Russia-Ukraine latest updates: Russia says warship has sunk

  • Russia’s defence ministry says its Black Sea warship the Moskva has sunk after an explosion and fire, state media reported, hours after Ukraine claimed it struck the warship with two missiles.
  • Russia earlier said it had contained a fire on the ship which broke out after ammunition blew up on board.
  • Moscow warns NATO against accepting Sweden and Finland’s memberships, saying there could be no more talk of a “nuclear-free” Baltic.
  • Ukrainian officials claim at least four people have been killed in the eastern city of Kharkiv amid increasing Russian bombings.
  • Russia says Black Sea flagship Moskva has sunk

    Russia’s defence ministry has said the missile cruiser Moskva, the flagship of Russia’s Black Sea fleet, sank as it was towed back to port in stormy weather following an explosion and fire, Russian news agencies reported.

    “While being towed … towards the destined port, the vessel lost its balance due to damage sustained in the hull as fire broke out after ammunition exploded. Given the choppy seas, the vessel sank,” the state-owned TASS news agency quoted the ministry as saying.

    The defence ministry had said earlier on Thursday that the Soviet-era ship had been badly damaged by the fire, which Ukraine said was a result of its missile strike.

    503 civilians killed in Ukraine’s Kharkiv region, governor says

    At least 503 civilians have been killed in Ukraine’s eastern Kharkiv region since Russia launched its invasion on February 24, the local governor has said.

    France to transfer French embassy in Ukraine back to Kyiv

    France will “very soon” transfer back its embassy in Ukraine to Kyiv from Lviv, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba in a phone call.

    Putin tells Europe: You still need Russian gas but we’re turning east

    President Vladimir Putin has said that Moscow would work to redirect its energy exports eastward as Europe tries to reduce its reliance on them, adding that European nations would not be able to ditch Russian gas immediately.

    While the EU debates whether to slap sanctions on Russian gas and oil and member states seek supplies from elsewhere, the Kremlin has been forging closer ties with China, the world’s top energy consumer, and other Asian countries.

    “The so-called partners from unfriendly countries concede themselves that they won’t be able to make do without Russian energy resources, including without natural gas, for example,” Putin told a televised government meeting.

    “There is no rational replacement [for Russian gas] in Europe now.”

    Russia says 7 army facilities in Ukraine destroyed in the past 24 hours

    Russian aviation has destroyed seven military facilities in Ukraine in the past 24 hours, including an artillery missile depot, Interfax news agency quoted the Russian defence ministry as saying.

    Ukraine rejects Russian claim of attacks on border region

    Ukraine has rejected claims by Moscow that Ukrainian forces carried out attacks along the border between the countries, including an air raid that Russia said left seven people wounded.

    Russia’s investigative committee said the incident involved two combat helicopters “equipped with heavy offensive weapons” that had “illegally” entered Russian airspace.

    ICC will keep asking Russia to engage with Ukraine war crimes probe

    International Criminal Court Prosecutor Karim Khan has said he would keep trying to get Russia to engage with his war crimes investigation in Ukraine.

    Speaking at a briefing in Kyiv after visiting a town in the region where Ukraine says atrocities were committed against civilians under recent Russian occupation, Khan said: “I’ll keep trying to approach, for the third time, the Russian Federation.”

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