On Wednesday, as the Russia-Ukraine conflict entered its 42nd day, the US imposed more sanctions on Moscow, including sanctions against President Vladimir Putin’s daughters Mariya Putina and Katerina Tikhonova.
Following the Bucha massacre in Ukraine, when at least 20 dead in civilian clothing were discovered, the European Union (EU) is considering similar sanctions. Ukraine has accused Russian forces withdrawing in Ukraine of committing war crimes, but the Kremlin has emphatically denied the allegations, calling them “false propaganda.”
The European Union (EU) has proposed a new round of sanctions on Russia, which will be enacted after all 27 member states have unanimously approved them. The sanctions include a ban on Russian coal imports and the exclusion of Russian ships from all European ports.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has lambasted the EU for its unwillingness to cut off Russian energy supplies, claiming that some leaders were more concerned about commercial losses than war crimes.
Germany, Italy, and Austria, all of which rely substantially on Russian energy supplies, have so far resisted calls for such penalties against Putin.
Top updates from the Russian-Ukraine war:
1. The Kremlin said on Wednesday that if Zelenskyy agrees to Moscow’s criteria in the talks with Kyiv, Russia is “interested in terminating military operations” in Ukraine. Recognition of Crimea (which Russia annexed in 2014), legal guarantees that Russia would never join NATO, and independence for the separatist-controlled Donbas region are three of Moscow’s main objectives.
2. Speaking to the Irish Parliament earlier in the day, Zelenskyy stated that he cannot “tolerate any indecisiveness” after “all Russia has done to us” during the continuing war. According to the Ukrainian president, Russia is using hunger as a weapon in the fight and a tool of dominance.
3. In addition to Putin’s daughters, the US imposed new penalties on Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s wife and daughter, as well as members of the country’s security council. Sanctions also prohibit any US citizen from investing in Russia, including through mergers and acquisitions.
4. According to British intelligence, heavy combat and shelling resumed in Ukraine’s beleaguered city of Mariupol. Iryna Vereshchuk, Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister, said authorities will try to evacuate stranded residents through as many as 11 humanitarian corridors, though individuals fleeing the Russian assault must use their own cars.
5. Earlier in the day, European Council President Charles Michel suggested that EU countries should consider ways to grant shelter to Russian troops wanting to leave the battle and reject instructions. In a speech to the European Parliament, Michel stated that Russian soldiers can “down their arms, stop fighting, [and] leave the battlefield” if they do not want to participate in “killing” their Ukrainian “brothers and sisters” and do not want to be criminals.