Ukraine marine drone strikes Russia’ Black Sea fleet
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Danish investigators have reported that a “suspicious object” has been found underneath the Nord Stream 2 pipeline in the Baltic Sea.
Vladimir Putin stated that a ship rented by Gazprom, a Russian energy company, discovered an antenna-like object approximately 19 miles from the site where the Nord Stream pipelines had exploded last year.
The Russian leader went on to claim that the object could be an explosive device and warned that another similar explosion could hit the pipelines.
Putin said: “Experts believe that this could be an antenna to receive a signal to detonate an explosive device, which might be put under the pipeline system.”
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Damaged Nord Stream II Baltic pipeline leaks gas into sea (Image: Getty)
Putin ridicules Britain for having to eat Turnips as Western sanctions on Russia ‘fail’
Vladimir Putin mocked Britain for having to eat turnips while failing to bring Russia’s economy to its knees with sanctions.
Speaking to business leaders on Thursday, Russian leader said Western analysts had prophesied that Russia’s store shelves would empty and services collapse as a result of the sanctions, which were imposed in response to his invasion of Ukraine.
The remarks by Putin appeared to be referring to remarks by British farm minister Therese Coffey, who said last month that Britons struggling to get hold of imported tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers in supermarkets could consider more seasonal, home-grown turnips.
However, Russian state media claimed that the country has an abundance of fresh food despite sanctions on the country.
DeSantis sees strategy backfire as Republicans erupt over swipe at Ukraine allies
Ron DeSantis insisted that “becoming further entangled in a territorial dispute between Ukraine and Russia” is not vital for the United States.
Ron DeSantis has angered senior members of the Republican Party after he attackedJoe Biden over the US commitment to Ukraine in its fight against Russia.
DeSantis, 44, is expected to launch a bid in the GOP primaries in the coming weeks but negative reaction in-house could spell trouble for the Florida Governor.
Senator Lindsey Graham, one of the most senior politicians in the party, warned withdrawing support from Ukraine would be more disastrous than Biden’s retreat from Afghanistan.
Graham wrote on Twitter: “When it comes to Putin, you either pay now or pay later.
“Giving in to Putin in Ukraine, in terms of American national security interests, is Biden’s disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan on steroids.”
Russia and US hold call over drone incident to discuss
The call between Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and his US counterpart, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Wednesday focused on the “causes and consequences” of the downing of the US drone, the Russian defence ministry said.
Washington claimed that the drone was struck by a Russian jet, damaging it and forcing US officials to down it in the water.
Shoigu told Austin the incident was “caused by the US actions of non-compliance with the flight restriction zone declared by the Russian Federation.”
The Russian defence minster added: “It is noted that the US flights of strategic unmanned aerial vehicles off the coast of Crimea are provocative in nature, which creates preconditions for the escalation of the situation in the Black Sea area.”
He also said that Russia “will continue to respond to all provocations in a proportionate manner.”
Russian defence minister Sergei Shoigu (Image: Getty)
Putin recruiting football hooligans to fight in Ukraine
The Russian military is now turning to football hooligans to bolster its forces in Ukraine.
Football thugs have been brought in to form their own military company called ‘The Espanola battalion’.
The group has even brought former Russian international footballer Andrey Solomatin, 47, on board.
Stanislav Orlov, the Espanola battalion’s nominal commander, said: “Recently we managed to get separate status. So now we do not belong to any battalions or divisions.
“We have been given approval to create a separate battalion, Espanola.”
On football hooligans, he added: “There are a huge number of them. All over Russia, in fact – in different cities there are different football teams.
“We tell them what we need [and they provide it]”.
Russia is reportedly recruiting football hooligans for a new battalion (Image: East2WestNews)
UK and German air forces intercept Russian aircraft
RAF and German fighter jets intercepted a Russian aircraft near Estonian airspace during the countries’ joint exercise with NATO allies.
The Russian refueling aircraft failed to communicate with Estonian air traffic control, sparking concern amongst Western allies.
This came after another incident involving Russian Su-27 fighter jets and a US military drone over the Black Sea.
Russia’s ambassador to the US, Anatoly Antonov, said today: “The American UAV deliberately and provocatively was moving towards Russian territory with transponders turned off.”
