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Ben Stiller meets ‘my hero’ Zelenskyy; captured US military veterans may face death penalty: Live Ukraine updates

Ben Stiller meets ‘my hero’ Zelenskyy; captured US military veterans may face death penalty: Live Ukraine updates


Two American veterans who had been captured earlier this month by Russian-backed separatist forces in a battle close to Kharkiv could face the dying penalty, Russian spokesman Dmitry Peskov warned. 

Peskov told NBC News the fates of Andy Tai Ngoc Huynh, 27, and Alexander Drueke, 39, might be determined by a Russian court docket. They had been “concerned in unlawful actions …(and) ought to be punished,” he mentioned, including that they weren’t more likely to be protected by Geneva Conventions afforded prisoners of warfare as a result of they weren’t a part of Ukraine’s common military. 

The State Division issued an announcement calling on “the Russian authorities – in addition to its proxies – to reside as much as their worldwide obligations of their therapy of any particular person, together with these captured preventing in Ukraine.”

Huynh and Drueke are believed to be the primary People captured by Russian forces because the warfare started on Feb. 24. The veterans traveled to Ukraine in April to assist Ukrainians repel Russian forces.

MORE: Family of two US military veterans speak out about missing men

Final week, two Britons and a Moroccan had been sentenced to death by Russian-backed separatists in jap Ukraine. Prosecutors claimed they had been mercenaries and never entitled to protections afforded prisoners of warfare. When requested if the People would face the identical destiny, Petrov mentioned he “can not assure something. It is determined by the investigation.”

Newest developments

►Polish and Ukraine authorities officers say they plan to show in Warsaw burnt-out Russian tanks captured by Ukrainian forces. Polish Prime Mministe Michal Dworczyk’s workplace mentioned the thought is to focus on Russian “atrocities” and the Ukrainian response.

►Destruction of companies, housing and infrastructure has surpassed $100 billion, the equal to 50% of Ukraine’s gross home product in 2021, the Nationwide Financial institution of Ukraine estimated.

►The Luxembourg authorities had offered 15% of its protection funds to help the Ukrainian army, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy mentioned after assembly with Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel in Kyiv on Tuesday.

►The Nobel Peace Prize auctioned off by Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov to boost cash for Ukrainian little one refugees offered Monday evening for $103.5 million, greater than 20 occasions the best quantity beforehand paid for a Nobel. Muratov additionally donated to charity the $500,000 that got here with the prize.

USA TODAY ON TELEGRAM: Join our Russia-Ukraine war channel to receive updates straight to your phone.

Actor and director Ben Stiller, a goodwill ambassador for the United Nations refugee program, met with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Monday after visiting ruined residential areas of Irpin and speaking to individuals who survived the occupation.

“It is actually fantastic, you’re my hero, you are wonderful,” Stiller mentioned in greeting Zelenskyy. “What you’ve got carried out and the way in which you’ve rallied the nation and … the world, it is actually inspiring.”

Stiller expressed dismay on the devastation the warfare has wrought in Irpin – a metropolis not removed from the capital of Kyiv that was hammered, then deserted, by the Russians. The destruction seems to be a lot worse up shut than it does on TV or social media, he mentioned.

“What you noticed in Irpin is certainly dreadful,” Zelenskyy responded. “However it’s even worse to only think about what is occurring within the settlements which can be nonetheless underneath momentary occupation within the east.”


Ben Stiller meets Ukrainian President Zelenskyy, calls him his ‘hero’

Actor Ben Stiller visited Ukraine as a United Nations goodwill ambassador marking World Refugee Day.

Cody Godwin, Related Press

The Russian army pounded away at pockets of resistance throughout areas of jap Ukraine on Tuesday, persevering with  to squeeze the beleaguered metropolis of Sievierodonetsk. The town is one of many final areas within the Luhansk Oblast that Russia’s would possibly has did not utterly overwhelm. 

Many of the metropolis has been taken, however about 568 Ukrainian civilians, together with 38 kids, stay holed up with Ukraine fighters on the Azot chemical plant, mentioned regional governor Serhii Haidai. The civilians are primarily staff of the corporate, and their households and have refused to evacuate, Haidai mentioned.

