Ukraine willing to be neutral, says Russia wants to split nation: 10 Updates

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The Russian invasion has devastated several Ukrainian cities, caused a major humanitarian crisis and displaced an estimated 10 million people, nearly a quarter of Ukraine’s population. Russia has continued to move additional military units to the Ukraine border and is launching missile and air strikes on Ukrainian forces and military infrastructure, including in the city of Kharkiv, the Ukrainian military said on Sunday night.

Here are the 10 developments in the Ukraine-Russia war:

Ukraine is willing to become neutral and compromise over the status of the eastern Donbass region as part of a peace deal, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said on Sunday, even as another top Ukrainian official accused Russia of aiming to carve the country in two.

In-person talks between Ukrainian and Russian negotiating teams will resume this week, officials said. French President Emmanuel Macron warned against an escalation of “words or actions,” a day after President Joe Biden said Vladimir Putin “cannot remain in power.” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the U.S. doesn’t have a strategy of regime change.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said he wants Russia to move its forces to “compromise territories” he said they occupied before the war, even if that means some remain in the country.

Ukraine has started “small tactical counteroffensives” in the northern Sumy, Kharkiv and Kyiv regions, and in the Kherson area in the south, according to presidential spokesman Oleksiy Arestovych. He said that Russian troops want to encircle the Ukrainian army in eastern Donbas, seize the city of Mariupol, which has been under siege for almost a month, and keep control of the Kherson region.

Emmanuel Macron said he wants to avoid escalation with Russia after Joe Biden called Vladimir Putin a “butcher” and said he couldn’t stay in power.

Ukraine ordered 5,100 light anti-tank weapons from German’s Dynamit Nobel Defence GmbH at a cost of 25 million euros ($27.5 million), Bild am Sonntag reported, citing Andrij Melnyk, Kyiv’s ambassador to Germany.

“As you know, and as you’ve heard us say, repeatedly, we do not have a strategy of regime change in Russia or anywhere else,” the top U.S. diplomat said in Jerusalem.Biden and the White House “made the point last night that quite simply, that President Putin cannot be empowered to wage war or engage in aggression against Ukraine, or anywhere else,” he said at a joint press availability with Israel’s foreign minister.

Ukraine’s energy minister says no leaks of radioactive material have been detected since Russian tanks fired at nuclear power plants in Chernobyl and Zaporizhzhia but that nightmares about a nuclear disaster keep him awake at night.

One of the last remaining passenger train links from Russia into the European Union has been suspended following the departure of the last two Allegro high-speed trains from St. Petersburg to Helsinki.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has praised Russia’s National Guard on the sixth anniversary of its creation. Putin specially addressed the service staff of the National Guard units involved in the military operation in Ukraine.

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