DShortly before celebrations marking the end of World War II in Moscow, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused his Russian colleague Vladimir Putin of forgetting history. “Russia has forgotten everything that was important to the victors of World War II,” he said in a video message on Sunday evening. Decades after World War II, “evil is back, in a different uniform, but with the same goal”.
Russia celebrates the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany on May 9. On Saturday, the army in Moscow held the dress rehearsal for the 77th anniversary military parade. On Monday, thousands of troops will march through Red Square, followed by tanks, armored vehicles and rocket launchers and accompanied by an air show.
Selenskyj sees great symbolic power in the trips of international celebrities to his country on the anniversary of the end of the world war in Europe. “Today in Ukraine showed that we are already part of the free world and a united Europe,” Zelenskyy said in his daily video address on Sunday evening.
‘It’s an apparent contrast to Moscow’s loneliness in evil and hatred, which everyone will see tomorrow,’ he said, referring to ‘Victory Day’ celebrations over Hitler’s Germany Monday in the Russian capital.
On Sunday, US President’s wife Jill Biden, Bundestag President Bärbel Bas, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and U2 musicians Bono and The Edge, among others, traveled to Ukraine. Zelenskyj also spoke on a conference call with G7 industrialized country heads of government.
04:54 – Wüst: favor the North Rhine-Westphalia industrial site in the event of a gas shortage
Prime Minister Hendrik Wüst (CDU) calls for a preferential supply of industry in North Rhine-Westphalia in the event of a gas shortage in Germany and Europe. “In the event of a gas shortage, the industrial site in North Rhine-Westphalia must continue to be supplied reliably and competitively,” Wüst told the Handelsblatt newspaper.
A halt in production would have serious consequences for downstream industries. “It doesn’t matter whether it’s steel, aluminium, chemicals or glass: these are key industries because they are at the start of long value chains across Germany and Europe. many systems in these industries are irretrievably destroyed if they are not running continuously.
1:43 a.m. – Jill Biden meets Ukrainian first lady at refugee home
The first lady of the United States, Jill Biden, paid an unannounced visit to Ukraine. Biden met with Ukrainian first lady Olena Zelenska at a school used as a shelter for displaced people in the town of Uzhgorod near the Slovakian border, his spokesperson said Sunday. The two hugged and Biden presented Selenska with a bouquet of flowers for Mother’s Day.
According to a US official, it was the first public appearance of the wife of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy since the start of the Russian war of aggression on February 24. As a result, the two women had exchanged letters over the past few weeks.
01:02 – Kishida in Japan – G7 import freeze on Russian oil is okay
Japanese head of state Fumio Kishida supports the ban on imports of Russian oil decided by the seven main Western industrialized countries. “For a country that is heavily dependent on energy imports, this is a very difficult decision. But the coordinated cooperation of the G7 is very important at a time like this,” Kishida said, according to a government statement. Besides Japan, the group of seven major democratic industrial nations includes NATO states, the United States, Canada, France, Great Britain, Italy and Germany.
00:20 – Britain imposes more sanctions on Russia and Belarus
Britain imposed new sanctions on Russia and Belarus, including import duties on precious metals and export bans. “This far-reaching sanctions package will inflict further damage on the Russian war machine,” Trade Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said on Sunday evening. Punitive tariffs on platinum and palladium, among others, affect a total trading volume of 1.4 billion pounds (1.6 billion euros). Export bans on goods worth £250m target Russian industry.
With the new sanctions package, goods worth a total of over £4billion are now subject to import and export sanctions which ‘significantly harm Putin’s war effort’ said Finance Minister Rishi Sunak. As Trevelyan pointed out, the latest round of sanctions was also internationally coordinated.
The G7 countries previously agreed on further punitive measures against Russia, including phasing out Russian oil imports.
00:05 – SPD leader Klingbeil: Putin does not give sovereignty over May 8
SPD leader Lars Klingbeil has warned against giving Russian President Vladimir Putin the power to interpret May 8. “We must not allow Russia to tamper with history. And we must not allow Putin to try to interpret this May 8, but also the war,” he said, referring to the Russian attack on Ukraine. It is therefore right that Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) made it clear in his televised speech “why we stand with the brave Ukrainians these days, these weeks and why we help them”.
In Russia, Victory Day over Nazism will be celebrated on Monday with a military parade and a speech by Putin. He justified the attack on Ukraine by accusing him of wanting to liberate the country from Nazism – but there is no solid proof of this accusation.
11:51 p.m. – UN: More than 170 people evacuated from Mariupol
More than 170 people have been evacuated from Mariupol, in southern Ukraine, under fire from Russian troops for weeks. This was announced by the UN emergency aid coordinator for the country, Osnat Lubrani, on Sunday evening. The evacuees were taken to Zaporizhia, a city in the southeast of the country. So far more than 600 people have been taken from Mariupol, Lubrani said. It was the latest evacuation operation from the tunnel system under the Azovstal steelworks, where Ukrainian fighters are trying to repel Russian attacks. Evacuations are coordinated by the United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross.
11:34 p.m. – Melnyk: We would have liked “much more concrete” of Scholz’s speech
Ukrainian Ambassador Andriy Melnyk said he was disappointed with Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s televised speech on the anniversary of the end of World War II in Europe. In the speech, one would have liked “much more concrete information” on how the Bundestag’s decision on the delivery of heavy weapons should be implemented, Melnyk said on Sunday in the ARD program “Anne Will”. “Unfortunately, we haven’t heard much new.”
Melnyk called the German government’s commitment to deliver seven self-propelled howitzers – modern artillery systems – to Ukraine a “good decision”. At the same time, he made it clear that he expected much more. “When you hear the Federal Chancellor say that Russia must not win, it means that everything, absolutely everything must be done (…) to help us in this difficult situation, in this war, the worst war since the Second World War,” he added. asked the diplomat.
Melnyk said that Hitler’s Germany could only be defeated because the United States and other countries provided the Soviet Union with thousands of planes and tanks under the Loan Act. lease. “And we are talking about seven self-propelled howitzers and no other prospects.” Further “historic decisions” by the Bundestag and the federal government would be important to help with whatever Ukraine needs.
Scholz addressed European citizens on Sunday to mark the anniversary of the end of World War II and underlined German support for Ukraine, which was attacked by Russia. Not helping Ukraine in the fight against the aggressor would mean “surrendering to pure violence”.
11:25 p.m. – Bulgaria also asks for an exception to the EU oil embargo
After Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic, Bulgaria is also asking for an exception to the Russian oil embargo planned by the EU. Otherwise, Bulgaria will veto it, Deputy Prime Minister Assen Vasilev told Bulgarian TV channel BNT. An exception is needed because Bulgaria’s Burgas refinery needs time to expand its desulfurization if it only processes non-Russian oil. Half of the oil processed there still comes from Russia. Given ongoing talks with the EU over the matter, he doesn’t think Bulgaria will ultimately have to veto it, Vasilev said.