Russia-Ukraine war live: EU reaches partial agreement on Russian oil embargo; Moscow to halt gas supplies to Netherlands | Ukraine


EU leaders agree to ban more than two-thirds of oil imports from Russia

After hours of last-minute negotiations – and failure to come to agreement – European Union leaders have agreed to ban more than two-thirds of of all Russian oil imports.

The ban, which President Zelenskiy spent Monday advocating EU leaders for as a show of unity against Vladimir Putin, was heavily resisted by Hungary. Earlier compromises included exempting Russian oil transported through the Soviet-era Druzhba pipeline for Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia from the EU embargo.

While the ban will put the “maximum pressure on Russia to end the war”, as Charles Michel, president of the European Council, said on Twitter, it will also probably result in a hike in the already high gas prices across Europe, which is heavily reliant on Russian oil.

#Unity

Agreement to ban export of Russian oil to the EU. 

This immediately covers more than 2/3 of oil imports from Russia, cutting a huge source of financing for its war machine. 

Maximum pressure on Russia to end the war. 

#EUCO

— Charles Michel (@eucopresident) May 30, 2022

This sanctions package includes other hard-hitting measures:

de-Swifting the largest Russian bank Sberbank,

banning 3 more Russian state-owned broadcasters,

and sanctioning individuals responsible for war crimes in #Ukraine#EUCO

— Charles Michel (@eucopresident) May 30, 2022

We agreed in Versailles to phase out our dependency on Russian gas, oil & coal as soon as possible.

But this requires a plan: This is #REPowerEU.

It has 4 pillars:

• Saving energy
• Diversifying away from 🇷🇺 fossil fuels
• Massive investment in renewable energy
• Financing pic.twitter.com/mCKJkByFKu

— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) May 30, 2022

Here is a succinct rundown of tonight’s agreement on a sixth package of sanctions against Russia.

“The sanctions will immediately impact 75% of Russian oil imports. And by the end of the year, 90% of the Russian oil imported in Europe will be banned,” president of the European Council, Charles Michel, has said.

Just one hour ago, EU leaders backed a partial embargo on Russian oil after late-night talks at a summit in Brussels.

The deal “immediately covers more than two-thirds of oil imports from Russia” with the aim to effectively cut around 90% of oil imports from Russia to the EU by the end of the year, officials said.

Michel hailed the deal as a “remarkable achievement” that would place “maximum pressure on Russia to end the war”.

Tonight #EUCO agreed a sixth package of sanctions.

It will allow a ban on oil imports from #Russia.

The sanctions will immediately impact 75% of Russian oil imports. And by the end of the year, 90% of the Russian oil imported in Europe will be banned. pic.twitter.com/uVoVI519v8

— Charles Michel (@eucopresident) May 30, 2022

Russian oil ban is ‘remarkable achievement’, EU President says

EU leaders have addressed reporters following the announcement of a partial ban of Russian oil imports to the 27-nation bloc.

European Council President Charles Michel described the decision to ban almost 90% of all Russian oil imports by the end of the year as a “remarkable achievement” and addressed speculation of disunity within the EU leading to the agreement.

Speaking to the media late on Monday night, Michel said:

This is a remarkable achievement by the European Council.

We do not underestimate all the difficulties. We know that we needed a few weeks before we were able to take a decision.

In the recent hours and recent days there was speculation about a lack of European unity and I think that more than ever it is important to show that we are able to be strong, that we are able to be firm, that we are able to be tough in order to defend our values and our interests.”

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen added that the decision “expresses a united message”.

“Council should be able to now finalise a ban on almost 90% of all Russian oil imports by the end of the year,” she added. “This is an important step forward.”

Von der Leyen said the council would “soon return to the issue of the remaining 10%” while reiterating that other elements in the package are also important.

European Council to grant Ukraine €9bn

The European Council has said it is ready to grant Ukraine €9bn to aid in its post-war reconstruction.

The Council will “continue helping Ukraine with its immediate liquidity needs, together with G7” European Council President Charles Michel said late on Monday night.

EUCO is ready to grant Ukraine EUR 9 billion. Strong and concrete support to Ukraine’s reconstruction,” he added.

