US and Britain announce new sanctions against Russia while Ukraine asks residents in Luhansk to leave amid fears of fresh attacks in the Donbass area, part of a wider Russian offensive in Ukraine that continues on its 42nd day.

Local residents walk past a burned building during Ukraine-Russia conflict in the southern port city of Mariupol, on April 4, 2022.
Local residents walk past a burned building during Ukraine-Russia conflict in the southern port city of Mariupol, on April 4, 2022. (Reuters)

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

Mayor: Over 5,000 civilians dead in Mariupol

The mayor of the besieged Ukrainian city of Mariupol has claimed more than 5,000 civilians have been killed during the month-long Russian blockade, among them 210 children.

Mayor Vadym Boichenko said that Russian forces have among other targets bombed hospitals, including one where 50 people burned to death.

Boichenko said that more than 90 percent of the city’s infrastructure has been destroyed by Russian shelling. Moscow denies killing civilians or attacking civilian infrastructure.

Russia is blocking humanitarian access to Mariupol because it wants to hide evidence of "thousands" of people killed there, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said, adding:  "I think it's a tragedy there, it's hell, I know that it's not tens, but thousands of people, different people, who have been killed there and thousands wounded."

More Western sanctions on Russia as Kiev warns of eastern attack

The US and Britain have announced new sanctions against Russia after Ukraine said hundreds of civilians were found dead around its capital, as Kiev warned residents in the east of the country to get out "now" ahead of a feared assault.

The White House unveiled measures targeting Russia's top public and private banks and two daughters of President Vladimir Putin, while Britain sanctioned two banks — and vowed to eliminate all Russian oil and gas imports by year-end. 

Their actions followed an international outcry after Ukraine said its forces found hundreds of civilians dead around the capital Kiev, including the town of Bucha, after Russian troops withdrew. 

Biden denounces 'major war crimes' in Ukraine

US President Joe Biden denounced the widespread killing of Ukrainian civilians allegedly by Russian troops in Bucha as "war crimes." 

"I'm sure you've seen the pictures from Bucha, just outside of Kiev: bodies left in the streets as Russian troops withdrew, some shot in the back of the head with their hands tied behind their backs," Biden said at a labour union event. 

"There's nothing less happening than major war crimes," he said. 

Russia says paid dollar debt in roubles amid default fears

Russia said it had been forced to make foreign debt payments on dollar-denominated bonds in roubles, raising the prospect of a potential default amid unprecedented Western sanctions over the Ukraine conflict.

The announcement came on the 42nd day of Russia's military campaign in Ukraine, with thousands killed and more than 11 million having fled their homes or the country in the worst refugee crisis in Europe since World War II. 

New US commitment of missiles to Ukraine

A new US commitment of Javelin missiles means the West soon will have provided Ukrainian fighters with 10 anti-tank weapons for every Russian tank in their country, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said.

Blinken spoke to US news broadcaster MSNBC after the US announced an additional $100 million for more Javelin missiles for Ukraine. The US says it has provided $1.7 billion for Ukraine’s defence and aid since Russia started its military operation. 

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is pressing the West to provide more weapons, faster, and do more to cut off Russia from the global economy, to pressure Putin to make peace. 

US training small number of Ukrainians on Switchblade drones

A small number of Ukrainians have been trained in the United States on how to operate killer "Switchblade" drones, single-use weapons that fly into their targets and detonate on impact, a senior US defence official disclosed.

The Ukrainians undergoing training on the Switchblades and other weaponry number less than a dozen. They had arrived in the United States for regular military education programs prior to Russia's offensive in  Ukraine.

"We took advantage of the opportunity to pull them aside for a couple of days and provide them some training, particularly on the switchblades UAV," the senior US defence official told reporters, speaking on condition of anonymity. "UAV" refers to an unmanned aerial vehicle.

Ukrainian fuel storage base destroyed in the Kharkiv region

Russia's defence ministry said that a Ukrainian fuel storage base was destroyed by Russian missiles in the Kharkiv region, the RIA news agency quoted it as saying.

The Russian forces also destroyed some Ukrainian military equipment and foreign weapons at a railway station in the same region, RIA reported, citing the ministry. 

