Ukraine is working with Israel and Turkey to start talks with Russia

The Russian-Ukrainian conflict continued on Sunday as the parties involved worked to negotiate a peaceful solution.

Ukraine is working with Israel and Turkey as mediators to finalize a venue and framework for peace talks with Russia, Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak said Sunday.

“When it’s done, there will be a meeting. I think it won’t take long for us to get there,” he told national television.


Explosions and penalties

Explosions were heard in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv on Sunday around 06:00 a.m. local time (0400 GMT).

Earlier in the day, air raid alerts were raised in Lviv at 3:30 a.m. local time as residents rushed to bomb shelters for safety.

The governor of Ukraine’s Lviv region said 35 people were killed and 134 injured in an attack on the Yavoriv military facility. The facility was “hit by a Russian airstrike”, Ukrainian government news agency Ukrinform reported.

There was no confirmation from the Russian side.

Russian troops have destroyed 3,687 Ukrainian military infrastructure so far, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov was quoted by Russian news agencies as saying on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Saturday that the country would issue individual sanctions against the West in the near future.

Foreign sanctions froze about $300 billion of the $640 billion Russia had in its gold and currency reserves, according to Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov as the European Council decided to hold a meeting on Monday extraordinary devoted exclusively to the Ukrainian crisis.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson will also host leaders of countries on Russia’s northwest flank next week to discuss the situation in Ukraine.

At an informal meeting on Thursday and Friday in Versailles, France, leaders of European Union (EU) member states agreed to step up sanctions pressure on Russia and pledged to “continue to provide coordinated political, financial, material and humanitarian support”. to Ukraine.

Humanitarian corridors continue to open

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a video address on Sunday that nearly 125,000 people have been evacuated through humanitarian corridors from conflict areas in Ukraine.

“Today the main task is Mariupol,” he said, adding that a humanitarian supply convoy was now just 80 kilometers (50 miles) from the beleaguered port city where more than 400,000 people are. trapped.

Ukraine on Friday established 12 humanitarian corridors in four regions to allow civilians to leave conflict-torn areas, Ukrainian state news agency Ukrinform reported, citing Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk.

Nearly 2.6 million people have fled Ukraine to other countries, according to the latest UN data.

With the war in Ukraine now in its third week, UN Under-Secretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs Rosemary DiCarlo warned the Security Council on Friday that direct attacks on civilians and civilian objects are prohibited by international law and may constitute war crimes.

Humanitarian assistance is being scaled up in areas where security permits and has reached more than 500,000 people, she said.

(With the contribution of the agencies)

(Cover: Rescue workers stand near a heavily damaged building, Kharkiv, Ukraine, March 13, 2022. /Reuters)

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