#EUCO will continue helping #Ukraine with its immediate liquidity needs, together with @G7

EUCO is ready to grant #Ukraine EUR 9 billion.

Strong and concrete support to #Ukraine’s reconstruction.

— Charles Michel (@CharlesMichel) May 30, 2022

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen tweeted: “I am glad that tonight leaders agreed in principle on the sixth sanctions package. This is an important step forward.

We also agreed to work on a mechanism to provide Ukraine with a new, exceptional macro-financial assistance package of up to €9 billion.”

I am glad that tonight leaders agreed in principle on the sixth sanctions package. This is an important step forward.

We also agreed to work on a mechanism to provide Ukraine with a new, exceptional macro-financial assistance package of up to €9 billion. https://t.co/La3bZl6JNp

— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) May 30, 2022

As the Kremlin turns its military focus on Donbas, residents are evacuating whenever and however they can. Today, some displaced Ukrainians in Donetsk oblast evacuated by train.

A man displaced from Donbas on an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine, on May 30, 2022.
A man displaced from Donbas on an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine on 30 May Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
A woman boards an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine, on May 30, 2022.
A woman boards an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine on 30 May. Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
A man evacuated from Avdivka inside an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine, on May 30, 2022.
A man evacuated from Avdivka inside an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine on 30 May Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
A woman displaced from Donbas walks to an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine, on May 30, 2022.
A woman displaced from Donbas walks to an evacuation train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine on 30 May Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
Family wait to be evacuated by train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine, on May 30, 2022.
A family wait to be evacuated by train in Pokrovsk, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine on 30 May Photograph: Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Belarus will conduct military mobilisation exercises in June and July in the Gomel region, state news agency BelTA is reporting.

The Gomel region of Belarus borders Ukraine in the south and, in places, the exclusion zone around the site of the Chornobyl nuclear reactor disaster. To the east, it borders Russia.

On 22 June-1July, planned exercises with military commissariats – military administrative agencies – and armed forces will be conducted, BelTA reported, citing Andrey Krivonosov, military commissar of the Gomel region.

Events of this kind are traditionally held to increase the combat and mobilisation readiness of military commissariats, and improve military knowledge and practical skills of those liable for military service.”

On 28 June-16 July, military training will take place with those liable for military service for territorial defence formations, Krivonosov said.

Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, has offered his condolences to the family of French journalist Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, who was killed after an armoured evacuation vehicle in which he was travelling was hit by shrapnel from a Russian shell in the city of Sievierodonetsk in eastern Ukraine.

The 32-year-old worked for the French TV channel BFM TV.

In his most recent national address, Zelenskiy said:

Today in the Luhansk region, the occupiers disrupted the evacuation from the areas of hostilities by firing at a car following the locals. French journalist Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff was killed by the shelling. He worked for the French TV channel BFM TV.

A little over a month ago, I gave an interview to this particular TV channel. This was my first interview with the French media during a full-scale war.

My sincere condolences to Frédéric’s colleagues and family.

He became the 32nd media representative killed after February 24.”

EU leaders agree to ban more than two-thirds of oil imports from Russia

After hours of last-minute negotiations – and failure to come to agreement – European Union leaders have agreed to ban more than two-thirds of of all Russian oil imports.

The ban, which President Zelenskiy spent Monday advocating EU leaders for as a show of unity against Vladimir Putin, was heavily resisted by Hungary. Earlier compromises included exempting Russian oil transported through the Soviet-era Druzhba pipeline for Hungary, the Czech Republic and Slovakia from the EU embargo.

While the ban will put the “maximum pressure on Russia to end the war”, as Charles Michel, president of the European Council, said on Twitter, it will also probably result in a hike in the already high gas prices across Europe, which is heavily reliant on Russian oil.

#Unity

Agreement to ban export of Russian oil to the EU. 

This immediately covers more than 2/3 of oil imports from Russia, cutting a huge source of financing for its war machine. 

Maximum pressure on Russia to end the war. 

#EUCO

— Charles Michel (@eucopresident) May 30, 2022

This sanctions package includes other hard-hitting measures:

de-Swifting the largest Russian bank Sberbank,

banning 3 more Russian state-owned broadcasters,

and sanctioning individuals responsible for war crimes in #Ukraine#EUCO

— Charles Michel (@eucopresident) May 30, 2022

We agreed in Versailles to phase out our dependency on Russian gas, oil & coal as soon as possible.