Ukraine FM to discuss need for weapons with NATO, G7 counterparts

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said he planned to appeal to his counterparts from G7 and NATO nations to fulfil Ukraine's request for sufficient weapons to counter Russian forces. 

Speaking in a video address, Kuleba said he was meeting the other foreign ministers on Thursday. "The main topic of my discussion in Brussels will be the supply of all necessary weapons to Ukraine," he said. 

Ukrainian Railways report casualties after rockets hit eastern rail station

State-owned Ukrainian Railways said there were a number of casualties after three rockets hit a rail station in eastern Ukraine, damaging buildings, tracks and rail stock.

"There are casualties," it said in a statement, without providing detail on the number of victims or the location of the attack. 

Russia mulls more media restrictions

Russian lawmakers introduced a bill into the lower parliament house that, if adopted, would tighten already harsh restrictions on media outlets in the country and their coverage of the conflict in Ukraine.

The bill outlines media law amendments that empower the Prosecutor General's office to shut down domestic and foreign media outlets for a number of reasons. These would include coverage of Russia's operation in Ukraine that deviates from the official line and has been criminalised as “fake news,” or which discredits the Russian military and its actions in Ukraine.

Another reason allowing the Prosecutor General's office to shut down a foreign news outlet operating in Russia would be retaliation for Russian outlets being closed abroad. 

'Evacuate now', Kiev tells residents of east Ukraine 

Ukraine has told residents of the country's eastern regions to evacuate "now" or "risk death" due to a feared Russian attack.

"The governors of the Kharkiv, Luhansk and Donetsk regions are calling on the population to leave these territories and are doing everything to ensure that the evacuations take place in an organised manner," deputy prime minister Iryna Vereshchuk wrote on Telegram.

The call for urgent evacuations comes as Ukraine says Russian forces are regrouping to launch a fresh offensive in the country's east after retreating from the Kiev region. 

NATO chief warns Ukraine conflict may last 'long time'

The conflict in Ukraine is in a "critical phase" with Russian troops gearing up for a "major offensive" in the east of the country, NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said.

Stoltenberg said allies needed to be "prepared for the long haul."

Hungary's Orban speaks to Putin, urges immediate truce

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban said he had urged Vladimir Putin to put in place an immediate ceasefire in Ukraine, and invited the leaders of France, Germany and Ukraine to meet the Russian leader in Budapest.

"I suggested to President Putin that he declare an immediate ceasefire," Orban told a press conference, saying the Russian president had initiated the call. "His response was positive, but with conditions," Orban said, without elaborating.

The Hungarian leader, re-elected on Sunday, added that he had invited Putin to Budapest along with French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for talks. 

Greece to expel 12 Russian diplomats: foreign ministry

Greece announced that it was expelling 12 Russian diplomats, becoming the latest EU country to order such expulsions amid increasing outrage over the conflict in Ukraine.

"Greek authorities have declared 12 members of diplomatic and consular missions of the Russian Federation accredited in Greece... as personae non gratae," the foreign ministry said.

It did not specifically mention the Ukraine conflict, but said the move came under 1961 and 1963 Vienna conventions governing diplomatic and consular affairs. 

Drugmaker GSK cuts ties with Russian government over Ukraine crisis

Britain's GlaxoSmithKline has cut ties with the Russian government after sanctions on Moscow for its attack on Ukraine, the drugmaker's website showed on Wednesday, as the company's consumer arm also stopped imports of supplements and vitamins.

"We support global sanctions and will comply with them," GSK said in its update. "We have taken a precautionary approach to stop, to the fullest extent possible, any direct involvement and support to the Russian government and military." 

Over 68,000 Ukrainians take refuge in Türkiye: UN refugee agency

As the Russia-Ukraine conflict continues, more than 68,000 Ukrainians have fled to Türkiye, an official of the UN refugee agency has said.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency after a recent event in the central Konya province, UNHCR Türkiye representative Philippe Leclerc said the agency is dealing with the "ever-rising number of refugees" all over the world.

Today, there are more than 30 million refugees, and 90 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) across the globe, Leclerc said.

Poland gives citizens crisis preparation tips

Poland’s government has issued a guide that instructs the public how to prepare for a crisis like war and what to do during attacks with weapons ranging from conventional to chemical and nuclear.

