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Russo-Ukrainian war, day 744: Erdogan proposes Turkey as venue for Russian-Ukrainian peace talks

Zelenskyy emphasizes the need for a just peace that safeguards Ukraine’s interests and territorial integrity.
Russo-Ukrainian war, day 744: Erdogan proposes Turkey as venue for Russian-Ukrainian peace talks

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Frontline report: How Ukraine outfoxed Russia’s Black Sea defense to sink Sergey Kotov. Exploiting gaps in Russian air defenses and leveraging the stealth and speed of their marine drones, Ukraine’s military dealt a significant blow to the Russian Navy, sinking a patrol ship and destroying a helicopter on board.

Putin falsely claims Belgium exists largely “thanks to Russia”. Russian President Putin falsely claims Belgium owes its statehood to Russia, continuing his pattern of distorting history to emphasize Russia’s importance in world events.

Taurus leak reveals Germany’s dilemma as Europe awakens to new security reality. The German Taurus leaks shed light not only on the technical details of a possible Taurus strike on the Crimean bridge, but Europe’s shifting security landscape, as France and Germany compete for leadership amid evolving US priorities and the urgent need to support Ukraine’s defense.

Military

Russian attacks kill 2, injure 19 over past day. Russian attacks also damaged civilian infrastructure, a theatre, museum, enterprise, shop, cars, administrative buildings and a church.

Russian drone hits civilian car in Kharkiv Oblast, killing at least 2 people. A 58-year-old man and a 53-year-old woman reportedly were killed. There could have been another person in the car, according to witnesses.

Ukraine downs 33 of 37 Russian drones overnight. The Russian night attack hit Chuhuiv in Kharkiv Oblast, injuring 7 people, including a 3-year-old girl and a 16-year-old boy.

Ukraine open to NATO military presence, says National security chief Danilov. Earlier, French President Emmanuel Macron and Polish Foreign Minister Radosław Sikorski suggested that deploying Western troops to Ukraine is a possibility that should not be discounted.

Polish foreign minister: presence of NATO forces in Ukraine “is not unthinkable”. Last week, Emmanuel Macron stated that the possibility of sending Western troops to Ukraine “cannot be ruled out.”

As of 08 Mar 2024, the approximate losses of weapons and military equipment of the Russian Armed Forces from the beginning of the invasion to the present day:

      • Personnel: 422310 (+880)
      • Tanks: 6706 (+11)
      • APV: 12798 (+19)
      • Artillery systems: 10375 (+25)
      • MLRS: 1011 (+2)
      • Anti-aircraft systems: 704 (+3)
      • Aircraft: 347
      • Helicopters: 325
      • UAV: 7998 (+35)
      • Cruise missiles : 1919
      • Warships/boats: 26
      • Submarines: 1
      • Vehicles and fuel tanks: 13598 (+66)

Intelligence and technology

Lithuania transfers shipment of 155-ml ammunition to Ukraine. Lithuanian Defense Minister Arvydas Anušauskas said Lithuania listened to Ukraine’s wishes and delivered what is currently most needed.

Pavel: Required funds collected for 800,000 artillery shells for Ukraine. Artillery shells for Ukraine are set to be delivered in the coming weeks, Czech President Petr Pavel confirmed.

Czech security adviser says funding for 800,000 shells for Ukraine not yet fully secured. Czech national security adviser Tomáš Pojar clarifies that funding for President Petr Pavel’s initiative to supply Ukraine with 800,000 artillery rounds only covers the first batch, despite pledges from 18 countries.

Three French companies to set up production in Ukraine. According to French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu, French companies will partner with Ukrainian companies to manufacture spare parts and possibly ammunition. The first production reportedly has to be set until summer 2024.

UK commits $416 million to supply Ukraine with 10,000 drones. The UK boosts its military aid to Ukraine with an extra £125 million ($160 million), raising the total package to £325 million ($416 million) for over 10,000 “cutting-edge” drones.

International

8 Embassies, including US and UK, caution against terrorist threat in Moscow. These include the US, the UK, Latvia, Canada, South Korea, Sweden, Germany, and the Czech Republic.

US Embassy warns its citizens in Russia of possible ‘extremist attacks’ in Moscow. UK Foreign Office also advises against travel to Russia due to risks of political rallies, drone attacks, and explosions, particularly near Ukraine border, Moscow & St Petersburg.

Erdogan offers Türkiye as venue for Russian-Ukrainian peace summit. Zelenskyy emphasizes the need for a just peace that safeguards Ukraine’s interests and territorial integrity.

Lithuania to allocate over $ 5 mn to rebuild destroyed schools and kindergartens in Ukraine. Over 3,500 educational institutions suffered damage due to Russian aggression in Ukraine. Deputy Minister of Education Yevhen Kudriavets says $14 billion is needed to restore educational infrastructure across the country.

Ukraine to receive € 6 billion from EU’s € 50 billion aid package in March, April. On February 28, the EU Council approved a multi-year €50 billion Ukraine Facility aid package.

Moldova’s president signs defense agreement with France, warns of Russian threat. After signing a bilateral defense and cooperation agreement with France, Moldova’s President Maia Sandu cautions that Russia will pose a threat to the rest of Europe if it prevails in Ukraine.

UK Foreign Secretary: “Giving Ukraine weapons will help bring peace, not escalate war”. David Cameron, UK Foreign Secretary, visited Berlin, affirming that arming Ukraine would not escalate the war but aid in peace efforts, amid international pressure on Germany to supply Taurus missiles to Ukraine.

Ukraine support cannot have limits, Macron tells French party leaders. French president defends possibility of sending troops to Ukraine ahead of bilateral security agreement

ISW warns of escalating Russian hybrid operations in Moldova ahead of EU accession talks. The operations may target EU accession talks and the 2024 presidential election, according to a new report.

Humanitarian and social impact

10 Ukrainian children rescued from Russian occupation. The Ukrainian children were subjected to forced indoctrination, including singing the Russian anthem and writing letters to occupying soldiers.

UN expert: Russia systematically uses torture in occupied parts of Ukraine. Torture by Russian forces in occupied Ukrainian territories is systematic and organized, not random, according to the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Alice Jill Edwards.

The Times: Ukraine says Russia operates black market of prisoners of war. Russian forces are operating a black market of prisoners of war, Ukrainian authorities have told The Times.

Swiss lawmakers back using Russian assets for Ukraine reparations. Switzerland, known for its banking industry and neutrality, is considering using more than $8 billion in frozen Russian assets for Ukraine reparations.

The Guardian: Greenpeace warns ‘unprecedented escalation’ if Russia restarts Zaporizhzhia Plant. Shaun Burnie, a nuclear specialist with Greenpeace Germany, stated unequivocally that “no nuclear regulations exist anywhere in the world that permit a nuclear plant to operate on the frontline in an active war zone.”

New developments

India busts human trafficking ring sending Indians to fight against Ukraine. Authorities in India uncovered a trafficking network deceiving citizens with lucrative job offers, only to dispatch them to Russia’s war against Ukraine as mercenaries. Indian media reported two confirmed Indian fatalities among those recruited.

Read our earlier daily review here.

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