Russia announced on Monday evening that it would establish local ceasefires in several Ukrainian cities from 07:00 GMT (2:00 am in Quebec) on Tuesday to allow the evacuation of civilians through humanitarian corridors, following new negotiations with the Ukrainians.
“The Russian Federation is announcing a ceasefire from 10:00 am Moscow time on March 8,” says the cell of the Russian Ministry of Defense for the evacuation of civilians from Kyiv, as well as in the cities of Sumi, Kharkiv, Chernikiv and Mariupol. Responsibility for humanitarian operations in Ukraine has been cited by Russian news agencies.
The Ukrainian side noted the “some positive results” previously obtained during negotiations on humanitarian corridors.
But the Russian military continued its offensive and bombings, particularly in the wake of the Ukrainian relief, which resulted in thirteen deaths in a strike at an industrial bakery in Makhri, one of the main axes leading from the west of Ukraine. Kiev
Provoked on the twelfth day of the invasion Vladimir PutinThe Russian military has continued its advance towards the capital, which is expected to launch an offensive “in the coming days,” the Ukrainian Interior Ministry said.
Kiev’s mayor, former boxing champion Vitaly Klitschko, has vowed to “oppose every house, every street, and every checkpoint until it dies if necessary.”
The humanitarian situation is also deteriorating day by day, with many cities under siege running out of food.
In Ukraine, “the UN needs safe havens to provide humanitarian assistance in war-torn areas.” UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Martin Griffiths was attacked at the Security Council on Monday.
This is the third session of negotiations dedicated to the evacuation of civilians from the besieged cities, shortly after the conclusion of the Russian and Ukrainian delegations in Belarus on the Polish border.
At the end of these discussions, the Ukrainians talked about “some positive results” in the humanitarian corridors. “We will provide the most effective assistance to the people suffering from the occupation of the Russian Federation,” said Mikhail Podoliyak, a member of the Ukrainian delegation.
On key issues related to the ceasefire, he added, “serious negotiations will continue.” At these points, he says, to date “there are no conclusions that could improve the situation.”
For his part, Russian negotiator Vladimir Medinsky felt that this third session did not meet “expectations”.
Moscow established local ceasefires on Monday morning and opened corridors allowing civilians to leave several cities in Ukraine – including Kiev and Kharkiv, the second largest cities in the north – under intense fire for several days.
But Ukraine refused to deport its citizens – four of the six corridors proposed by the Russians went to that country or its neighbor, Belarus.
In an exchange with the President of the European Council Charles Michel, Vladimir Putin accused the Ukrainian nationalist battalions of being an obstacle. [les évacuations] Seeking violence and various provocations. “
French President Emmanuel Macron condemned the “moral and political cynicism” expressed in the Russian plan to provide the Ukrainians with humanitarian corridors to “bring them to Russia.”
Escape by a board
Before coming to Kiev from the west, in Irbine, the last city to escape bombings, 10,000 people marched in recent days, drowning in an impossible wooden plank, half submerged in water. The concrete bridge over the river was destroyed by Ukrainian forces to prevent Russian shields from crossing.
Children, the elderly – some carrying carpets that serve as stretchers – and families abandoning strollers and suitcases to the point where they can no longer rush on buses and vans.
Olga, 48, who went this route with her two dogs, says, “I’m so glad I won and it’s so good now.”
Odessa, on the shores of the Black Sea, is also under increasing threat. Distressed families have handed over their sick elderly parents to the Arkhangelsk Mikhailovsky Monastery, with its domes of gold and gray, so large that they could not leave the port city, the AFP reported. “But we can’t take everyone, alas! It is becoming very difficult to manage and we are running out of money, ”said Mother Seraphim, head of the monastery.
New fighting broke out near Sumi in the Northeast, said Dmitry Zhivitsky, head of the region’s military administration.
Health institutions under attack
Ukrainians are also largely on the path to deportation. According to the UN, the war has already forced more than 1.7 million people to seek refuge in neighboring countries.
Joseph Borel, the head of European diplomacy, estimates that Europe could expect five million deportations if the bombing of cities continued.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has regretted that there have been 16 attacks on health facilities in Ukraine since Russia launched its offensive on February 24.
Ukrainian Education Minister Sergei Scharlet said 211 schools had been damaged in the shelling.
Nearly 100,000 children, half of whom are disabled, live in institutions or boarding schools in Ukraine, were reminded by the UN on Monday of the need to take precautionary measures before deporting them to another country.
The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights said at least 406 civilians had been killed and 801 wounded since the start of the Ukraine invasion, described as Moscow’s “special military operation.” However, UNHCR insists that its estimates may be far below reality.
Russia bans hydrocarbons?
Diplomacy is also seeking to regain its rights in Russia on Thursday with a meeting of Russian foreign ministers, Sergei Lavrov, Ukrainians, Dmitry Kouleba and their Turkish envoy, Mevlut Cavushoklu.
However, hopes of victory are slim, and Vladimir Putin continues to set all Moscow’s demands, especially Ukraine’s militarization, and Kiev’s neutral status as a precondition for any dialogue.
The White House said in a statement Monday after a video conference that US President Joe Biden, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholes and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson had “decided to increase spending” on Russia. .
A possible ban on Russian gas and oil has been mentioned in the case, but Washington said Joe Biden had “made no decision at this stage”.
Russia has warned of the “catastrophic consequences” of such a move on the world market.
The European Union also launched the process on Monday Examining membership applications from Ukraine, Georgia and MoldovaFiled last week, it could further escalate tensions with Moscow.
All three former Soviet republics are stepping foot in the West, realizing that they are being threatened by Russia’s regional claims. Many member states have supported their approach, but the procedure is lengthy and requires the consensus of EU members.