Ukraine Latest: Kyiv Urges Germany to Supply Fighter Jets, Ships

  • In Business
  • 2023-02-07 08:46:53Z
  • By Bloomberg

(Bloomberg) -- The situation on the frontline is "very precarious" and Ukrainian forces need Germany to take the lead in forging a coalition to send fighter jets, warships and submarines, according to Andrij Melnyk, a deputy foreign minister in the government in Kyiv.

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Melnyk, a former ambassador to Germany, said Ukraine's most urgent need is for aircraft like the Eurofighter or Tornado and urged Chancellor Olaf Scholz to move more quickly than he did in making the decision last month to supply Leopard battle tanks. "We need the air force, we need the navy, and Germany would be in a position to help us with that," Melnyk said in an interview with German public broadcaster ZDF. "If we wait and only take the decision later then it might be too late."

A Chinese envoy to the United Nations earlier called for a swift end to the conflict and an immediate halt to shelling of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, as well as "maximum efforts to stop the conflict from escalating to a nuclear crisis," according to a report by state news agency Xinhua.

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On the Ground

Russia carried out six missile strikes and 24 air attacks over the past day, Ukraine's General Staff said on Facebook. Kremlin forces also unleashed 75 barrages from multiple-launch rocket systems, hitting civilian targets in the Kharkiv, Donetsk, Dnipropetrovsk and Kherson regions, according to the statement. Ukrainian troops repelled assaults near 10 settlements in Donetsk and Luhansk, the General Staff said.

(All times CET)

Melnyk Sees No Sign Russia Ready for Peace Talks (9 a.m.)

Melnyk also told ZDF that Ukraine has received absolutely no indications from the Kremlin that Russia is ready to engage in genuine peace talks.

"You need two for a dance and you also need two for peace talks," Melnyk said. "They are talking constantly about negotiations but at the same time they're bombing cities and apartment buildings," he added. "So we need the weapons to try to force Putin's hand."

He declined "for security reasons" to say whether President Volodymyr Zelenskiy will accept an invitation to attend this week's EU summit in Brussels but said his presence there is under discussion.

Russia 'Lacking Munitions, Troops' (9 a.m.)

Russia has been trying to restart major offensive operations in Ukraine since early last month with the aim of capturing the parts of the Donetsk region it does not already occupy, according to the latest UK Ministry of Defense intelligence update.

Russia's military has only managed to gain a few hundred meters of territory per week, almost certainly because it lacks munitions and troops, the ministry said, adding that Russia can still accumulate the forces it needs in the coming weeks to "substantially affect the outcome of the war."

US Warns China Over Aid to Russia (9:36 p.m.)

The US is watching closely to make sure that China's political and economic support for Russia doesn't cross the line into aid for Vladimir Putin's military in Ukraine, State Department spokesman Ned Price said.

The message to China "has been very simple: We're watching very closely," Price said. "There would be costs and consequences if we were to see a systematic effort to help Russia bypass the sanctions."

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