But this requires a plan: This is #REPowerEU.

It has 4 pillars:

• Saving energy
• Diversifying away from 🇷🇺 fossil fuels
• Massive investment in renewable energy
• Financing pic.twitter.com/mCKJkByFKu

— Ursula von der Leyen (@vonderleyen) May 30, 2022

EU reaches partial agreement on embargo on Russian oil at summit

European Union leaders have reached a partial agreement on an embargo of Russian oil at the summit, the Associated Press is reporting.

More details to come.

The Ukrainian prosecutor general is accusing Russian forces of committing a war crime today in the Sumy Oblast: firing shells filled with flechettes.

Forensic doctors had previously discovered flechettes – small metal darts rarely used in modern warfare – embedded in people’s heads and chests in the city of Bucha.

On May 30, at 7:30, RF soldiers fired on the town of the Sumy Region🇺🇦, shells that were filled with flechettes. This is not the 1st time that RF has used such elements of indiscriminate action in shelling settlements. This is a war crime for which they will have to answer. pic.twitter.com/cO4WlJ6v6O

— Iryna Venediktova (@VenediktovaIV) May 30, 2022

The first alleged case of rape by a Russian soldier was sent to court, the prosecutor general of Ukraine said.

The first case of rape during the war was sent to court. Mikhail Romanov, a serviceman of the 239th Regiment of the 90th Guards Tank Vitebsk-Novgorod Division of the Russian Armed Forces, will be tried for the alleged murder of husband and gang sexual violence against his wife. pic.twitter.com/u9qCEBPfn6

— Iryna Venediktova (@VenediktovaIV) May 30, 2022

Frédéric Leclerc-Imhoff, the French journalist who was killed when the armoured evacuation vehicle he was travelling in was hit by shrapnel from a Russian shell in the city of Sievierodonetsk, was “cheerful, enthusiastic, caring, courageous and a wonderful journalist”, his colleagues said.

Leclerc-Imhoff was 32 and on his second mission to Ukraine since the Russian invasion began on 24 February, according to news channel BFMTV, for which he worked for six years.

“He cared a lot and I am proud of the choices he made,” his mother said.

As Russian forces turn their focus on Donbas, Bakhmut, a city of 72,000 in Donetsk oblast, is getting heavily shelled.

Talking with a few exhausted soldiers in Bakhmut, just back from the frontlines. “We don’t have any new weapons here, new forces, nothing,” says one of them. Another, who fought in 2014: “I’m expected to fight a tank with my Kalashnikov. We’re just cannon fodder. We’re fucked.”

— Neil Hauer (@NeilPHauer) May 30, 2022

The Russian command has engaged all its forces and is attempting to encircle Ukrainian troops in Donetsk and Luhansk regions – 🇺🇦 Defense Ministry.

The most difficult situation is now observed in the Severodonetsk, Bakhmut and Kurakhov directions.

— Iuliia Mendel (@IuliiaMendel) May 30, 2022

Here are some images from Bakhmut today:

A local resident points towards a residential building heavily damaged in a Russian bombing in Bakhmut, eastern Ukraine, Monday, May 30, 2022.
A local resident points towards a residential building heavily damaged in a Russian bombing in Bakhmut, eastern Ukraine, Monday 30 May. Photograph: Francisco Seco/AP
A family cooks outdoors due to lack of electricity and gas next to a residential building heavily damaged in a Russian bombing in Bakhmut, eastern Ukraine, Monday, May 30, 2022.
A family cooks outdoors due to lack of electricity and gas next to a residential building heavily damaged in a Russian bombing in Bakhmut, eastern Ukraine, Monday 30 May. Photograph: Francisco Seco/AP
A local resident walks among debris in a residential building heavily damaged in a Russian bombing in Bakhmut, eastern Ukraine, Monday, May 30, 2022.
A local resident walks among debris in a residential building heavily damaged in a Russian bombing in Bakhmut, eastern Ukraine, Monday 30 May. Photograph: Francisco Seco/AP

In addition to the phone call with Vladimir Putin today, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the president of Turkey, spoke with Volodymyr Zelenskiy on the phone, in which they discussed food security and sea ports.

