Watch President Zelensky’s speech live at the Security Council briefing on Ukraine
The global sanctions have shaken the Russian financial system which is now “on the verge of collapse”, according to the White House.
Press secretary Jen Psaki said how quickly Russia starts defaulting on its debts depends on how Vladimir Putin chooses to respond to sanctions imposed on the country.
Although no specific timeline on when that might happen was given, the White House said it was getting “more and more difficult for President Putin to fund this war every day.”
It comes after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called on the UN to hold Nuremberg-style trials, which he says should seek to punish Russia for war crimes its troops have committed.
Addressing members of the UN Security Council, Mr Zelensky said the actions of Russian forces were ‘no different from terrorists’ and claimed women had been raped by Russian troops in front of their children .
White House: the United States and its allies ban new investments in Russia
The United States and its allies will impose new sanctions on Wednesday, including sanctions against Russian banks and officials, and a ban on all new investment in Russia, the White House said. It comes after officials in Washington and kyiv accused Moscow of committing war crimes in the Ukrainian town of Bucha.
The sanctions will increase restrictions on financial institutions and state-owned companies in Russia and target Russian government officials and their families, White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters on Tuesday.
“Tomorrow, what we will announce…in coordination with the G7 and the EU, is an additional set of sanctions measures that will impose costs on Russia and send it further down the path to economic, financial and technological isolation,” Psaki said, noting that the G7 and the EU account for about 5% of the global economy.
The measures “will degrade key instruments of Russian state power, inflict acute and immediate economic harm on Russia, and hold accountable the Russian kleptocracy that funds and supports Putin’s war,” she said.
She declined to comment on reports that the sanctions would target Putin’s daughters.
Eerie images emerging from Bucha include a mass grave and bodies of people shot at close range, prompting calls for tougher action against Moscow and an international investigation.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Tuesday, without providing evidence, that the killings were not a random act by a rogue unit but part of a deliberate Russian campaign to commit atrocities.
Russia, which claims it launched a ‘special military operation’ in Ukraine on February 24 to demilitarize and ‘denazify’ its neighbor, denies targeting civilians and says the dead were a ‘monstrous fake’ staged by the West to discredit him.
A senior French official said earlier on Tuesday that the European Union would likely impose new sanctions on Wednesday. The Wall Street Journal reported Sberbank may be among the targeted banks.
Two European diplomats said the final sanctions package was still being finalized and would be announced in a coordinated fashion on Wednesday.
PSAKI said Washington would continue to pressure other countries like India to abide by the sanctions and play a “constructive” role in holding Russia accountable.
Due to the war and Western sanctions, experts predict a contraction of the Russian economy of up to 15%.
Aisha RimiApril 5, 2022 10:54 p.m.
Zelensky: Russian troops ‘cut civilians’ tongues’ and want to make Ukrainians ‘silent slaves’
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has accused Russian troops of “cutting off the tongues of civilians” in Ukraine among a list of gruesome atrocities.
Addressing the UN Security Council on Tuesday, Zelensky told members of the council about alleged attacks by Russian President Vladimir Putin’s troops “just for fun” in recently liberated Ukrainian towns.
Appearing via video link, Mr Zelensky described how civilians were shot in the back of the neck after being tortured, blasted with grenades in their homes and crushed to death by tanks while in cars.
Aisha RimiApril 5, 2022 10:15 p.m.
Russian troops tortured and killed a woman before ‘burning a swastika on her corpse’, says Ukrainian MP
A woman was “raped and killed” by Russian forces before they burned a swastika on her body, a Ukrainian lawmaker has claimed.
Lesia Vasylenko, a Holos party politician, shared a graphic image on Twitter of what she claimed was the “tortured body of a raped and killed woman”. The photo appeared to show a woman’s torso with a burnt and scratched swastika on it.
Aisha RimiApril 5, 2022 9:58 p.m.
Russia’s financial system ‘on the brink of collapse’, White House says
The White House says Russia’s financial system is “on the brink of collapse” following global sanctions in response to Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.
Press secretary Jen Psaki said how quickly Russia would start defaulting on its debts depended on the decisions the country makes in response to the results of the sanctions.
Follow the developing story:
Aisha RimiApril 5, 2022 9:40 p.m.
UK and EU on collision course as Brussels fails to set ‘clear timetable’ to boycott Russian gas
The UK and EU are on a collision course over lucrative gas exports funding Russia’s assault on Ukraine, after Brussels ignored a call for a ‘clear timetable’ to eliminate the supplies.
The clash will come to a head at this week’s G7 meeting, when Liz Truss will confront her fellow foreign ministers with a demand for much tougher sanctions that would send Moscow’s economy ‘back into the Soviet era’, writes Rob Merrick.
Speaking in Poland, the foreign secretary said she would urge Western allies to join the UK in banning Russian ships from ports, sanctioning more Russian banks and targeting the country’s gold.
Joe MiddletonApril 5, 2022 8:52 p.m.
ICYMI: Liz Truss admits Western money continues to flow into Putin’s ‘war machine’
Liz Truss Admits Western Money Keeps Flowing Into Putin’s ‘War Machine’
Joe MiddletonApril 5, 2022 8:30 p.m.
3,846 people evacuated from Ukrainian cities through humanitarian corridors
A total of 3,846 people were evacuated from Ukrainian cities through humanitarian corridors on Tuesday.
That’s slightly more than the 3,376 who escaped on Monday, Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said in an online post.
Joe MiddletonApril 5, 2022 8:17 p.m.
Ukraine has one of the highest HIV rates in Europe. Russia’s war could set virus fight back by 20 years
Under shelling and missiles, doctors are risking their lives to treat 250,000 HIV-positive Ukrainians, fearing the war will set back their efforts by decades, reports Bel Trew from Odessa and Zaporizhzhia.
Joe MiddletonApril 5, 2022 8:09 p.m.
According to the governor of Zaporizhzhia, up to 20 people died in Russian-occupied villages
The governor of Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia region said on Tuesday that some villages recaptured from Russian forces had seen up to 20 people die under occupation out of a population of around 120.
“You had a village of 120 people – 15, 17, 20 people died. If you compare it proportionally to Bucha, it’s the same loss, maybe even more,” Governor Oleksandr Starukh said on state television, referring to the killings of civilians in the city of Bucha, Kyiv region. .
He did not share what evidence they had of this or name specific villages. Russia denies targeting civilians.
Joe MiddletonApril 5, 2022 7:51 p.m.
Rescue of pets: the invasion of Russia takes a heavy toll on Ukrainian animals, as well as on the human population
Cats, dogs, hamsters and kangaroos are among the animals that have been rescued as the impact of the conflict is felt far beyond the human population, reports Sophie Barbarani.
Joe MiddletonApril 5, 2022 7:35 p.m.