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Top War Updates: Russia now controls 80% of Luhansk region; UK PM says peace talks over Ukraine are doomed

21 Apr , 2022   By : monika singh

Top War Updates: Russia now controls 80% of Luhansk region; UK PM says peace talks over Ukraine are doomed

Key Developments in Russia-Ukraine War April 20: The Russian troops now control 80% of Luhansk region, the city’s governor has said. Luhansk is one of two regions that make up the Donbas in eastern Ukraine and one of the goals of Russia is to expand the territory in the Donbas under the control of Moscow-backed separatists. Before Russia began its invasion, Kyiv controlled 60% of the Luhansk region. Gov. Serhiy Haidai said the Russians, who renewed their offensive this week in eastern and southern Ukraine, have strengthened their attacks in the Luhansk region, reported AP.

Meanwhile, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that any peace talks over Ukraine are unlikely to succeed as dealing with Russian President Vladimir Putin was like “a crocodile when it’s got your leg in its jaws.” Johnson futher added that it was vital that the West continues arming Ukraine.

Ukraine and Russia have not held face-to-face peace talks since March 29. The situation keeps getting worse as Ukraine recently alleged that Russian troops carried out atrocities in Bucha near Kyiv. Moscow however, has denied any such claims.

Here are rest of the top developments on the Russia-Ukraine War that you must know:

Ukraine is trying to convince its Western allies to shift Russia’s shipments of natural gas from the Nord Stream 1 pipeline to Ukraine’s pipeline, increasing Kyiv’s leverage in its conflict with Russia, energy officials told Reuters. The move will force Russia to shift more of its Europe-bound gas through Ukraine. That would make Moscow pay more transit fees that could help Ukraine’s wartime defense and deter Russia from damaging Ukraine’s gas pipelines in the meantime, reported Reuters.

Ukraine’s Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and Ukraine’s Finance Minister Serhiy Marchenko walked out of a Group of 20 meeting on Wednesday as Russia’s representative began to speak. Many finance ministers and central bank governors also left the room. In fact, a few ministers who attended the meeting virtually, also turned their cameras off, as per what sources told AP.

The head of Russia’s republic of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, has revealed that Russian forces will have complete control of the Azovstal steel plant in Mariupol on Thursday. Ukraine has not confirmed the news from their side yet.

Ukrainian negotiators on Wednesday offered to hold special talks with Russia in Mariupol in an effort to evacuate troops and civilians from the city. Negotiator Mykhailo Podolyak tweeted on Wednesday that the talks could be one on one or Two on two.

US President Joe Biden has already approved more than USD 2.6 billion in military assistance for Ukraine. He is expected to announce additional security assistance to Ukraine in the coming days including more artillery and ammunition. Biden on Wednesday also lauded the US military officials for their exceptional help in arming Ukraine.

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