Ukraine news LIVE – Putin's forces slaughtered more than '20,000 civilians' as Kremlin vows to expand nuclear arsenal | The Sun

MORE than "20,000 civilians" have been slaughtered by since Russia's invasion of Ukraine began, a top EU chief has said.

Announcing EU plans to launch a special tribunal to try the Kremlin for its Ukraine war crimes, Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, slammed the brutality of Putin's forces.

Sharing a speech on Twitter, she said: “Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has brought death, devastation and unspeakable suffering…It is estimated that more than 20,000 civilians and more than 100,000 Ukrainian military officers have been killed so far.”

This comes as the Kremlin reveals plans to expand its nuclear arsenal in the coming year.

According to Russian state media, defence minister Sergei Shoigu said: “When preparing the list of major construction facilities for 2023, special attention will be paid to construction in the interests of the strategic nuclear forces."

Read our Ukraine-Russia live blog below for the latest news…

  • Henry Moore

    German official brands Russia ‘war criminals’

    Germany’s Justice Minister has slammed the Kremlin, accusing Russia of “war crimes” in Ukraine.

    “War criminals should not and must not be allowed to feel safe anywhere,” Marco Buschmann said.

    He added that Russia should be tried at the International Criminal Court.

  • Henry Moore

    Ukraine’s masterful artworks go on display at Madrid museum

    Dozens of modern artworks removed from Kyiv to protect them from Russian strikes that have already done huge damage to Ukraine’s cultural heritage went on display at a Madrid museum on Tuesday.

    The works on show at the Thyssen-Bornemisza National Museum of Art as part of the “In the Eye of the Storm: Modernism in Ukraine 1900-1930” exhibition include oil paintings, sketches and collages.

    Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza founded “Museums for Ukraine” which is seeking to showcase Ukrainian art, using the museum which houses her late father’s collection for the exhibition.

    The Madrid exhibition is one of a number of showings of Ukraine’s cultural heritage across Europe, as well as an effort to raise awareness of the threat posed to the war-torn country’s artistic legacy as fighting grinds on.

    Curators say it is one of the most comprehensive surveys of Ukrainian modern art in the period between 1900 to 1930.

    President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video shown at a preview Monday that “this is a vision of what Russia is trying to destroy”.

  • Henry Moore

    UN nuclear watchdog to increase presence across Ukraine

    According to a report from the Kyiv Independent, the International Atomic Energy Agency is set to increase its presence across Ukraine’s four nuclear power plants.

    Rafael Grossi, the watchdog’s chief, said this will help secure Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.

    He added he is working “towards the urgent establishment of a nuclear safety and security protection zone around Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant.”

  • Henry Moore

    Lithuania calls for modern tanks to be provided to Ukraine

    A top Lithuanian official has said NATO should provide Ukraine with modern tanks before the end of the year.

    Lithuania’s foreign minister Gabrielius Landsbergis said: “I’ve talked to a number of military experts and the answer I’m hearing is that if we provided tanks by this winter, let’s say January, it could make a difference.”

    This comes as NATO foreign secretaries met in Bucharest yesterday.

  • Henry Moore

    The ‘door is open’ for Ukrainian NATO membership

    According to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, Ukraine will one day be a member of the military alliance.

    “NATO’s door is open,” Stoltenberg said.

    Russia has been vocal in its opposition to Ukrainian NATO membership.

  • Henry Moore

    Could Russia be planning to leave Europe’s largest nuclear power plant?

    Ukrainian officials have suggested the Kremlin could be planning to pull its forces from the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant.

    “In recent weeks we are effectively receiving information that signs have appeared that they are possibly preparing to leave the [plant],” Petro Kotin, head of energy operator Energoatom, said this week.

    “One gets the impression they’re packing their bags and stealing everything they can.”

    However, Russian officials have rejected these claims.

    “The media are actively spreading fakes that Russia is allegedly planning to withdraw from Enerhodar and leave the [nuclear plant]. This information is not true,” the region’s Russian-backed administration said.

  • Henry Moore

    More on Olena Zelenska’s Commons speech

    While speaking in the House of Commons yesterday afternoon, Ukraine’s first lady said Britain could be a “world leader…for justice” if it provides further for Ukraine.

    “I am asking you a small favour to become the world leader in the effort for justice.” Ms Zelenska says. 

    “We need it so that the world can survive. We can see terror online. We can see it live. I believe that London can give the decisive impetus to make the world better.”

  • Henry Moore

    Russia slams US ‘hostility’ as Kremlin cancels nuclear-peace talks

    Following the Kremlin’s decision to indefinitely postpone nuclear-peace talks with the United States planned to take place in Egypt this week, Russian officials have slammed the US’ “hostility.”

    “In all areas, we note the highest level of toxicity and hostility from Washington,” said Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova via Telegram.

    “As part of the all-out hybrid war unleashed against us, almost every US step towards Russia is subject to a pathological desire to harm our country wherever possible.”

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