LIVE Russia-Ukraine crisis: Nearly 100 children have died since Moscow's attack

Zelensky says Ukraine must recognise it will not join NATO



A woman reacts as she stands outside destroyed apartment blocks following shelling in the northwestern Obolon district of Kyiv on March 14, 2022. Photo: AFP
A woman reacts as she stands outside destroyed apartment blocks following shelling in the northwestern Obolon district of Kyiv on March 14, 2022. Photo: AFP

By Team KT

Published: Tue 15 Mar 2022, 6:43 AM

Last updated: Tue 15 Mar 2022, 11:35 PM

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said late on Monday that negotiations with Russia are to continue on Tuesday.

Zelensky also said he spoke with Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett as part of a negotiation effort to end the crisis with Russia “with a fair peace.”

“Our delegation also worked on this in negotiations with the Russian party,” Zelenskiy said in his nightly video address. “Pretty good, as I was told. But let’s see. They will continue tomorrow.”

Here's the latest of all top developments on March 15:


11:35pm: Polish, Czech, Slovenian PMs arrive in Kyiv

The Polish, Czech and Slovenian prime ministers arrived in Kyiv by train on Tuesday, the first visit by foreign leaders to Ukraine's besieged capital since Russia the attack last month.

"We have to halt this tragedy unfolding in the East as quickly as possible," Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said in a post on Facebook announcing their arrival.

Ukraine had the "unequivocal support" of the European Union, he added.


7:45pm: Nearly 100 children have died since Moscow's attack

Nearly a hundred children have died in the war that followed Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy told Canadian lawmakers on Tuesday.

The southern Ukrainian city of Mariupol was left without means of communication and was nearly running out of food, Zelenskiy said in a virtual address to Canadian lawmakers.

He added that 97 children had been reported dead in total since the war began.


6:30pm: Zelensky says Ukraine must recognise it will not join NATO

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky says the country realizes that it can’t join NATO.

Speaking Tuesday to representatives of the U.K.-led Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF), Zelensky said that “we heard for years about the allegedly open doors” of NATO, but “we have already heard that we won’t be able to join.”

The JEF may consist of Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Sweden and Norway.

Zelensky again urged Western allies to provide Ukraine with warplanes.

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It’s the truth we must recognize, and I’m glad that our people are starting to realize that and count on themselves and our partners who are helping us.


6:25pm: Ukraine parliament extends martial law by a month

Ukraine’s parliament voted on Tuesday to extend martial law for another 30 days from March 26, approving a bill submitted by President Volodymyr Zelenskiy.

The war in Ukraine began on Feb. 24 when Russian President Vladimir Putin launched what he called a “special military operation,” the biggest attack on a European state since World War Two.


5:07pm: 2,000 cars left Ukraine’s Mariupol via humanitarian corridor

A fireman embraces a woman outside a damaged apartment building in Kyiv on March 15, 2022, after strikes on residential areas killed at least two people, Ukraine emergency services said as Russian troops intensified their attacks on the Ukrainian capital. Photo: AFP
A fireman embraces a woman outside a damaged apartment building in Kyiv on March 15, 2022, after strikes on residential areas killed at least two people, Ukraine emergency services said as Russian troops intensified their attacks on the Ukrainian capital. Photo: AFP

Some 2,000 civilian cars have been able to drive out of the besieged southeastern Ukrainian city of Mariupol along a humanitarian evacuation route, the city authorities said Tuesday.

“As of 14:00 (1200 GMT) it is known that 2,000 cars left Mariupol,” the city council said on Telegram, adding that a further 2,000 vehicles were waiting to leave the city.

The statement did not specify how many people left in the vehicles.

Another 160 cars had left the city on Monday, the council has said.


5pm: Italy, US agree over “decisive, united” response to Russia attack

Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi and US national security adviser Jake Sullivan agreed at a meeting on Tuesday that there must be no let up in the response to Russia’s “unjustified” invasion of Ukraine.

“Draghi and Sullivan agreed on the firm condemnation of Russia’s unjustified aggression and the need to continue with a decisive and united response,” Draghi’s office said in a statement after the meeting in Rome.


4:15pm: Russian bombardment of Kyiv kills four

In this handout picture taken and released by the State Emergency Service of Ukraine on March 15, 2022, firemen work to extinguish a fire in a housing block hit by shelling in the Sviatoshynsky district in western Kyiv. Photo: AFP
In this handout picture taken and released by the State Emergency Service of Ukraine on March 15, 2022, firemen work to extinguish a fire in a housing block hit by shelling in the Sviatoshynsky district in western Kyiv. Photo: AFP

Russian air strikes and shelling hit Kyiv on Tuesday killing at least four people, authorities said, as attacking forces tightened their grip on the Ukrainian capital and the mayor announced a 35-hour curfew starting at 8 p.m. (1800 GMT).

