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Scoop of the weekend: Ukrainians ask global leaders to say No to Putin

Scoop of the weekend: Ukrainians ask global leaders to say No to Putin

Russia

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has called Russian President Vladimir Putin's demands illegitimate and threatening international law and security.

"It is time to call things by their proper names. Putin is demanding that the USA, NATO and the EU recognise Russia's sphere of influence, to which sovereign neighbouring states would belong. But the Cold War ended long ago, and with it the spheres of influence. Putin's demands are illegitimate and threaten international peace and security," he tweeted.

Rally

Around 300 activists took part in the Say No to Putin rally in central Kyiv, which was organized by the Movement of Resistance to Capitulation and Free People NGO. They called on global leaders not to fall for Russia's ultimatums and say no to Putin and his imperial policy.

Visit

Next week, the German Chancellor's foreign policy adviser Jens Ploetner and French Presidential Diplomatic Adviser Emmanuel Bonne will visit Kyiv, the head of the Ukrainian presidential office, Andriy Yermak, has said.

He also discussed the current situation on the Ukrainian border and security issues with US Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Karen Donfried.

USA

Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken had a telephone conversation on Friday, 7 January. They agreed positions ahead of the USA and NATO talks with Russia to be held next week.

"Great call with Secretary Blinken following today's NATO ministerial. Good to know there is a strong sense of solidarity with Ukraine among NATO allies. We coordinated positions of Ukraine and the US ahead of diplomatic engagements with Russia next week, discussed bilateral agenda," he tweeted.

Kazakhstan

An aircraft carrying 33 Ukrainians has left Kazakhstan, Foreign Ministry Dmytro Kuleba has said. The next flights from Nur-Sultan are scheduled for 13 and 16 January.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleh Nikolenko earlier said that 116 Ukrainians were stranded in Almaty because of the cancelled flights.

Security raids

Due to the current situation in Kazakhstan, the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) is taking a number of security measures, including operational ones.

Such measures are taken "especially in view of the Russian factor and probable provocations by the Russian Federation, which can discredit our state in the international arena and harm its interests," it said.

In particular, the SBU is communicating with citizens of Kazakhstan. "That is, there is the usual work within the framework of the current legislation and functional duties of the service," it added.

This is how the SBU commented on reports that on 6 December, unknown persons in civilian clothes "attacked and beat up" a representative of the headquarters of the opposition movement Democratic Choice of Kazakhstan, Zamanbek Tleuliyev, outside his home in Kyiv.

Donbas

A Ukrainian serviceman sustained combat injury in Donbas amid two ceasefire violations by Russia-backed militants, the Joint Forces Operation HQ has said. They fired with 120-mm mortars, anti-tank grenade launchers, anti-tank missile systems and heavy machine-guns near Popasna, 120-mm mortars, mounted grenade launchers and small arms near Katerynivka.

Another Ukrainian serviceman was wounded in Donbas on 8 January when the militants violated the ceasefire five times, four of them with the use of banned heavy weapons.

Iran

National Security and Defence Council Secretary Oleksiy Danilov has said that the shooting down of a Ukrainian UIA flight PS752 near Tehran two years ago was an act of terrorism.

In a commentary to Voice of America, he said: "What happened on 8 January 2020 was an act of terrorism committed against a civilian aircraft."

He expressed disappointment that Iran had refused to cooperate in investigating the tragedy and paying compensation. He pointed out that before and after Iran's missile strikes on that day, the authorities allowed other civilian aircraft to take off.

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