The United States appears poised to begin a process that would eventually send dozens of its M1 Abrams main battle tanks to Ukraine, US media reportedin a reversal that could have significant implications for Kiev’s efforts to hold off Russian forces.
The move follows reports Tuesday that Berlin had given in to huge international and domestic pressure to announce it would send German-made tanks to Ukraineand allow other countries to do the same.
The decision is to be made official on Wednesday and Chancellor Olaf Scholz is to be questioned in the Bundestag in the morning in a debate likely to be dominated by the tank decision.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said he was confident the alliance would soon find a solution following a meeting with Germany’s defense minister. “At this crucial moment in the war, we need to deliver heavier and more advanced systems to Ukraine, and faster,” Stoltenberg said.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Tuesday Kyiv needs allies to decide whether to supply modern tanks to bolster the country’s defenses against Russia. Zelenskyi said it’s not about five, 10 or 15 tanks, as Ukraine’s needs are greater, but about making final decisions about real deliveries. “When the necessary weighty decisions are made, we will be happy to thank you for each weighty decision,” said Zelenskiy.
Fifteen senior officials have left their posts in Ukraine since Saturday, six of whom have been accused of corruption by journalists and Ukraine’s anti-corruption agency. Deputy head of the Presidential Office of Ukraine Kyrylo Tymoshenko said Tuesday that he had asked Zelenskyy on Monday to relieve him of his duties amid the government’s wave of resignations and layoffs.
Deputy Defense Minister Vyacheslav Shapovalov, in charge of providing troops with food and equipment, also resigned. citing “media allegations” of corruption, which he and the ministry believe are unfounded. Deputy Prosecutor General Oleksiy Symonenko was removed from his post and two deputy ministers resigned from the Ministry of Municipal and Territory Development of Ukraine.
Five regional governors will also be removed from office: Valentyn Reznichenko from Dnipropetrovsk, Oleksandra Starukha from Zaporizhzhia, Oleksiy Kuleba from Kyiv, Dymtro Zhivytskyi from Sumy and Yaroslav Yanushevich from Kherson. Kherson and Zaporizhizhia are two of the regions of Ukraine that the Russian Federation claims to annex.
The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists has set its doomsday clock, is intended to illustrate the existential risks for the world, at 90 seconds to midnight, the clock has not been so close to midnight since it was first introduced in 1947. This is “mainly” due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, they said.
Ukraine has enough coal and gas reserves for the remaining winter months despite repeated Russian attacks on its power system, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said.
Finland’s Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto has signaled a possible pause in talks with Turkey over Finland’s ambitions to join NATO alongside Sweden. what he says is due to the pressure of the upcoming elections in Turkey.
Supporters of the imprisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny gathered in Berlin on Tuesday for a protest to refer to the conditions of detention in Russia where he is being held.
Russia does not plan to rebuild the Azovstal Steel Plant in Mariupol which were the scene of heavy bombardment in the first weeks of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine last year.
Russian football officials met with their Uefa counterparts on Tuesday as they attempt to negotiate Russia’s return to international football in Europe. It has been banned by Uefa and Fifa since the invasion of Ukraine.
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