Here is the situation as it stands on Thursday, April 6, 2023:
- Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy made a rare trip outside the country to meet his Polish counterpart and close ally Andrzej Duda in Warsaw. Zelenskyy secured promises of more military support and was awarded Poland’s top honour, the Order of the White Eagle.
- French President Emmanuel Macron said China had a “major role” in finding a path to peace in Ukraine due to its close relationship with Russia as he kicked off a three-day visit to Beijing along with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen.
- Albania, Malta, the United Kingdom and the United States walked out of a United Nations Security Council meeting as Russia’s Commissioner for Children’s Rights Maria Lvova-Belova spoke by video. Lvova-Belova is wanted by the International Criminal Court over the transfer of Ukrainian children to Russia.
- Russia’s announcement that it will station tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus shows that a joint Russia-China statement on the deployment of nuclear weapons was nothing but “empty promises”, according to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
- Russian foreign ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said Moscow would ignore a letter from media groups urging the release of a US reporter accused of spying because the US has not shown the same regard for a Russian pro-war blogger killed by a bomb in St Petersburg.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin told new US Ambassador Lynne Tracy that the US was responsible for the dramatic deterioration in relations between the two countries in a televised speech at the Kremlin.
- Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has discussed Sweden’s NATO bid and developments regarding Ankara’s purchase of F-16 fighter jets with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken.
- The head coach of the Ukrainian freestyle skiing team said a failure to ban Russian and Belarusian athletes from the international competition represents a loss for the country. Ukraine’s government has said its athletes will not be allowed to take part in the Paris 2024 qualifying games if they have to compete against Russians.
- Three people were killed and six wounded in artillery attacks on the towns of Oleksievo-Druzhkivka and Velyka Novosilka in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk region.
- A Ukrainian drone crashed near the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Station, according to Russia’s RIA news agency.
- Ukraine’s president said the situation in the eastern town of Bakhmut is really difficult and that “corresponding decisions” would be taken if Kyiv’s troops were at risk of being encircled by Russian forces.
- Belarus said it will hold a military exercise from April 5-7 at the Brestsky training ground near the border with Ukraine and Poland.
- The US unveiled a new military assistance package worth $2.6bn for Ukraine, which includes three air surveillance radars, anti-tank rockets and fuel trucks.
- Poland promised to supply 14 Soviet-designed MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine and help form a coalition of Western powers to provide warplanes to Ukraine, as it did with battle tanks.
Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies