DIRECT. Russia is ‘ready’ to help ‘unfettered’ grain export from Ukraine, says Vladimir Putin

 DIRECT.  Russia is 'ready' to help 'unfettered' grain export from Ukraine, says Vladimir Putin

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5:25 p.m. : To avoid a global food crisis, we ask President Vladimir Putin to lift the blockade of Odessa in order to allow the export of Ukrainian cereals through the Black Sea.

5:25 p.m. : We have renewed our demand for a ceasefire from the Russian President and the release of some 2,500 Azovstal defenders taken as prisoners of war.

5:25 p.m. : Together with Chancellor Olaf Scholz, we spoke today with President Vladimir Putin. Any solution to the war must be negotiated between Moscow and Kyiv, with respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

5:24 p.m. : Emmanuel Macron returned in a few tweets to his meeting with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

4:52 p.m. : As it intensifies its offensive in eastern Ukraine, the Russian army has delivered a new show of force in the Arctic with a successful hypersonic missile launch. The Zircon missile was fired from the frigate Admiral Gorchkov, in the Barents Sea, to a target in the waters of the White Sea, in the Arctic, according to the Russian Ministry of Defense. A first official firing of this missile dates back to October 2020.

3:47 p.m. : Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, rival of his successor Volodymyr Zelensky, claims to have been prevented from leaving Ukraine. He wanted to go to Lithuania for the NATO parliamentary assembly. “The authorities have broken the ‘political ceasefire'”he laments.

3:43 p.m. : According to the Elysée Palace, Vladimir Putin has promised to allow commercial ships to access the port of Odessa to relaunch the export of cereals without “use militarily” clearing the waters around it. Odessa, under Russian blockade, is still controlled by Ukraine.

3:39 p.m. : Olaf Scholz and Emmanuel Macron asked Vladimir Putin to hire “serious direct negotiations with the Ukrainian president” to find “a diplomatic solution [au] conflict”, according to the summary of their exchanges communicated by the German Chancellery. The Elysée, for its part, affirms that the two leaders demanded the release of 2,500 Ukrainian fighters who were in the Azovstal factory in Mariupol.

3:30 p.m. : According to the Kremlin, Vladimir Putin assured Emmanuel Macron and Olaf Scholz that his country was “ready” to help an export “without hindrance” grain from Ukraine in exchange for the lifting of economic sanctions against his country. Russia, which now controls much of Ukraine’s ports, is accused of deliberately targeting the grain industry to encourage global shortages.

3:00 p.m. : Vladimir Putin spoke by telephone with Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, announces the Kremlin. According to the Russian account, he “emphasized the dangerousness of continuing to flood Ukraine with Western weapons”. The Russian president believes that aid to Ukraine increases the risk of “destabilize” and of “humanitarian crisis”.

2:08 p.m. : Australia confirmed this morning the death of one of its nationals in Ukraine. Michael Charles O’Neill, 47, is presented as an aid worker, who helped the wounded on the front line.

2:09 p.m. : Fighting continues in Sievierodonetsk, one of the main targets of the Russian army’s offensive in eastern Ukraine. “The bombardments continue (…) the army simply destroys the city”, says on Telegram the governor of the Luhansk region, Serhiy Haidaï. He denies the encirclement of the city claimed by the pro-Russian separatists yesterday.

12:18 p.m. : It’s time for a new point on the news of this May 28:

The Russian army claims the capture of the city of Lyman, an important lock in the defense of the Donetsk region. “The situation in the Donbass is very, very difficult”recognized Volodymyr Zelensky last night.

After the Uvalde shooting, the police admitted that not having intervened earlier in the school was a “bad decision”. The NRA convention, the gun lobby, opened last night in Texas. Donald Trump has called for “arm the citizens” to fight “the evil”.

• The four Frenchmen still in contention are playing their third round matches today. Here is the program of the day and the live to follow the match of Léolia Jeanjean, in great difficulty in the second set.

12:18 p.m. : After more than two months of investigation, the team of our True or Fake service has managed to identify the Russian soldier who made a video showing executed Ukrainian soldiers. Their investigative work, summarized in images, illustrates the violence of the abuses committed in Ukraine, but also the difficulty of establishing responsibility for possible war crimes.

11:47 : The Russian army in turn announces the capture of Lyman, announced yesterday by the pro-Russian separatists of the self-proclaimed republic of Donetsk. This commune is a railway junction and a major obstacle on the road to Sloviansk and Kramatorsk, two more important cities that Ukraine still controls. Its capture could also help the Russian army in its attempt to surround the Ukrainians in Sievierodonetsk and Lyssychansk.

09:51 : “The situation in the Donbass is very, very difficult”acknowledges Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in a video posted on Telegram last night. “We protect our land and do everything to strengthen” defense of this region. He also responded to the announcement of the Russian separatists, who say they have taken the town of Lyman: “If the occupiers think that Lyman and Severodonetsk will be theirs, they are wrong. Donbass will be Ukrainian”.

12:04 : Let’s recall the main information of this Saturday morning:

After the Uvalde shooting, the police recognized that not intervening earlier in the school was a “bad decision”. The NRA convention, the gun lobby, opened last night in Texas. Donald Trump has called for “arm the citizens” to fight “the evil”.

“The situation in the Donbass is very, very difficult”, Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video last night, as the Russian offensive intensified. Here’s what to remember from yesterday.

France has started vaccinating contact cases of monkeypox patients, the Directorate General of Health announced yesterday. Two people received a smallpox vaccine.

Winner of Toulon, Lyon offered the first European title in its history by winning the Challenge Cup (30-12).