Posted on the Government Security Center’s website this week, the “Be Ready – Guide for Times of Crisis and War” gives detailed instructions in written form and videos. 

European Union and NATO member Poland supports neighbouring Ukraine’s fight against Russia’s attack and is calling for European imports of Russian energy sources to stop. The tough stance has raised concerns among some ordinary Poles. 

UK: Russian atrocities 'not far short of genocide,'

The British prime minister condemned alleged Russian atrocities in the Ukrainian city of Bucha, but stopped short of labelling the civilian killings outright genocide as described by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Moscow have been facing vehement criticism from the international community after Ukraine accused Russian forces of committing “genocide” and “war crimes” in Bucha, a town near the capital Kiev.

Russia has rejected the allegations as a “fake news attack,” arguing that images of bodies and footage of slain civilians that have drawn global outrage were staged after Russian forces withdrew from the city.

Moscow: Bucha accusations meant to derail peace talks, justify more sanctions

Russia's foreign ministry spokesperson said that images of dead bodies strewn across the Ukrainian town of Bucha, which Russia says were staged, were designed to justify more sanctions against Moscow and derail peace talks with Kiev.

Ukraine has accused the Russian military of massacring residents of Bucha, a town outside the capital Kiev that Russian troops had occupied for several weeks before withdrawing. Western countries have called for those responsible for the murder of civilians to be punished. 

Man dies after ramming car into Russian embassy in Romania

A man died after ramming his car into the gates of the Russian embassy in Romania and setting himself on fire inside the vehicle, police said.

"The car crashed into the gate and right after the person inside the vehicle lit a device and that's how the fire inside the car started," prosecutor Bogdan Staicu told reporters. 

"Inside the car, containers with inflammable substances were found," Staicu added.

Russian artillery 'kills two people' at aid distribution point

At least two civilians have been killed and five wounded when Russian artillery fire struck a humanitarian aid distribution point in the town of Vuhledar.

In an online post, the governor of Ukraine's Donetsk region, Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko, shared photos of the alleged attack.

They showed two women stretched out on the ground, another person with serious wound to the leg and another person with a bloodied leg being helped into a rescue vehicle.

"At the moment it's known that two people were killed and five were injured. We document all the crimes committed by the Russian Federation on our land," Kyrylenko wrote.

Kremlin: Peace talks not progressing fast enough

The Kremlin has said peace talks between Moscow and Kiev are not progressing as rapidly or energetically as it would like.

"The only thing I can say is that work (on the talks) is continuing," Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told reporters on a conference call when asked about the prospect of another round of negotiations between Moscow and Kiev.

"There is a still a long road ahead. The work process is ongoing but it is dragging along way more than we would like."

Governor: Russian forces control 60% of Rubizhne town

Russian forces have taken control of 60 percent of the town of Rubizhne in Ukraine's eastern Luhansk region, which has suffered heavy shelling across its territory for the past 24 hours.

"Sixty percent of Rubizhne is controlled by the Russians," Luhansk Governor Serhiy Gaidai said in an online post, accusing a former official of assisting the Russian forces by handing over information.

Gaidai said Russian forces had carried out 81 mortar, artillery and rocket strikes across the region over the past day.

Sustained bombardment seen in Severodonetsk

Shells and rockets have been landing at regular intervals in the industrial city of Severodonetsk in eastern Ukraine, according to AFP journalists. Severodonetsk is the easternmost city held by Ukrainian forces on the eastern frontline.

One building was on fire and the few civilians seen only ventured out in intervals between the bombing, quickly running back for cover when it resumed.

Russian forces have said they will focus their attacks in the south and east of the country, where they already hold large swathes of territory.

China calls for probe into Bucha killings, assigns no blame

China has said images of civilian deaths in the Ukrainian town of Bucha are “deeply disturbing” but that no blame should be apportioned until all facts are known.

China supports all initiatives and measures “conducive to alleviating the humanitarian crisis” and is “ready to continue to work together with the international community to prevent any harm to civilians,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian told reporters at a daily briefing.

“The truth and the cause of the incident must be verified," Zhao said. “All parties should exercise restraint and avoid unfounded accusations before a conclusion of the investigation is drawn."

