Russia is closed to European leaders and influencers

We no longer pass. Russia banned this Thursday the entry into its territory of the main European leaders and the majority of MEPs, in reaction sanctions against moscow for his invasion of the Ukraine.

No name has been proposed. But in response to these sanctions and in line with those taken by Moscow recently, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the move was aimed at “several European commissioners, heads of European military corps, as well as the vast majority of deputies of the European Parliament, political leaders of member countries of the Union”, as well as public figures and journalists who “have supported illegal sanctions against Russia or incited Russophobia”.

A misinformed president

As fighting continues in Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin is said to have “vastly misjudged” Ukraine’s resistance, the strength of its army and the economic fallout from its invasion, US and British intelligence said in two reports on Thursday. evaluations made public a few hours ago. Besides. Jeremy Fleming, director of GCHQ, the British electronic intelligence services, even believes that the master of the Kremlin is “deceived” by advisers who “are afraid to tell him the truth”. To the point that Joe Biden, the US president, stated on Thursday night that Vladimir Putin “would have put some of his advisers under house arrest”, without further details.

If the Russian army has been bogged down for five weeks as a result in Ukraine, a reduction in military pressure does not appear to be on the agenda, despite Tuesday’s announcements that had sparked a wave of hope in international financial markets. The Russian army is in the process of ‚Äúregrouping its forces to attack and put the maximum forces in the northeastern part of the country from Kharkiv to Lugansk and Mariupol, estimates the Ukrainian army.

Similarly, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg believes that Russian forces will not withdraw from the areas they occupied but will regroup for an offensive in Donbass, while keeping pressure on kyiv, especially through bombing. The Institute for the Study of War (ISW), a US think tank, also judges that Russian forces “hold their ground” and continue to dig in around the capital, facing limited Ukrainian counterattacks. According to the Pentagon, Russian bombing, by aviation or artillery, would have doubled on Thursday compared to previous days.

goodbye to chernobyl

On the other hand, Russian forces began to withdraw from the Chernobyl nuclear site they had taken control of on the first day of the invasion of Ukraine on February 24. The Russian army would also have evacuated the strategic Gostomel airport near kyiv, according to Washington.

On the diplomatic front, negotiations between the Russian and Ukrainian delegates will resume this Friday. Vladimir Medinsky, the head of the Russian negotiators, estimated that “for the first time, the Ukrainian side has shown a willingness to accept the most important conditions” set by Moscow, namely the renunciation of joining NATO, acquiring nuclear weapons and take a neutral stance. condition.

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