The RAF was engaged in drills with Germany (Image: Getty)
Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad once again backs Vladimir Putin over Ukraine
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has maintained his unwavering support for Russia and Vladimir Putin, falsely claiming Russia is fighting neo-Nazis and “old Nazis” in Ukraine.
In a televised meeting with Putin, Assad accused the West of taking in “old Nazis” and giving them support.
Last year, Syria voted against a UN General Assembly motion condemning the invasion of Ukraine alongside Belarus, North Korea and Eritrea.
China, Iraq, India and Iran were among those to abstain on the issue.
Assad is an ally of Putin (Image: Getty)
Russia accuses US of ‘ directly participating in the war’ after drone incident
Russia has said it will attempt to retrieve parts of a US military surveillance drone that fell into the Black Sea.
Moscow also accused the US of “directly participating” in the war between Russia and Ukraine.
Kremlin Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev told the Rossiya 1 TV channel: “I don’t know whether we will be able to retrieve it or not, but that it has to be done. And we’ll certainly work on it. I hope, of course, successfully.
“Secondly, regarding the drone – the Americans keep saying they’re not taking part in military operations. This is the latest confirmation that they are directly participating in these activities – in the war.”
Nikolai Patrushev (Image: Getty)
Russia military to embark on recruitment drive
Russia’s defence ministry is believed to be launching a recruitment campaign on 1st April aimed at hiring 400,000 professional soldiers for the Russian army.
The ministry has reportedly sent orders to regions outlining the number of military contracts that need to be signed, according to several regional media sources cited by Radio Svoboda. According to the proposal, 10,000 contractors will work in each of the oblasts of Sverdlovsk and Chelyabinsk, while 9,000 people will be hired in Perm Krai. Most of the recruiting will be done by military enlistment centers, and governors will be in charge of carrying out the strategy. According to the Vyorstka outlet, the Russian military recruitment agencies want to make up for the lack of specialized soldiers like tank drivers and artillerymen.
US slams ‘reckless’ Russian jet that ‘bullied’ and knocked drone out the sky
Washington has slammed the “reckless” behaviour of Russian fighter jets over an incident which has seen a US surveillance drone downed over the Black Sea. According to US Pentagon officials, the drone was on a routine mission in international airspace when two Russian jets attempted an intercept. Moscow on the other hand has denied any contact between the two countries’ aircraft, and the Russian defence ministry has stated that the MQ-9 Reaper drone crashed due to a sudden manoeuvre while flying with its transponders turned off.
The US military statement read: “Our MQ-9 aircraft was conducting routine operations in international airspace when it was intercepted and hit by a Russian aircraft, resulting in a crash and complete loss of the MQ-9,”
Russian fighter pilots also repeatedly dumped fuel on the US drone in a “reckless, environmentally unsound and unprofessional manner”, the US military added.
Kremlin officials facing travel curb, according to MoD
Russian “officials and workers have been subject to increasingly severe foreign travel restrictions,” according to the UK Ministry of Defense’s latest intelligence briefing.
The MoD update read: “Employees closer to the centre of power face more severe restrictions; Kremlin officials are banned from all international leisure travel.
“This is a widening of existing measures which date from the Soviet era. Travel restrictions were tightened after the Russian annexation of Crimea in 2014.
“The measures are likely designed to prevent the flight or defection of increasingly disaffected officials.”
Ukraine claims Russian snipers raped a mother and abused a child, 4
As part of the many claims of abuse during the more than one-year invasion, Ukraine has accused two Russian troops of sexually assaulting a four-year-old girl and gang-raping her mother in front of her father.
The incidents were part of a string of sex crimes Russian troops from the 15th Separate Motorized Rifle Brigade committed in four homes in the Brovary district outside of Kyiv in March 2022, according to Ukrainian prosecution files obtained by Reuters.
Xi planning visit to Russia
Xi Jinping, the leader of China, is reported to be planning to visit Russia in the near future, possibly as early as next week. The visit is expected to signal China’s intention to strengthen its relationship with Russia, which may raise concerns among Western nations. Some worry that China could provide Russia with deadly military aid.
Xi Jinping to visit Russia (Image: Getty)
Good morning from London. I’m Tim McNulty, I’ll be bringing you all the latest developments on the war in Ukraine. Please feel free to get in touch with me as I work if you have a story or tips to share! Your thoughts are always welcome.
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