Two large blasts echoed across the centre of the city just before dawn on Tuesday. Late on Monday, tracer bullets flashed across the night sky as Ukrainian forces apparently targeted an enemy drone.

“Today is a difficult and dangerous moment,” mayor Vitali Klitschko said.

More details here


4pm: UK slaps heavy tariffs on Russian imports

Britain on Tuesday imposed an additional 35 percent tariff on a swathe of Russian imports, from vodka to steel, and banned exports of luxury goods over Moscow’s attack on Ukraine.

“We want to cause maximum harm to (Russian President Vladimir) Putin’s war machine while minimising the impact on UK businesses,” the Department for International Trade said.

“Russian vodka is one of the iconic products affected by the tariff increases, while the export ban will likely affect luxury vehicles, high-end fashion and works of art.”

More details here


2:53pm: More than three million refugees flee Ukraine war

More than three million people have now fled Ukraine since Russia attacked on February 24, the United Nations said Tuesday.

“We have now reached the three-million mark in terms of movement of people out of Ukraine,” Paul Dillon, spokesman for the UN’s International Organization for Migration, told reporters in Geneva.

More than 1.4 million of these are children, according to the UN children’s agency UNICEF, while 157,000 are third-country nationals, IOM said.

More details here


2:48pm: Red Cross hopes to evacuate civilians from besieged Sumy

The Red Cross is hoping to organise the evacuation of two convoys of some 30 buses with civilians out of the besieged northeastern Ukrainian city of Sumy and their passage to a safe area, a spokesperson said on Tuesday.

Ewan Watson, spokesperson of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), told a U.N. briefing in Geneva that the operation would be carried out with the Ukrainian Red Cross but was not underway yet. He noted there had been delays with similar evacuations from Mariupol, where he said people are “essentially being suffocated in this city now with no aid’.

Some 2.95 million Ukrainians have fled their homeland since Russian forces attacked 20 days ago, including 1.8 million in Poland, U.N. refugee agency spokesperson Matthew Saltmarsh said. Some 300,000 have gone on to Western Europe, he said.


2:45pm: Ukrainian region issues country-wide air raid warning

This Maxar satellite image taken and released on March 10, 2022 shows an overview of fires burning in an industrial area and nearby fields in southern Chernihiv, Ukraine. Photo: AFP
This Maxar satellite image taken and released on March 10, 2022 shows an overview of fires burning in an industrial area and nearby fields in southern Chernihiv, Ukraine. Photo: AFP

The northern Ukrainian region of Chernihiv issued a warning of country-wide air attacks on Tuesday, urging citizens to head to shelters.

It was not immediately clear whether other regions had issued similar warnings of new air strikes by Russian forces that attacked Ukraine on Feb. 24 .

“Attention. Air raid ALL UKRAINE! Take shelter!,” said the warning, shared in an online post.


2:40pm: Kremlin says too early for conclusions on Ukraine talks

The Kremlin said Tuesday it was too soon to draw any conclusions from talks to resolve the conflict in Ukraine as fighting intensified around the capital Kyiv.

“The work is complex, but the very fact that the work is continuing is in itself positive,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.

“We don’t want to give any forecasts. Let’s wait for tangible results,” he said.


2.36pm: Kyiv to impose 36-hour curfew from late Tuesday: mayor

Ukraine’s capital Kyiv will impose a 36-hour curfew from Tuesday night amid a “difficult and dangerous moment” after several Russian strikes, Mayor Vitali Klitschko said.

He added that the curfew will last from 8 pm (1800 GMT) on Tuesday until 7 am (0500 GMT) on Thursday.

Today is a difficult and dangerous moment


1:27pm: Russian forces have been pushed back slightly from Mykolayiv city

Map of Ukraine locating areas where major explosions, strikes and fighting have been reported and under Russian control. Updated as of March 8, 0700 GMT - Photo: AFP
Map of Ukraine locating areas where major explosions, strikes and fighting have been reported and under Russian control. Updated as of March 8, 0700 GMT - Photo: AFP

The governor of Ukraine’s southern region of Mykolayiv said the security situation was calmer in the area on Tuesday because Russian forces had been pushed back slightly from the regional capital, which they have been trying to seize.

In an interview on national television, Governor Vitaliy Kim said Russian troops continued to fire at the city of Mykolayiv and that 80 people were wounded on Monday, including two children.

