Russia-Ukraine war latest: G7 commits to phasing out Russian oil, says Putin’s actions ‘bring shame on Russia’– as it happened – The Guardian

Residents of Russian-occupied areas of Zaporizhzhya oblast have had their personal documents taken away, the general staff of Ukraine’s armed forces has said its latest update, saying they would be returned by Russia “on the basis of the participation of the latter in the solemn events … of Victory Day.”

It also said “the enemy” had “carried out active preparations for the solemn parades” in Crimea, which was seized by Russia in 2014.

Ukrainian intelligence has previously said that Russia is also planning to hold part of its key Victory Day parade in Mariupol, where around 2,000 members of Ukraine’s Azov battalion remain trapped inside Mariupol’s Azovstal steel plant, the last remaining Ukrainian fighters in the city.

“Mariupol, according to [Russia’s] plans, should become the centre of ‘celebrations’,” Ukraine’s defence intelligence agency said in a statement last week. “For this purpose, the city is urgently cleaning the central streets from rubble, bodies of dead and unexploded Russian ammunition.”

Russian navy sailors cadets attend a rehearsal for the Victory Day military parade in Sevastopol, Crimea.
Russian navy sailors cadets attend a rehearsal for the Victory Day military parade in Sevastopol, Crimea. Photograph: AP

Putin set to lead Victory Day celebrations in Moscow

Russian president Vladimir Putin is set to preside over the country’s Victory Day celebrations on Monday, when the country marks its victory over Nazi Germany in the second world war.

The main event will be a parade in Moscow’s Red Square of troops, tanks, rockets and intercontinental ballistic missiles. Putin is also expected to make a speech at midday that could offer clues to the future of the war.

In an analysis for the Observer, Guardian correspondent Andrew Roth writes that that Putin may use the holiday to repackage the war in Ukraine:

Dramatic options include escalation through a formal declaration of war or general mobilisation – or de-escalating by proclaiming victory.

Alternatively, Putin could offer up a “sandwich”, as one analyst put it, that praises the Russian army’s “victory” while preparing the population for a grinding and painful conflict as status quo.

Ukrainian officials in particular have warned that Putin is planning to announce a mass mobilisation, or even to declare war against Ukraine, calling up personnel and resources that were untapped under Russia’s so-called “special operation” that began on 24 February.

Read on here:

Welcome summary

Hello, this is Helen Livingstone bringing you the Guardian’s live coverage of the conflict in Ukraine. Here’s a roundup of the latest developments:

  • Vladimir Putin is set to lead Victory Day celebrations marking the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany in the second world war on Monday. Analysts say the Russian president is likely to use the event to repackage details of the war in Ukraine to Russians. More dramatic options options have also been suggested, including escalation through a formal declaration of war or general mobilisation – or de-escalating by proclaiming victory.
  • Putin’s regime is “mirroring” the actions of the Nazis, the UK’s defence secretary, Ben Wallace, will say on Monday, according to an advance copy of the speech. Wallace will say president Putin and his inner circle should share the same fate as the Nazis, who ended up defeated and facing the Nuremberg trials for their atrocities.
  • Emmanuel Macron, the French president, is set to travel to Berlin for talks with German chancellor Olaf Scholz on Monday and to make a major address. It will be his first trip abroad since his re-election and Ukraine is expected to be high on the agenda for the two leaders.
  • Ukraine will prevail over Russia as freedom prevailed over the Nazi dictatorship in 1945, Scholz said in a TV address to mark the 77th anniversary of Victory in Europe Day. Scholz, whose relations with Zelenskiy have been frosty, has not yet said whether he will accept an invitation to travel to Kyiv on Monday.
  • Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy confirmed that 60 people who were sheltering in a school in Bilohorivka were killed when Russian forces bombed it this weekend. The United Nations has condemned the attack, with secretary-general António Guterres saying he was “appalled” by it.
  • More than 170 civilians were successfully evacuated from the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol and have arrived in Zaporizhzhia. Officials said that more than 600 people have been evacuated from Azovstal and Mariupol in total.
  • Members of Ukraine’s Azov battalion trapped inside Mariupol’s Azovstal steel plant meanwhile said they fear they will be killed if captured by Russian forces, as they pleaded with Ukrainian authorities to help arrange their extraction. Speaking to the media from inside the besieged steelworks, Lieut Illya Samoilenko vowed to fight on, saying that surrender would be a “gift” to the enemy.
  • US president Joe Biden and other G7 leaders held a video call with Zelenskiy in a show of unity ahead of Russia’s Victory Day celebrations. The G7 said it was committed to phasing out or banning Russian oil and denounced Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. “His actions bring shame on Russia and the historic sacrifices of its people,” the group said in a statement, referring to Soviet Russia’s role in defeating Nazi Germany.
  • New US visa bans on more than 2,600 Russian and Belarusian military officials include personnel believed to have operated in Bucha, the town outside Kyiv that has become synonymous with war crimes, US secretary of state Antony Blinken said.
  • The UK government has expanded its sanctions against Russia to include punitive import tariffs on Russian precious metals, as well as export bans on certain UK products, to increase economic pressure on Moscow over the invasion of Ukraine.
  • America’s top diplomat to Ukraine, Kristina Kvien, arrived with her team in Kyiv today in a step towards resuming the country’s presence in the capital. The visit was timed to commemorate Victory in Europe Day on Sunday.
  • Russian airstrikes on Sunday wounded one woman and knocked out electricity to six settlements in the Odesa oblast, authorities said.

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Russia-Ukraine war latest: G7 commits to phasing out Russian oil, says Putin’s actions ‘bring shame on Russia’– as it happened – The Guardian

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