles.

Joe MiddletonMarch 3, 2023 6:17 p.m