“You can be 99% sure that Mykolayiv region will continue to hold back the advance of the Russian troops. There is the Bug River, which they need to force their way across in order to advance,” he said. “We will not give up the bridges to the invaders.”


12:52: Kyiv struck by Russian shelling

Ukraine’s capital Kyiv came under Russian bombardment, and images released by the country’s State Emergency Service on Tuesday showed a high-rise apartment block in flames after being struck.

Emergency services said earlier that two people were killed when a residential building was attacked. It was not immediately clear if it was the same block.

More details here


12:30pm: Ukraine confirms Polish, Czech and Slovenian PMs' visit Kyiv

The prime ministers of the Czech Republic, Poland and Slovenia will travel to Kyiv on Tuesday to meet President Volodomyr Zelenskiy, the Ukrainian leader’s office said.

It gave no further details of the planned visit, which had earlier on Tuesday been announced by Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala.

More details here


11.53am: Polish, Czech, Slovenian PMs to Kyiv on Tuesday: statement

The Polish, Czech and Slovenian prime ministers will visit Kyiv on Tuesday to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, the Polish government said in a statement.

“The purpose of the visit is to confirm the unequivocal support of the entire European Union for the sovereignty and independence of Ukraine and to present a broad package of support for the Ukrainian state and society,” the statement said.


11.46am: Ukraine hopes to open 9 humanitarian corridors, get aid to besieged Mariupol

Ukraine hopes to open nine corridors on Tuesday to evacuate civilians trapped by Russian forces and will try to deliver humanitarian supplies to the besieged port of Mariupol, said Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk.

Hundreds of thousands of residents of Mariupol, which has been under constant bombardment, have sheltered in basements and the ruins of buildings without water or power for more than a week. Moscow on Monday allowed the first convoy to escape.

“In the first two hours, 160 cars left,” Andrei Rempel, a representative of the Mariupol city council, told Reuters.


10.14am: Russian strikes hit apartment building in Kyiv

A series of Russian strikes hit a residential neighborhood of Ukraine’s capital on Tuesday, igniting a huge fire and frantic rescue effort in a 15-story Kyiv apartment building. At least one person was killed and others remain trapped inside.

The Ukrainian military said in a statement that the strikes were artillery strikes. They hit the Svyatoshynskyi district of western Kyiv, adjacent to the suburb of Irpin that has seen some of the worst battles of the war.

Flames shot out of the apartment building as firefighters rescued people from ladders. Smoke choked the air.


9.56am: Blasts rock Kyiv as talks with Russia to resume

A series of powerful explosions rocked Kyiv early Tuesday even as talks between Ukraine and Russia were set to resume.

At least three large blasts were heard in the centre of the capital early Tuesday, and an AFP journalist saw a column of smoke rising.

The cause was not immediately clear but Ukrainian MP Lesia Vasylenko tweeted a photograph of smoke coming from a damaged block of flats, with firefighters in attendance.

“Podil district of Kyiv is a place to get coffee and enjoy life. Not anymore. Explosive just hit 30 minutes ago,” she said.


7.38am: Japan imposes new sanctions on Russian billionaire, 16 others

Japan has decided to freeze assets of an additional 17 Russian individuals, bringing the total number targeted by sanctions over Russia's attack on Ukraine to 61, the Ministry of Finance said on Tuesday.

The step was taken after the United States on Friday imposed sanctions on a slew of Russian individuals including billionaire Viktor Vekselberg and 12 members of the Duma, Russia's lower house of parliament.

More details here


6.55am: UN chief says Ukraine crisis hitting poor nations reliant on wheat

The United Nations chief warned Monday that Russia’s war on Ukraine is holding “a sword of Damocles” over the global economy, especially poor developing countries that face skyrocketing food, fuel and fertilizer prices and are now seeing their breadbasket “being bombed.”

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told reporters that “Russia and Ukraine represent more than half of the world’s supply of sunflower oil and about 30 percent of the world’s wheat” and that “grain prices have already exceeded those at the start of the Arab Spring and the food riots of 2007-2008.”

He told reporters that 45 African and least developed countries import at least one-third of their wheat from Ukraine and Russia, and 18 of them import at least 50%. These countries include Egypt, Congo, Burkina Faso, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen, he said.

“All of this is hitting the poorest the hardest and planting the seeds for political instability and unrest around the globe,” Guterres warned, saying the most vulnerable country had already been trying to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic and contend with record inflation, rising interest rates and looming debt before the Ukraine crisis.



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