Latest news about Russia and the war in Ukraine

Japan announces new sanctions against Russia

Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade jointly announced Friday that Tokyo will impose sanctions on 15 Russian individuals and nine organizations.

The move will bring the number of Russian individuals sanctioned by Japan to 76, and the number of organizations to 12.

The additional 15 individuals include Russian Foreign Ministry Press Secretary Maria Zakharova, Deputy Defense Minister Alexei Krivoruchko, Rosoboronexport CEO Alexander Mikheev, and Suleiman Karimov, owner of the Nafta Financial and Industrial Group.

Additional organizations include Rosneft Aero, United Shipbuilding Corporation, and Kurganmashzavod.

– Chloe Taylor

The official says the attack on Lviv shows that Russia is “at war with the Ukrainian population”

Smoke rises after an explosion in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv on March 18, 2022.

Yuri Dyachin | AFP | Getty Images

A Ukrainian official said that Ukrainian forces shot down some Russian missiles fired from the Black Sea towards Lviv early Friday morning.

But some missiles bypassed Ukraine’s defenses and hit an aircraft repair factory on the outskirts of the city.

“Today there was a strike for the city of Lviv,” said Maxim Kozytsky, the governor of Ukraine’s Lviv region, in a statement. Facebook share Translated by NBC News. “The air alert worked and the armed forces acted. Some of the missiles fired from the Black Sea were shot down. Four of them hit, as you know, at the aircraft repair factory.”

Lviv, located in western Ukraine, has not yet been the scene of active hostilities, as many refugees are flocking to the city to escape conflict in other parts of the country.

Kozetsky said one person was wounded in Friday’s raid, and no one was killed.

He noted that the Lviv region currently “has no operational military facilities … at all”, indicating that this means that Russia is deliberately targeting civilians.

“This is an attack on the city of Lviv, the humanitarian center, which now houses at least 200,000 displaced people who have already left the war,” Kositsky said. “The enemy’s attack on the city of Lviv is again a confirmation that they are not at war with the Ukrainian army, but are at war with the population: women, children, immigrants. They have nothing sacred.”

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A Russian government spokesman was not immediately available for comment when contacted by CNBC.

Chloe Taylor

British regulator bans broadcasts on Russia’s RT channel in the UK

The Russian English-language news site RT is “intended for a Western audience, so what is shown on RT is not what is being said in Russia,” said Jeremiah Fowler of Security Discovery.

Lionel Bonaventure | AFP | Getty Images

British broadcasting regulator Ofcom has revoked RT’s license to broadcast in the UK with immediate effect.

Ofcom said Friday morning that it does not consider the licensee of RT, ANO TV Novosti to be “fit and appropriate to hold a British broadcasting licence”. The decision came amid 29 ongoing investigations into RT News’ impartiality and current affairs coverage of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“We consider the scale and potentially serious nature of the issues raised during such a short period of significant concern – particularly given RT’s compliance track record, which has seen the channel fined £200,000 for past neutrality violations,” Ofcom said in a statement. .

These concerns prompted Ofcom to launch a separate investigation into whether ANO TV Novosti should retain its licence.

“This investigation took into account a number of factors, including RT’s relationship with the Russian Federation,” Ofcom said. “[The investigation] I realized that RT is financed by the Russian state, which recently invaded a neighboring sovereign state. ”

The organization also said it considered new laws in Russia that “effectively criminalize any independent press that deviates from the Russian state’s news narrative, particularly in relation to the invasion of Ukraine”.

Ofcom concluded, “We consider that due to these restrictions, it appears impossible for RT to comply with the due neutrality rules of our broadcast rules.”

RT is currently not broadcasting in the UK after EU sanctions disrupted its broadcasts to Britain.

RT deputy editor-in-chief Anna Belkina told CNBC in an emailed statement that Ofcom’s decision described the regulator as “nothing more than a tool of government.”

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“By ignoring RT’s completely clean record for four consecutive years and declaring purely political reasons directly related to the situation in Ukraine, Ofcom erroneously judged RT not to be ‘fit and appropriate’ and thereby deprived the British public of access to information,” Belkina said.

– Chloe Taylor

Watch: CNBC Takes an Inside Look at NATO Operations in Eastern Europe

CNBC’s Silvia Amaro reports from the Tapa military base in Estonia – about 70 miles from the Russian border – where troops from NATO countries have been deployed in the wake of Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

Ukraine opens 9 humanitarian corridors

A soldier of the pro-Russian forces walks past a row of cars with evacuees leaving the besieged southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine, March 17, 2022.

Alexander Armoshenko | Reuters

Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Irina Verychuk announced that nine humanitarian corridors will open in Ukraine on Friday to allow the evacuation of civilians and the import of vital supplies.

Friday’s plans include routes out of Mariupol, Sumy and the villages of Krasnopilia and Velika Pisarevka.

Vereshuk said the authorities are working to arrange humanitarian assistance for the Kherson region. Kherson, a major city in southern Ukraine, It became the first major Ukrainian city to be occupied by Russian forces advance this month.

Since then, the city’s residents have taken to the streets on several occasions to protest the Russian occupation.

– Chloe Taylor

One person was killed in an air strike in Kyiv, according to officials

Ukraine’s state emergency services said one person was killed this morning in an air strike on Kyiv.

The agency said that a fire broke out in a five-storey apartment building in the Boudil neighborhood of the capital, after the building was hit by a missile.

– Chloe Taylor

The missiles hit the western city of Lviv

The mayor of Lviv said, on Friday, that several missiles fell on an aircraft repair center on the outskirts of Lviv, western Ukraine.

The attack indicates that Russian forces continue to expand their offensive. Many Ukrainians fled their homes elsewhere in the country for the relatively safe city of Lviv. The city’s mayor, Andrei Sadovy, was forced to take action to prevent landlords from increasing rents as refugees poured into the city.

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In a series of Telegram posts on Friday morning, Sadovyi said that Russian missiles had hit the area near the Lviv airport.

“Several missiles hit the aircraft repair station. The strikes destroyed its buildings,” he said. “Active work at the station was previously halted, so there are now no casualties. Rescue workers and related facilities are working on the site.”

He also explained that the airport itself was not injured.

NBC reporters on the ground in Lviv said an air alarm went off in the city just after 6 a.m. local time, and three explosions were heard from the city’s outskirts at around 6:25 a.m.

– Chloe Taylor

Read CNBC’s previous live coverage here:

Chinese state media continues to blame the United States before the phone call between Xi and Biden

On Thursday, the official Chinese media announced that Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Joe Biden will speak on Friday evening, Beijing time. The reports did not specifically mention Ukraine.

In the lead-up to the call, Chinese state media had moved away from primarily pro-Russia coverage of the war in Ukraine. Even Qin Gang, China’s ambassador to the United States, said in advance in an opinion piece for the Washington Post on Wednesday that conflict is not good for China, and that Beijing would have tried to prevent it if it had known in advance.

But one of the consistent State media messages stuck to blame the United States To make tensions worse.

The People’s Daily, the official newspaper of the Chinese Communist Party, carried a headline about Xi-Biden’s upcoming call prominently on the front page of its website on Friday. Several lines below were the title of an editorial blaming the United States for adhering to double standards.

– Evelyn Cheng

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