“In the present day the whole lot that may burn is on fireplace,” Haidai mentioned.

Lawyer Common Merrick Garland made an unannounced go to to Ukraine on Tuesday for a gathering with Prosecutor Common Iryna Venediktova to debate the persevering with effort to identify and apprehend suspected war criminals, in response to a Justice Division official, who couldn’t focus on particulars of the journey publicly and spoke on situation of anonymity.

Earlier this yr, the lawyer common pledged U.S. help for a global marketing campaign to carry warfare criminals accountable for atrocities being documented by Ukrainian authorities.

“Each day, we see the heartbreaking photographs and skim the horrific accounts of brutality … however there isn’t a hiding place for warfare criminals.” Garland mentioned throughout a digital assembly final month together with his Ukrainian counterpart and different allies.

Kevin Johnson, USA TODAY

The official Pleasure parade in Kyiv was canceled this yr after a decade of hard-fought efforts for more acceptance of LGBTQ people

Earlier than Russia invaded, Ukraine — a largely non secular nation with an extended historical past of oppression towards sexual and gender expression — had more and more grow to be a uncommon shiny spot for LGBTQ rights and a sanctuary of kinds for Jap Europe. Ex-Soviet LGBTQ people would journey to expertise a homosexual nightclub scene, particularly in bigger cities like Kyiv, Kharkiv and Odesa, the place they may really feel safer to be open.

Now, what would have been the tenth anniversary of the Equality March in Kyiv this month was relocated to Poland due to the continued warfare.

“We had lots and I hope we are going to rebuild it,” mentioned Yuriy Dvizhon, artistic director of UKRAINEPRIDE. Read more here.

– Tami Abdollah, USA TODAY 

Africa has been “taken hostage” by Russia, which is responsible for dramatic shortages of wheat and fast-rising meals and gasoline costs throughout the African continent, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy advised the African Union continental physique throughout a closed-door tackle.

Many African nations have shut buying and selling ties to Russia and have proven little curiosity in sanctions. Zelenskyy and the West are attempting to vary that – European Union’s high diplomat, Josep Borrell, mentioned Russia’s blockade of Ukrainian exports quantities to a “warfare crime.”

A Russian army helicopter entered Estonian airspace with out permission Saturday, flying above the Koidula area alongside the Russia border for about two minutes, Estonia’s protection ministry mentioned in an announcement Tuesday.

A flight plan was not filed, the transponder was switched off and two-way radio communication was not established with Estonian air visitors management, the ministry mentioned.

Russia’s ambassador to Estonia Vladimir Lipajev was summoned by Estonia’s overseas affairs ministry. “Estonia considers this an especially critical and regrettable incident that undoubtedly causes extra tensions and is totally unacceptable,” the overseas affairs ministry mentioned Tuesday.

Estonia is a nation of lower than 3 million people who broke from the Soviet Union in 1991.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s adviser, Oleksiy Arestovych, mentioned through social media Monday that Ukraine is underneath risk of a brand new Russian assault of enormous proportions, posting: “All six carriers of Russian cruise missiles lined up within the Black Sea and are more than likely making ready for a large launch of missiles.”

In a nightly tackle Sunday, Zelenskyy warned of a probable offensive coming from Russia this week, when the European Union will debate whether or not to make Ukraine an official candidate to ultimately be part of the bloc. 

“Clearly, we must always count on higher hostile exercise from Russia. Purposefully, demonstratively. This week precisely,” Zelenskyy mentioned. “And never solely towards Ukraine, but additionally towards different European international locations. We’re making ready. We’re prepared. We warn companions.”

In the event that they do launch an assault, the Russians might be retaliating for Ukrainian missile strikes Monday on three drilling rigs within the Black Sea that offer pure fuel to Crimea, the Ukrainian peninsula the Kremlin illegally annexed in 2014. The state-owned TASS information company reported the strikes induced accidents. The Ukraine army has not offered affirmation.

Contributing: The Related Press

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