RUSSIA: Amid the ongoing fighting between Russia and Ukraine and Ukrainian claims of the Russian blockade of key grain ports in the land, Russia has announced it had invaded Ukraine’s second-biggest power plant in the eastern Donetsk region.
Russia has deployed its military forces in the southern region, even as Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskky has confirmed that grain export is set to begin soon.
Ukraine claimed it had bombed an important bridge in Southern Ukraine, currently controlled by Russian forces.
Ukraine has expressed determination to secure Kherson amid reports of Russia’s redeployment in the region. Russian forces are said to have attacked Mykolaiv city using rocket launchers, while Zelensky’s forces attempted to occupy a bridge in Dnipro River in Kherson.
Amid such a crisis, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said a telephonic conversation with Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov is imminent. This international contact between two significant superpowers would be the first diplomatic engagement ever since Russian leader Vladimir Putin declared a “special military operation” against Ukraine on February 24.
However, Blinken clarified that it wouldn’t be a “negotiation” in Ukraine. Russia and Ukraine had already settled on a grain export deal from the Black Sea ports after months of wrangling, which now stands compromised due to a surprise military attack in the area even as international grain flow networks are set to be renewed.
Moreover, Russia has also reduced its gas supply to its biggest client, the EU, as Germany said that its supply has dropped to a staggering 20 percent. Russia blamed EU sanctions for the cutbacks as the EU braces itself for more gas restrictions.
Also Read: Ukraine Hopes To Export Food Grains Despite Recent Russian Attack on Odessa Port