Live Updates | Macron vows to continue supporting Ukraine

PARIS — French President Emmanuel Macron has conveyed to Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelenskyy his “desire to work actively to restore Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity during his second term,” in coordination with allies, the Elysee presidential palace says.

Macron assured Zelenskyy in their hour-long conversation on Saturday that “military materiel” and humanitarian assistance would continue to flow into Ukraine, the Elysee said.

France has so far sent 615 tons of equipment and aid, including generators for hospitals, ambulances and food. France has been coy about contributing defensive weapons, but Macron recently mentioned Milan anti-tank missiles and a delivery of truck-mounted Caesar guns among “consequential equipment.”

“This support will continue to grow stronger,” the French president told Zelenskyy, according to Elysee.

Macron was re-elected president of France six days ago. During his first term in office, Macron had numerous talks with both Zelenskyy and Russian leader Vladimir Putin since the invasion of Russia on February 24.



— Ukrainian forces fight Russia’s advance in Donbass

— The wives of the defenders of Mariupol call for the evacuation of the soldiers of the final resistance

— Ukrainians return to cross the front line towards their homes despite the dangers

— Ukrainian women learn to clear landmines after taking refuge in Kosovo

Follow all AP stories on Russia’s war against Ukraine at



LVIV, Ukraine — Russia’s foreign minister says Moscow has evacuated more than 1 million people from Ukraine since the war there began.

Saturday’s comments by Sergey Lavrov in an interview with the Chinese state news agency Xinhua come as Ukraine accused Moscow of forcibly expelling Ukrainians from the country. Lavrov said that figure included more than 300 Chinese civilians.

Lavrov offered no evidence to support his claim in the interview.

Lavrov also said that negotiations continue between Russia and Ukraine “almost every day.” However, he warned that “progress has not been easy.”

Lavrov partly blamed “bellicose rhetoric and incendiary actions by Western supporters of the kyiv regime” for disrupting the talks. However, Russian state television has had guests suggesting that Moscow use nuclear weapons in the conflict.


LVIV, Ukraine — The British military believes Russian forces in Ukraine are likely to suffer from “weakened morale.”

The British Ministry of Defense made that assessment in a tweet on Saturday as part of a daily briefing it provides on Russia’s war in kyiv.

He says Russia “still faces considerable challenges” in the fight. The British Army believes that Russian forces “have been forced to amalgamate and redeploy disparate units depleted from failed advances in northeastern Ukraine.”

He did not provide information on how he arrived at this assessment. However, analysts believe that Russian forces that failed to take kyiv at the start of the war have been redeployed without the time to properly rearm and resupply.

The British believe that Russia hopes to reorganize its efforts and shorten supply lines.

The ministry added: “Lack of unit-level skills and inconsistent air support have left Russia unable to fully exploit its combat mass, despite localized improvements.”


WASHINGTON — A senior US defense official said Friday that the Russian offensive is going much slower than planned, in part because of the strength of the Ukrainian resistance.

“We also assess that due to this slow and uneven progress, again, without perfect knowledge of all aspects of the Russian plan, we believe and assess that they are behind in what they were trying to achieve in the Donbas,” the official said. official. he said, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss the US military’s assessment.

He said the United States believes the Russians are “at least several days behind where they wanted to be” as they try to encircle Ukrainian troops in the east.

As troops try to move north out of Mariupol so they can advance on Ukrainian forces from the south, their progress has been “slow and uneven, and certainly not decisive, in any case,” the official said.


KYIV, Ukraine — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has accused Russia of trying to destroy the Donbas and everyone who lives there.

“The constant brutal shelling, the constant Russian attacks on infrastructure and residential areas show that Russia wants to empty this territory of all people. So the defense of our land, the defense of our people, is literally a fight for life,” he said Friday night in his late-night video address to the nation.

He said that the cities and towns of Donbas will survive only if Ukraine remains standing. “If the Russian invaders can carry out their plans, even partially, then they have enough artillery and aircraft to turn the entire Donbas to stone. As they did with Mariupol.

Zelenskyy said that Mariupol, once one of the most developed cities in the region, was now a “Russian concentration camp among the ruins.”

In Kharkiv, a major city to the north, the situation was “brutal”, but Ukrainian troops and intelligence agents “have had significant tactical successes”, he said without elaborating.

Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov said about 20% of the city’s residential buildings have been so damaged that it will be impossible to restore them.

Zelenskyy said rescuers were still sorting through the rubble in kyiv after Thursday’s missile strikes. He expressed his condolences to the family of Vira Hyrych, who was killed in the shelling. He said that she was the 23rd journalist to be killed in the war.


DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov appears to have dismissed the need for the United Nations to help secure humanitarian corridors out of Ukraine’s besieged cities, taking a hard line a day after the UN chief toured war-torn kyiv with the same message. point.

When an interviewer from Saudi-owned Al-Arabiya TV tried to ask Lavrov about UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’s proposals for humanitarian assistance and civilian evacuation, Lavrov cut him off.

“There is no need. I know, I know,” Lavrov said irritably. “There is no need for anyone to provide help to open humanitarian corridors. There is only one problem…Ukrainian ultranationals are ignoring humanitarian corridors,” he said.

“We appreciate the interest of the secretary general to help,” he added. “(We have) explained… what the mechanism is for them to monitor how humanitarian corridors are advertised.”

During the hour-long interview, Lavrov also accused the West of sabotaging Russia’s peace talks with Ukraine. He claimed that thorny negotiations in Istanbul last month had been progressing on issues of Russian territorial claims and security guarantees until Ukrainian diplomats backed down at the West’s urging.

“We are trapped by his desire to play all the time,” Lavrov said. “Because of the instructions given to Washington, from London, from some other capitals, not to speed up the negotiations.”

Asked about the risks of the war spilling over into neighboring Moldova after a series of explosions rocked a separatist border region inside the country, Lavrov struck a sinister tone.

“Moldova should be concerned about its own future,” he said. “Because they are being drawn into NATO.”

Leave a Comment