EU chief backs asylum for Russian deserters

A senior European Union official has said the bloc’s member countries should think about ways of offering asylum to Russian soldiers willing to desert Ukraine battlefields.

European Council president Charles Michel expressed his “outrage at crimes against humanity, against innocent civilians in Bucha and in many other cities”. In a speech to the European Parliament, he called on Russian soldiers to disobey orders.

“If you want no part in killing your Ukrainian brothers and sisters, if you don’t want to be a criminal, drop your weapons, stop fighting, leave the battlefield,” Michel, who represents the bloc’s governments, said. 

ICRC: Convoy of more than 500 people reaches Zaporizhzhia

An International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) team has led a convoy of buses and private cars carrying over 500 people to Zaporizhzhia after the civilians fled the besieged Ukrainian town of Mariupol on their own.

"It's clear, though, that thousands more civilians trapped inside Mariupol need safe passage out and aid to come in," Pascal Hundt, the ICRC's head of delegation in Ukraine, said in a statement.

EU launches stockpiling of gear, drugs against chemical, nuclear incidents

The European Commission says it has begun a stockpiling operation to boost its defences against chemical, nuclear and biological incidents amid concerns over the conflict in Ukraine.

The EU will increase its reserves of protective equipment, decontamination gear, medicines and vaccines that could be useful in case of chemical, nuclear or biological incidents, the Commission said, confirming a Reuters report from last week.

Kremlin: There are no grounds for real debt default

Russia could in theory find itself in default but this would be an artificial situation, the Kremlin has said.

There are no grounds for a real default, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said, adding that Russia has all necessary funds to service its obligations but will continue to repay its external debt in roubles while its foreign exchange reserves remain blocked by Western sanctions.

Russia says it had to pay roubles to holders of Eurobonds

The Russian finance ministry has said it had to pay roubles to holders of its dollar-denominated Eurobonds maturing in 2022 and 2042 as a foreign bank refused to process Russia's order to pay $649.2 million to holders of its debt.

The finance ministry said the foreign bank, the name of which it has not disclosed, rejected Russia's order to pay coupons on the two papers and also did not process the payment of the face value of the Eurobond maturing in 2022.

Russia may consider allowing foreign holders of its 2022 and 2042 Eurobonds to convert rouble payments into foreign currencies once Russia's access to its forex accounts is restored, the finance ministry said.

India trying to stabilise economic transactions with Russia

India's foreign minister has said the government is working to stabilise economic transactions with Russia, a day after India condemned killings of civilians in Ukraine and called for an independent probe.

S Jaishankar told lawmakers in Parliament that Russia continues to be a critical economic partner and efforts were underway to "stabilise economic transactions between India and Russia".

Russia is India's main supplier of defence hardware but overall annual trade is small, averaging about $9 billion in the past few years, mainly fertiliser and some oil. 

Pope Francis holds a flag of Ukraine that comes from the city of Bucha, one of the areas around Ukraine's capital from which Russian troops have withdrawn and where dozens of bodies in civilian clothing have been found, during the weekly general audience in The Vatican. (The Vatican Media handout via AFP)
Pope Francis holds a flag of Ukraine that comes from the city of Bucha, one of the areas around Ukraine's capital from which Russian troops have withdrawn and where dozens of bodies in civilian clothing have been found, during the weekly general audience in The Vatican. (The Vatican Media handout via AFP) ()

Zelenskyy hits out at European 'indecisiveness'

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has condemned hesitancy in Europe over barring Russian energy imports, arguing some leaders were more concerned with business losses than with alleged atrocities by Moscow's troops.

New "rhetoric" about sanctions had emerged, he told the Irish parliament, "but I cannot tolerate any indecisiveness after everything we have gone through and everything that Russia has done to us".

Russia targets fuel depot near Dnipro city

Russian forces have struck a fuel depot near the central Ukrainian city of Dnipro, regional authorities have said, hitting an area that has avoided the brunt of fighting. 

No one was wounded in the attack and firefighters fought for eight hours to extinguish the flames.

"The night was alarming and difficult. The enemy attacked our region from the air and hit an oil depot and a factory. The oil depot with fuel was destroyed," the region's governor, Valentin Reznitchenko, said in a statement on social media.

