Russian missiles hit Ukraine towns, apartment building, nine killed

Russian drones attacked Ukrainian cities and rockets blew up an apartment block, but a months-long ground attack on the eastern city of Bakhmut could stall in the face of stiff resistance, Ukrainian and British military experts say.


* At least nine people died in Russian airstrikes, which Ukrainian President Zelenskyy said show Moscow is not interested in peace.

* In a show of defiance, Zelenskyy’s office released a video in which he presented medals to troops it said were near the Bakhmut front line.

* British military intelligence said there was a possibility the Russian attack on Bakhmut might lose momentum.

* The Russian-backed government in Sevastopol suspended ferry services around the Crimean port shortly after its governor said air defenses repelled a Ukrainian drone strike.

* Reuters could not immediately verify battlefield reports.


* Peace plans and pipelines: what came out of the Putin-Xi talks?

* Putin and Xi discussed a major new infrastructure project, Power-of-Siberia 2, to deliver gas to China via Mongolia. However, Russia is still awaiting an agreement and China has strong leverage to secure favorable pricing terms. China is not expected to need additional gas supplies until after 2030.

* During his two-day visit, Xi made little mention of the Ukraine conflict, other than that China has an “impartial position.”

* US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said China is monitoring the global response to the invasion “very closely” but has not yet crossed the line of providing lethal aid to Moscow.

* Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said the West opposes the independence of Russia and China and will try to break Russia up into smaller and weaker states in the coming decades. He said Ukraine is part of “Greater Russia” and sees no prospects for a revival of Russia’s relations with the West in the near future.


* Turkish President Erdogan said he would have a phone call with Putin in two to three days to discuss the Black Sea grain export deal for Ukraine and Russia, Anadolu News Agency reported.

* Rebuilding Ukraine’s economy is expected to cost $411 billion, 2.6 times Ukraine’s expected gross domestic product for 2022, according to an international study.

* The spiritual leader of the world’s Orthodox Christians said Russia’s powerful Orthodox Church was partly responsible for the conflict in Ukraine.

(Compiled by Reuters editors)


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