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Boris Johnson fears Ukraine will be forced into a ‘bad’ peace deal


x – Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

Boris Johnson has said he fears Ukraine could be pressured into agreeing a “bad” peace deal with Russia that was not in its interests due to the economic consequences of the war.

“Too many countries are saying this is a European war that is unnecessary,” the Prime Minister told broadcasters in the Rwandan capital Kigali, where he is attending a Commonwealth summit.

“It is an economic problem that we don’t need and so the pressure will grow to encourage, coerce maybe the Ukrainians to a bad peace.”

Asked who this was coming from, he said: “I think just generally, I just think there is a general sentiment.

“I think the risk is that people will fail to see that it is vital to stand up against aggression,” he added. “If Putin gets away with aggression in Ukraine, if he gets away with the naked conquest of other people’s territory, then the read across for every single country here is absolutely dramatic.”

Follow the latest updates below.

10:57 AM

Ukraine says Russia aiming to drag Belarus into war

Ukraine’s intelligence service said on Saturday that Russia was aiming to drag Belarus into the war, after missiles were fired from Belarusian territory into a northern border region.

“Today’s strike is directly linked to the Kremlin’s efforts to pull Belarus as a co-belligerent into the war in Ukraine,” the Ukrainian intelligence service, which is part of the defense ministry, said on Telegram.

10:28 AM

Russia removes Polish flag from Soviet massacre memorial

Russian authorities have removed a Polish flag from a memorial commemorating the thousands of Poles killed by the Soviet Union, amid heightened tensions between Moscow and Warsaw over the Ukraine conflict.

Historians and visitors to the Katyn memorial in western Russia’s Smolensk region noted the flag’s disappearance on social media on Friday.

The mayor of Smolensk city confirmed the removal on Friday evening, publishing a photo showing the Russian flag flying alone at the memorial’s entrance.

“There cannot be Polish flags on Russian monuments. Even less so after the frankly anti-Russian comments by Polish political leaders,” Andrei Borisov said on social media platform VKontakte.

“The culture ministry of the Russian Federation made the right decision by removing the Polish flag. Katyn is a Russian memorial.”

10:26 AM

The latest pictures from Ukraine

A woman sits on a bench in front of a destroyed building as the residents of Andriivka village try to maintain their lives under difficult conditions - Metin Aktas / Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

A woman sits on a bench in front of a destroyed building as the residents of Andriivka village try to maintain their lives under difficult conditions – Metin Aktas / Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

A view from the National Technical University's & quot; Kharkiv Polytechnic Institute & quot;  after being hit by a Russian missile in Kharkiv, Ukraine - Sofia Bobok / Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

A view from the National Technical University’s “Kharkiv Polytechnic Institute” after being hit by a Russian missile in Kharkiv, Ukraine – Sofia Bobok / Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

s - SERGEY BOBOK / AFP via Getty Images

s – SERGEY BOBOK / AFP via Getty Images

09:55 AM

Chernihiv comes under ‘massive bombardment

Ukraine’s northern border region of Chernihiv came under “massive bombardment” fired from the territory of Russia’s ally Belarus, the Ukrainian army said in a statement on Saturday.

“Around 5:00 pm in the morning (0200 GMT) the Chernihivregion suffered a massive bombardment by missiles. Twenty rockets, fired from the territory of Belarus and from the air, targeted the village of Desna,” Ukraine’s northern military command wrote on Facebook, adding that there were no reports of victims so far.

09:22 AM

Russian shelling hits chemical plant where civilians trapped, says Ukraine

Russia launched artillery and air strikes on the twin cities of Severodonetsk and Lysychansk on Saturday, hitting a chemical plant where hundreds of civilians were trapped, a Ukrainian official said.

Serhiy Gaidai, governor of the Luhansk region, said Russian forces attacked Sievierodentsk’s industrial zone and also attempted to enter and blockade Lysychansk.

“There was an air strike at Lysychansk. Severodonetsk was hit by artillery,” Mr Gaidai said on the Telegram messaging app, adding the Azot chemical plant in Severodonetsk and the villages of Synetsky and Pavlograd and others were shelled.

He made no mention of casualties at the Azot chemical plant and Reuters could not immediately verify the information.

09:14 AM

Russian missiles rain down on military sites across Ukraine, say local officials

Dozens of Russian missiles rained down on military facilities in western and northern Ukraine on Saturday, local officials said, as Europe’s biggest land conflict since World War Two entered its fifth month.

The governor of the Lviv region in western Ukraine, Maxim Kozytskyi, said in a video posted online that six missiles were fired from the Black Sea at the Yavoriv base, with four hitting the base and two being intercepted and destroyed before hitting their target.

Vitaliy Bunechko, governor of the Zhytomyr region in the north of the country, said strikes on a military target killed at least one soldier.

“Nearly 30 missiles were launched at one military infrastructure facility very close to the city of Zhytomyr,” Bunechko said, adding that nearly 10 missiles had been intercepted and destroyed.

In the Chernihiv region, also in the north, Governor Vyacheslav Chaus said the small town of Desna had come under “massed” rocket strikes on Saturday morning. Chaus did not specify what had been a hit, but said there had been “infrastructure damage.” There were no casualties, he added.



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