Ukraine, Briefly

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  • Reports of mass kidnappings and forced deportations of Ukrainians to Russia have been emerging in recent days, as Moscow’s invasion enters its second month, NBC News reported. The Ukrainian foreign ministry said Thursday that Russian soldiers had “forcibly deported” 6,000 people from the besieged city of Mariupol, stripping them of their passports and other documents and transporting them to Russia as “hostages.” Meanwhile, Russia has said it has held “evacuations” of more than 380,000 Ukrainians to its territory.
  • The mayor of the besieged city of Mariupol estimated that “thousands” have died and around 90 percent of 2,600 residential buildings have been destroyed or damaged in the month-old Russian invasion, Radio Free Europe wrote.
  • Russia has reacted angrily to US President Joe Biden’s comments that Russian President Vladimir Putin cannot continue in power, Al Jazeera noted. The White House has attempted to downplay the remarks, saying the US was not calling for a regime change.
  • Russia is considering accepting Bitcoin as payment for oil and gas exports, BBC wrote. According to lawmaker Pavel Zavalny, “friendly” countries might be permitted to pay in cryptocurrency or local currency.
  • Russian and Ukrainian officials agreed Sunday to open a number of humanitarian corridors that will allow people to flee Ukraine, according to the Hill. Individuals from the besieged city of Mariupol and the southeastern port city of Berdyansk will be able to evacuate to Zaporizhzhia via the humanitarian corridors. Meanwhile, Moscow said Sunday it had struck “military targets” in the Ukrainian city of Lviv – near the border with Poland – over the weekend, the Washington Post reported. Officials said the military “destroyed” a large depot, which it said was providing fuel to Ukrainian troops in western Ukraine and Kyiv.

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