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More European leaders come to Ukraine, Russia closes consulates in 3 Baltic countries

According to Reuters news agency, Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen arrived in Kiev on the morning of April 21. The two leaders will discuss with President Zelensky on increasing support for Ukraine.

Prime Minister Sanchez said he would convey to President Zelensky “a clear commitment to peace” from Spain and the European Union (EU). He also confirmed that Spain would reopen its embassy in Kiev, which has been closed since the conflict broke out on February 24.

“The West needs to come together to support the Ukrainian people,” Prime Minister Frederiksen said. She said Denmark would provide an additional $90 million in military aid to Ukraine and additional sanctions. for Russia.

The Prime Ministers of Spain and Denmark are present in Kiev (Ukraine). Video: Twitter

Many Western leaders have come to Kiev to show support for Ukraine. On April 20, European Council President Charles Michel met with President Zelensky during a surprise visit to Kiev. Other leaders such as British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen have also personally visited the Ukrainian capital.

Russia closes consulates of 3 Baltic countries

The Russian Foreign Ministry today (April 21) issued a statement that the Estonian and Lithuanian consulates in the city of St. Petersburg, as well as the Latvian consulate in St. Petersburg and Pskov, will have to close. The consular-generals of these countries were all declared “unwelcome individuals” by Moscow, and the non-Russian staff at the above agencies were forced to leave.

“We ask all of the above to leave Russian territory within the same time frame that the three Baltic states requested Russian consular staff to leave their countries,” the statement read.

The Russian Foreign Ministry also said that it had summoned top diplomats from the three Baltic states to “strongly protest” that they had closed Russian consulates in five cities.

Last month, Russia expelled 10 diplomats from Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia after the three countries, along with several other EU member states, expelled Russian diplomats over their special military operation. in Ukraine.

Germany responds to criticism of slow delivery of weapons to Ukraine

German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said today (April 21) that Germany is checking its stockpile of old Marder armored infantry fighting vehicles, and will need more time to maintain ammunition and equipment. equipment to be eligible for handover to the Ukrainian army.

“There is nothing taboo for us to provide armored vehicles and other weapons that Ukraine needs,” Foreign Minister Baerbock said on his second day of visit to the Baltic states, referring to the directives. There has been growing criticism of Germany’s delay in providing the weapons Ukraine needs to fend off attacks from Russia.

The German foreign minister also said that Berlin’s priority is to ensure that Kiev quickly acquires old-fashioned Soviet-made weapons that the German military can use without further training. She also affirmed that Germany will soon replace the weapons supplied to Ukraine by its allies with more modern weapons of its own production.

Greece will release detained Russian oil tanker

The Greek coast guard said that the Russian-flagged oil tanker Pegas detained by Greece off the island of Evia this week will be released. “The coast guard has been ordered by the anti-money laundering agency to release the ship,” a Greek official said, without providing further details.

The 115,500-ton oil tanker Pegas, with 19 crew members of Russian nationality, was detained near the town of Karystos, located on the southern coast of the island of Evia (Greece), under EU sanctions against Russia. .

United Nations: more than 50,000 displaced people from Ukraine

A total of 5,085,360 Ukrainians have been displaced from the country since Russia launched a special military operation on February 24, according to statistics from the United Nations’ International Organization for Migration (IOM).

This number is an increase of 50,921 people compared to the data released on April 20. Among them, women and children make up 90% of the displaced Ukrainians. Most Ukrainian men between the ages of 18 and 60 who are eligible for military service are unable to leave the country.

The IOM also said that an additional 218,000 citizens of third countries in Ukraine, mostly students and migrant workers, have also moved to neighboring countries.

Meanwhile, about 7.1 million Ukraine has been displaced since the conflict between this country and Russia broke out until now.


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