The head of the regional council, My kola Lukashuk, said the Russian strikes occurred late on Tuesday in Novomoskovsk, about 25 kilometres from Dnipro, describing the attacks as "cynical" in a region with "no Ukrainian soldiers".

Russia wants to keep diplomatic ties with West

Russia wants to maintain diplomatic relations with Western countries despite a series of expulsions of its diplomats, the Interfax news agency has cited Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexander Grushko as saying.

Grushko said European countries disrupting the work of Russian diplomats were damaging their own interests.

Greece to ask 12 Russian diplomats to leave country

Greece will ask 12 Russian diplomats to leave the country in reaction to the conflict in Ukraine, declaring them "personae non-gratae", the foreign ministry has said.

The Greek foreign ministry's general secretary has informed the Russian ambassador of the decision. The Russian diplomats were not acting in accordance with international rules, a foreign ministry official said.

Pope slams 'horrendous cruelty' in Ukraine's Bucha

Pope Francis has condemned "the massacre of Bucha" and held up a Ukrainian flag that was sent to him from the town where tied bodies shot at close range, a mass grave and other signs of executions were found.

"Recent news from the war in Ukraine, instead of bringing relief and hope, brought new atrocities, such as the massacre of Bucha," he said at the end of his weekly audience.

"Cruelty that is increasingly horrendous, even against civilians, defenceless women and children. They are victims whose innocent blood cries out up to heaven and implores: 'Stop this war!'" he said.

EU: How Ukraine conflict ends matters

The European Union wants the conflict in Ukraine to end as soon as possible, but how that happens is important too, its chief diplomat has said, calling for the bloc to send more arms to Kiev.

"Because if we're going to have a destroyed country that has been dismembered territorially and neutralised, with millions of people in exile, and millions of people dead, then no, we don't want this war to end like this," Josep Borrell told European Parliament.

"That is why we have to continue arming Ukraine...More weapons, that is what the Ukrainians expect of us."

Ukraine makes new attempts to evacuate civilians

Ukraine will try to evacuate trapped civilians through 11 humanitarian corridors but people trying to leave the besieged city of Mariupol will have to use their own vehicles, Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk has said.

Efforts to get convoys of buses into the southern port city to evacuate tens of thousands of residents who are trapped there have repeatedly failed since Russian forces encircled Mariupol.

Dutch government preventing 14 Russian yachts from leaving

The Dutch government has said it is currently preventing 14 yachts — including 12 that were under construction — from leaving the country due to sanctions on Russia.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs made the statement in a letter to parliament, updating lawmakers on the enforcement of sanctions after criticism that the Netherlands had lagged behind other European countries in enforcement and seizures.

Hungary summons Ukrainian envoy over 'insults'

Hungary's foreign ministry has summoned Ukraine's ambassador over what it calls offensive comments from Kiev regarding Budapest's stance on Russia's attacks.

Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto, in comments released three days after Prime Minister Viktor Orban was re-elected, said Hungary had condemned Russia's assault, acknowledged Ukraine's sovereignty and taken in hundreds of thousands of refugees.

So it was "time for Ukrainian leaders to stop their insults directed at Hungary and acknowledge the will of the Hungarian people," Szijjarto said in a statement, referring to Sunday's landslide election win.

EU: Ban on Russian oil, gas imports will be needed

The European Union will have to introduce measures against imports of Russian oil and even gas at some point as a way to pressure Moscow to stop its Ukraine attacks, the chairman of EU leaders Charles Michel has said.

"I think that measures on oil and even gas will also be needed sooner or later," Michel told the European Parliament.

EU leaders have said the bloc will soon have to sanction all of Russia's hydrocarbon exports as they blamed Moscow for "war crimes" discovered in Ukraine, especially in the town of Bucha.

Ukraine's gas transit operator suffers big damages

Ukraine’s gas transit operator has suffered damages totalling hundreds of millions of dollars since Russian forces attacked Ukraine on February 24, its head has said.

Sergiy Makogon said on Facebook the company continued to distribute gas to Ukrainian consumers although three main gas pipelines had been damaged and two gas distribution stations destroyed.

In addition, 48 gas distribution stations had stopped operations and four compressor stations had been seized by Russian forces.

Ukraine's Luhansk region tells civilians to evacuate 

Ukrainian authorities in the eastern region of Luhansk have hoped to evacuate civilians through five "humanitarian corridors" and urged residents to get out "while it is safe."

