Ukrainian foreign minister says Kyiv needs more weapons and launch rocket systems to push back against Russian forces.
- Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says Kyiv will not be able to counter Russia’s offensive without more heavy weapons.
- Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko says his government is sending troops to the area that borders Ukraine.
- Finland’s Prime Minister Sanna Marin visits Ukraine and meets with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
- Western nations are considering whether to allow Russian oligarchs to buy their way out of sanctions and use the money to rebuild Ukraine, the Associated Press reports.
‘We need heavy weapons’: Ukraine’s FM
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has called for heavy weapons, including launch rocket systems, for Ukraine to push back against Russian forces.
Asked during a question-and-answer session on Twitter what Ukraine supporters outside the country should ask of their lawmakers, Kuleba said: “Push for multiple launch rocket systems.”
“We need heavy weapons,” he added. “The only position where Russia is better than us, it’s the amount of heavy weapons they have. Without artillery, without multiple launch rocket systems, we won’t to be able to push them back.”
West considering offering buyout from sanctions to Russian oligarchs: Report
Allied Western nations are considering whether to allow Russian oligarchs to buy their way out of sanctions and use the money to rebuild Ukraine, the Associated Press has reported, citing unidentified officials familiar with the matter.
Canadian Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland proposed the idea at a G-7 finance ministers’ meeting in Germany last week, the news agency said.
The official said the Ukrainians were aware of the discussions, adding that it is in the West’s interests to have prominent oligarchs dissociate themselves from Russian President Vladimir Putin while at the same time providing funding for Ukraine.
Belarus sending troops to Ukraine border
Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has said he was forming a southern military command and sending battalion tactical groups to the area that borders Ukraine.
“A new front has opened and we can’t fail to pay attention to it,” Lukashenko, wearing military uniform, told a televised meeting of defence officials.
He said the new command had been proposed last year but needed to be set up immediately.
“Even before creating it, we are obliged today – quickly, on the run – to work out the defence of our southern borders,” Lukashenko said.
Finnish prime minister visits Ukraine
Finland’s Prime Minister Sanna Marin has become the latest European leader to visit Ukraine.
Marin met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in the capital Kyiv and visited the towns of Bucha and Irpin, where Russian soldiers are alleged to have killed civilians.
Zelenskyy thanked Marin for Finland’s weapons deliveries and its support for sanctions against Russia.
“For us, Finland’s military assistance is very valuable,” Zelenskyy wrote on Facebook after talks with the Finnish leader. “Weapons, sanctions policy and the unity of our partners in the issue of Ukraine’s accession to the EU – this is what can provide strength in the defence of our land.”
Hello and welcome to Al Jazeera’s continuing coverage of the war in Ukraine.
Read all the updates from Thursday, May 26 here.