NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg speaks during a media conference ahead of a NATO summit at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Wednesday, March 23, 2022. —
It has been one month since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine on 24 February.
Fighting has forced millions of Ukrainians to flee their homes and more than 3.5 million to leave the country, with thousands of people killed or wounded and widespread damage in the wake of shelling and aerial bombardments.
Here are the latest developments as leaders meet in Europe to discuss the crisis.
Key updates on Thursday:
The content of the article:
- 1 Key updates on Thursday:
- 2 UK announces further 65 sanctions against Russian businesses and elites
- 3 NATO leaders gather at summit to discuss Ukraine and defence strategy
- 4 At least 4 dead and 6 injured in bombing near Luhansk
- 5 Half of Ukrainian children displaced due to war, Unicef says
- 6 NATO not simply a geographic alliance, Canada’s Trudeau says
- 7 ‘We have to double our efforts’, Estonia PM says
- 8 Ukraine says it destroyed Russian landing ship
- 9 Putin has made a big mistake, Stoltenberg says ahead of NATO summit
- Western leaders will meet during three summits on Thursday, with NATO, the G7 and EU all set to discuss the war in Ukraine.Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for global protests as he marked one month since Russia began its invasion of Ukraine.US President Joe Biden has arrived in Brussels for meetings with western allies and will join an EU summit later in the day.NATO will bolster its eastern flank amid the war in Ukraine; it said Russian troops likely suffered up to 15,000 casualties.The UN General Assembly will vote on a resolution blaming Russia for the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine.
UK announces further 65 sanctions against Russian businesses and elites
The UK foreign secretary announced a further 65 sanctions against Russian businesses, banks and elites.
Liz Truss announced sanctions against «key industries supporting Russia’s illegal invasion».
«Putin should be under no illusions – we are united with our allies and will keep tightening the screw on the Russian economy to help ensure he fails in Ukraine. There will be no let-up,» Truss said in a statement.
The new companies sanctioned include Russian Railways and defence company Kronshtadt, the main producer of Russian drones. Six additional banks were also included in the sanctions as well as the world’s largest diamond producer.
It brings the number of businesses and individuals sanctioned by the UK since the beginning of the invasion to over 1,000, the government said.
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NATO leaders gather at summit to discuss Ukraine and defence strategy
The leaders of NATO’s 30 member states gathered in Brussels on Thursday where they are set to discuss the crisis in Ukraine.
The are expected to agree to strengthen NATO’s defence and increase forces in the east.
«We must reset our deterrence and defence for the longer-term,» said Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg.
They will be addressed by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy who said he is expecting «serious steps» at the NATO summit, which will be followed by meetings of the G7 and EU later today.
NATO heads of state pose for a group photo during an extraordinary NATO summit at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Thursday, March 24, 2022. AP Photo/Thibault Camus10:35
At least 4 dead and 6 injured in bombing near Luhansk
At least four people died, including two children, and six others were injured in Russian strikes in a town near Luhansk in eastern Ukraine, according to the governor of the region, Serhiy Gaidai.
He added that the toll was likely to «turn out to be much higher», accusing the Russian troops are using heavy weapons because they can’t move forward.
Half of Ukrainian children displaced due to war, Unicef says
More than half of Ukrainian children have been displaced due to the war in Ukraine, Unicef has said.
Around 4.3 million children — more than half of the country’s estimated child population of 7.5 million — have been displaced in the month since the war started.
NATO not simply a geographic alliance, Canada’s Trudeau says
NATO is not just «a geographic alliance», but also one that believes in the rule of law and democracy, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau said.
He said NATO was united in showing Putin that he had committed an error by invading Ukraine.
‘We have to double our efforts’, Estonia PM says
«We have to double our efforts,» said Estonia’s Prime Minister Kaja Kallas as she arrived at the NATO summit on Thursday, emphasising that «Putin cannot win this war.»
She said that NATO needed to discuss ways to increase defence spending and how to do so wisely.
Ukraine says it destroyed Russian landing ship
Ukraine’s navy on Thursday reported destroying Russia’s large landing ship, Orsk, near the port city of Berdyansk.
A short Facebook statement about the ship was accompanied with photos and videos of fire and thick plumes of smoke in the port.
The Russian military has not commented on what happened to the ship.
Berdyansk has been under Russian control since 27 February.
Putin has made a big mistake, Stoltenberg says ahead of NATO summit
«President Putin has made a big mistake,» NATO secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg said as he arrived at a NATO summit meeting.
Stoltenberg said Putin underestimated the strength of the Ukrainian people.
He added that use of chemical weapons would change the conflict, saying it would be a «catastrophe».
Stoltenberg said NATO was «facing the most serious security crisis in a generation» and that allies needed to invest more in defence.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy will address NATO allies at the summit today.
Additional sources • AP, AFP