March 9 (Reuters) – Russia said it will provide humanitarian corridors on Wednesday for people fleeing Kyiv and four other Ukrainian cities, as the number of refugees created by the biggest assault on a European country since World War Two surpassed 2 million. read more
Efforts to evacuate civilians from the besieged port city of Mariupol failed on Tuesday. Ukraine’s government accused Russia of shelling a humanitarian corridor it had promised in Mariupol. read more
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* Russian forces would “observe a regime of silence” from 10 a.m. Moscow time (0700 GMT) to ensure safe passage for civilians wishing to leave Kyiv, Chernihiv, Sumy, Kharkiv and Mariupol, the head of Russia’s National Defence Control Centre, Mikhail Mizintsev, was quoted as saying by the Tass news agency.
It was unclear if the proposed routes would pass through Russia or Belarus, conditions previously opposed by the Ukrainian government.
* Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov will travel to Turkey on Wednesday for talks with his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kuleba, Tass cited the Russian foreign ministry as saying.
* U.S. Vice President Kamala Harris will collaborate with Poland and Romania on next steps to respond to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and reassure them of Washington’s support during her meetings with leaders of both countries starting Thursday. read more
*A U.S. ban on imports of Russia’s oil sparked a further increase in the oil price. Prices have surged more than 30% since Russia invaded its neighbour on Feb. 24.
* Britain said it aimed to phase out imports of Russian oil by the end of 2022. The EU plans to cut dependency on Russian gas this year by two-thirds. read more
* Ukrainian troops repulsed efforts by Russian forces to enter the eastern city of Kharkiv, regional governor Oleh Synehubov said.
* Russian forces have repeatedly tried to seize the southern regional capital of Mykolayiv in attacks that have been repulsed by Ukrainian troops, a Ukrainian presidential adviser said
* The United Nations human rights office said it had verified 1,335 civilian casualties so far in Ukraine, including 474 killed and 861 injured, but the true toll was likely to be higher.
* Ukraine says its forces have killed more than 11,000 Russian troops. Russia has confirmed about 500 losses. Neither side has disclosed Ukrainian casualties. read more
* The United States rejected a surprise offer by NATO ally Poland on Tuesday to transfer its Russian-made MiG-29 fighter jets to a U.S. base in Germany as a way to replenish Ukraine’s air force in its defence against invading Russian forces.
The United States has sought to speed weapons deliveries to Ukraine. But the prospect of flying combat aircraft from NATO territory into the war zone “raises serious concerns for the entire NATO alliance,” the Pentagon said. read more
* The International Monetary Fund’s executive board is poised to approve $1.4 billion in emergency funding for Ukraine on Wednesday to help it respond to Russia’s invasion, IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said on Tuesday. read more
Ukraine and Russia: What you need to know right now