Thursday, December 01, 2022

Live Updates: Turkey detects second naval mine in the Black Sea

ANKARA, Turkey – Turkey’s defense ministry says troops are working to neutralize a second naval mine that was found floating off Turkey’s Black Sea coast.

On Monday, the ministry said underwater defense teams that had been dispatched to the site off the coast of Igneda, near the border with Bulgaria, managed to secure the mine and are now working to “neutralize” it.

On Saturday, authorities closed the Bosporus – the historic waterway between the Black Sea and the Sea of ​​Marmara – to traffic as a precaution as Turkey’s coast guard responded to reports of a drifting mine-like object, which later was “neutralised”.

The sighting of explosive devices comes as a warning that mines placed at the entrances to Ukrainian ports could be freed in heavy weather and cross the Black Sea.

On 18 March, Turkey issued a Navtex alert advising ships to “keep a sharp eye” and to report any potential mine drifts from ports such as Odessa.


Major Developments in the Russo-Ukraine War:

— Russia Focus shifts on attempts to crush Ukraine’s army in the east

– vote: The war has raised concerns of Americans that America could be a nuclear target.

– doomsday survivors Germany fleeing Ukraine for security

– Ukrainian welder Turn donated vehicles into army transport

— Ukraine war threatens food Supplies in the fragile Arab world

— There’s a Moment of Silence at the Oscarsand a plea for Ukraine

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— ‘My personal tragedy’: Ukrainians prepare for attack on Odessa

— . go to for more coverage


Other Developments:

GENEVA – The office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights says 1,119 civilians have been killed and 1,790 wounded since Russia’s attack on Ukraine on February 24.

The United Nations agency said on Sunday that most of the casualties were due to heavy artillery and multiple-launch rocket systems, and the use of explosive weapons with a wide range of effects, including missiles and air strikes. It said it believes the actual figures are “significantly higher”, given the delay in obtaining information and verifying the reports.

Among those killed were 224 men, 168 women, 15 girls and 32 boys. The gender of another 52 children and 628 adults has yet to be determined.

The report said allegations of multiple civilian casualties in the besieged southern city of Mariupol and Volnovakha, Izyum, Popasna, Rubizan and Trostianets are still being confirmed and are not included in the latest totals.

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LONDON: British defense officials say the Russian military has not made any significant progress in the past 24 hours, amid supply problems and aggressive resistance from Ukrainian fighters.

Britain’s Defense Ministry said in its latest intelligence briefing that poor morale and a lack of momentum added to the difficulties facing Russian forces.

In a briefing posted on Twitter, the ministry said heavy fighting continues around Mariupol as Russian forces try to capture the port on the Sea of ​​Azov, which connects to the Black Sea.

Earlier, the ministry said that Russia was building a blockade of Ukraine’s Black Sea coast, cutting off maritime trade with the country. The ministry said the Russian Navy is also launching “sporadic” missile strikes against targets in Ukraine.


BEIJING: China’s ambassador to the US says that out of all the parties related to Ukraine, only China has a say about Russia.

Qin Gang’s comments on the Phoenix television channel, which has close ties to China’s ruling Communist Party, come as Beijing’s tacit support for Moscow is receiving increasing scrutiny from Washington and others.

China has refused to criticize Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, or even refer to it as such. It has also strongly opposed punishing the economic sanctions imposed by the West on Moscow.

Qin said China was uniquely positioned to help resolve the “crisis” peacefully.

“Now, except China, all concerned parties are in serious confrontation with Russia. Only China has the ears of Russia,” Qin said on the channel’s “Talk with World Leaders” program in an interview broadcast on Sunday.

Qin blamed NATO’s eastern expansion for provoking Russia. “Russia feels betrayed by NATO on its eastward expansion. It feels threatened and surrounded,” Qin said.

While Beijing claims it is fair in the conflict, Chinese state media have repeated false and unsupported claims made by Moscow.

Phoenix has drawn attention of itself for embedding a reporter with Russian troops, which has generated a steady stream of pro-Moscow reports.


LVIV, Ukraine — Ukraine’s priorities at the Ukrainian-Russian talks in Turkey this week will be “sovereignty and territorial integrity,” President Volodymyr Zelensky told his nation in his nightly address on Sunday.

“We are looking for peace, in fact, without delay,” he said. “There is an opportunity and need for a face-to-face meeting in Turkey. It’s not bad. Let’s see the result.”

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This week, he said, “I will continue to appeal to the parliaments of other countries” to remind them of the dire situation in besieged cities like Mariupol.

Zelensky also told independent Russian journalists on Sunday that his government would consider declaring neutrality and providing security guarantees to Russia, reiterating earlier statements. He said this included keeping Ukraine nuclear-free.

He told reporters that the issue of neutrality – and agreed to stay out of NATO – should be put to Ukrainian voters in a referendum after the withdrawal of Russian troops. He said the vote could be held within a few months after the Russian troops left.

Russia immediately banned Zelensky’s interview from being published. Roskomnadzor, which controls communications for Moscow, issued the ban on Sunday, saying action could be taken against Russia-based media outlets, including “foreign media outlets acting as foreign agents”.

Zelensky replied that Moscow was afraid of relatively short conversations with journalists. According to Ukrainian news agency RBK Ukraine, “it would be strange if it wasn’t so tragic,” he said.


BERLIN – German Chancellor Olaf Scholz says neither NATO nor US President Joe Biden aims to bring regime change to Russia.

During a speech on Saturday, Biden said of Russian President Vladimir Putin that “this man cannot stay in power.” The White House and other US officials clarified that Biden was not actually calling for Putin to be toppled.

Asked during an appearance on ARD television on Sunday whether the removal of Putin was in fact a real objective, Scholz replied: “That is not the purpose of NATO, and neither is the purpose of the US president.”

Scholz said: “We both fully agree that regime change is the aim and not the purpose of the policy that we pursue together.”

Asked if Biden made a dangerous mistake with his remarks, Scholz replied: “No.” He said that “he said what he said” and Secretary of State Antony Blinken also clarified that he was not talking about regime change.

Scholz last month announced a major increase in German defense spending. On Sunday, he confirmed a report in Bild am Sonntag newspaper that the government is considering acquiring a missile defense shield on the lines of Israel’s “Iron Dome”.

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