Reuters is reporting that Erdoğan specifically told Zelenskiy that he placed value on a project to create a safe sea route for exporting Ukrainian agricultural goods. “Erdoğan stated that he especially valued the project to create a secure sea route for exporting Ukrainian agricultural products,” his office said in a statement and added he welcomed, in principle, the idea of making Istanbul a headquarters for an “observation mechanism” between Moscow, Kyiv and the United Nations.

Continued dialogue with 🇹🇷 President @RTErdogan. Discussed threats to food security posed by the aggressor & ways to unblock 🇺🇦 ports. Held discussions on cooperation in the security sphere. Unanimously agree on the need to restore peace. We appreciate 🇹🇷’s help in this process.

— Володимир Зеленський (@ZelenskyyUa) May 30, 2022

While Lysychansk and Sievierodonetsk in the Luhansk oblast sustained much of the Kremlin’s focus today, with Russian troops entering the outskirts of Sievierodonetsk, Kharkiv in the northeast also took quite a bit of hits.

Russian forces occupy about 31% of the Kharkiv region’s territory is occupied by Russian forces, but Ukrainian defenders have liberated about 5%, the head of the Kharkiv regional military administration said. “We are not yet able to fully inspect some of the liberated settlements, conduct full-fledged de-mining and begin rebuilding critical infrastructure, as shelling continues. Where we can do it remotely, we do it,” Oleg Synegubov said earlier.

Kharkiv shelled again: a teenager and two more people injured

— Iuliia Mendel (@IuliiaMendel) May 30, 2022

Ukrainian firefighters try to extinguish a fire in a house that was hit during a Russian attack with a cluster-type munition in Kharkiv, eastern Ukraine, Monday, May 30, 2022.
Ukrainian firefighters try to extinguish a fire in a house that was hit during a Russian attack with a cluster-type munition in Kharkiv, eastern Ukraine, Monday, May 30, 2022. Photograph: Bernat Armangué/AP
Neighbours gather around a house on fire that was hit during a Russian attack with a cluster-type munition in Kharkiv, eastern Ukraine, Monday, May 30, 2022.
Neighbours gather around a house on fire that was hit during a Russian attack with a cluster-type munition in Kharkiv, eastern Ukraine, Monday, May 30, 2022. Photograph: Bernat Armangué/AP
Ukrainian Territorial Defence Force members gather in a basement during a deployment break after returning from the frontline in eastern Ukraine’s Kharkiv area on Monday, May 30, 2022.
Ukrainian Territorial Defence Force members gather in a basement during a deployment break after returning from the frontline in eastern Ukraine’s Kharkiv area on Monday, May 30, 2022. Photograph: Bernat Armangué/AP

Vladimir Putin signed a decree simplifying the process of attaining Russian citizenship for Ukrainian children who are either orphaned or currently without parental care, particularly in the partially occupied territories in the Donbas:

Is not it a version of kidnapping?
vladimir putin signed a decree on the simplification of turning into russian citizenship for Ukrainian orphaned children without parental care, especially in the partially occupied territories.

— Iuliia Mendel (@IuliiaMendel) May 30, 2022

Putin ordered to simplify the process of attaining citizenship for kids without parental care who are from #Ukraine, or the so-called republics in occupied Donbas. Ukrainian authorities say Russia already deported around 2,000 orphans to the territories it controls pic.twitter.com/yfp1DFX8s2

— Anastasiia Lapatina (@lapatina_) May 30, 2022

Lysychansk is one of two cities that was hit hard today in the Luhansk oblast of Ukraine – the bombing of the other city, Sievierodonetsk, is so intense that the casualties cannot be assessed.

Here are some scenes from Lysychansk today:

An elderly woman walks away from a burning house garage after shelling in the city of Lysychansk.
A woman walks away from her burning garage after shelling in the city of Lysychansk. Photograph: Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images
Ukrainian servicemen in Lysychansk.
Ukrainian servicemen in Lysychansk. Photograph: Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images
A woman walks in front of a building destroyed by a strike.
A woman walks in front of a building destroyed by a strike. Photograph: Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images
The woman whose garage was shelled in Lysychansk.
The woman whose garage was shelled in Lysychansk. Photograph: Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images





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