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March 20, 2023 – Xi and Putin meet in Moscow as Russia’s conflict in Ukraine continues

Chinese language chief Xi Jinping started a three-day go to to Moscow on Monday, his first since President Vladimir Putin launched his full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

Talks between the 2 leaders lasted greater than 4 hours and the leaders are anticipated to proceed extra formal conferences Tuesday.

Listed below are the newest headlines:

Moscow assembly: In the course of the assembly, Xi instructed Putin that China and Russia have “related targets” and he expressed help for Putin to be reelected. US officers, for his or her half, have been paying shut consideration to the talks. John Kirby, the Nationwide Safety Council communications coordinator, mentioned the US stays involved that Xi would reiterate requires a ceasefire in Ukraine that will solely profit Moscow by permitting Russian forces to stay inside Ukrainian territory.

Tanks delivered: Norway delivered eight Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine, the Norwegian Armed Forces introduced. Coaching for Ukrainian troopers on the tanks is underway in Poland. Final month, Norway introduced its choice to ship the German-manufactured tanks, with Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre noting “a number of allied international locations have additionally accomplished the identical.” In the beginning of February, the Norwegian authorities additionally introduced it had determined to order 54 German Leopard 2 tanks to strengthen its personal protection capabilities which have been anticipated to be delivered in 2026.

Ammunition and assist for Ukraine: Eighteen European nations have agreed to collectively procure ammunition to “assist Ukraine and replenish nationwide stockpiles,” the European Defence Company mentioned in a information launch on Monday. The Biden administration additionally licensed a further $350 million in safety assist, Secretary of State Antony Blinken introduced. The Presidential Drawdown consists of “extra ammunition for U.S.-provided HIMARS and howitzers that Ukraine is utilizing to defend itself, in addition to ammunition for Bradley Infantry Preventing Autos, HARM missiles, anti-tank weapons, riverine boats, and different gear,” Blinken mentioned in an announcement.

For perspective: The US has dedicated greater than $32 billion in Presidential Drawdown funds to help Ukraine since Russia’s invasion started multiple yr in the past.

Newest on Bakhmut: The chief of Russia’s Wagner non-public army group Yevgeny Prigozhin mentioned Monday in an open letter to the Russian protection minister that the mercenary pressure controls round 70% of Bakhmut. A months-long battle continues within the japanese metropolis and earlier this month, Prigozhin acknowledged that the state of affairs was “tough, very tough, with the enemy combating one another for every meter.”

Additionally in the present day:

  • Justice ministers from all over the world met in London to debate ramping up help for the Worldwide Prison Court docket’s efforts to research alleged Russian conflict crimes in Ukraine.
  • Dr. Karen Donfried, the highest State Division official for Europe who has been a key participant within the Biden administration’s strategy to the Ukraine conflict is departing her put up, Blinken introduced on Monday.

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