Ukraine has said Russian troops that attacked on February 24 are regrouping and preparing for a new offensive in the Donbass area, which includes Luhansk.

"We will take everyone out if the Russians allow us to get to the meeting places (for evacuation). Because, as you can see, they don't always observe ceasefires," the Luhansk region governor, Serhiy Gaidai, wrote on the Telegram messaging app.

"I appeal to every resident of the Luhansk region - evacuate while it is safe ... While there are buses and trains - take this opportunity."

UK: World must act to stop 'mass murder' in Ukraine

The world must act to stop the mass murder in Ukraine, British Health Secretary Sajid Javid has said, comparing reports of civilian killings by Russian troops to a 1995 genocide in Bosnia.

Since Russian troops withdrew from towns and villages around the Ukrainian capital Kiev, Ukrainian troops have been showing journalists corpses of what they say are civilians killed by Russian forces, destroyed houses and burnt-out cars. 

"This is mass murder on an unprecedented scale in Europe. We haven't seen the likes of this I think since 1995," he told BBC television.

British exhibitions group Hyve to sell its business assets in Russia

British exhibitions group Hyve Group has said it proposed to sell its Russian business to Rise Expo for a maximum price of $93.96 million, as it looks to exit the country following its attacks on Ukraine.

UK to donate fleet of ambulances to Ukraine

The British government has announced that it will supply a fleet of ambulances to Ukraine.

Around 20 ambulances will be sent to the conflict-stricken east European nation, where healthcare services have been stretched to the breaking point since Russia launched its attacks.

“The UK government has stood shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine and provided them with the lifesaving medical equipment they need,” said Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid.

Russian border guards come under fire

A Russian regional official has said that border guards in the Kursk region bordering Ukraine had come under fire.

"Yesterday, on April 5, they tried to fire mortars at the position of our border guards in the Sudzhansky district," said Roman Starovoit, the governor of the Kursk region. "Russian border guards returned fire... There were no casualties or damage on our side."

Russia last week accused Ukrainian forces of carrying out an air strike against a fuel depot in the Russian city of Belgorod near the border with Ukraine, but a senior Ukrainian official denied responsibility.

Russia's Gazprom continues gas exports to Europe via Ukraine

Russian state-owned energy giant Gazprom has continued to supply natural gas to Europe via Ukraine in line with requests from European consumers.

Requests stood at 108.4 million cubic metres for April 6, similar to volumes requested on the previous day, the Interfax news agency reported, citing the operator of Ukraine's gas pipelines.

UK: Heavy fighting continues in Ukraine's Mariupol

Heavy fighting and Russian air strikes have continued in the encircled Ukrainian city of Mariupol.

"The humanitarian situation in the city is worsening," British military intelligence said.

"Most of the 160,000 remaining residents have no light, communication, medicine, heat or water. Russian forces have prevented humanitarian access, likely to pressure defenders to surrender."

US announces $100M in additional military aid to Ukraine

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has announced another $100 million in American military aid would be sent to Ukraine following reports of atrocities allegedly committed there by Russian forces.

"I have authorised, pursuant to a delegation from the President earlier today, the immediate drawdown of security assistance valued at up to $100 million to meet Ukraine's urgent need for additional anti-armour systems," Blinken said in a statement.

Zelenskyy: Ukraine army holding Russians back in east

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said Russian forces still are trying to push deep into Ukraine in the east, but the Ukrainian army is holding them back. 

In his daily night-time video address to the nation, Zelenskyy said Ukraine was aware that Russia was gathering up reinforcements for another offensive.  Zelenskyy also said Ukraine is outnumbered both in troops and equipment. 

Zelenskyy also said he and Western leaders have discussed a new round of sanctions against Russia. "After what the world saw in Bucha, the sanctions against Russia must be commensurate with the gravity of the war crimes committed by the occupiers."

Russia's Alfa Bank to face new US sanctions – report 

The United States will announce new sanctions on Russia's Alfa Bank as soon as Wednesday, US media report, as President Joe Biden's administration plans to further punish Russia for its attack on Ukraine.

For live updates from Tuesday (April 5), click here

Source: TRTWorld and agencies