Situation in Donbass similar to genocide: Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin calls what is happening in the Donbas as approaching "genocide".
What is taking place in Donbas amounts to genocide, Russian President Vladimir Putin asserted Thursday.
Kirill Vyshinsky, the executive director of the Rossiya Segodnya news agency, asked Putin to include notions like "genocide" and "calls for genocide" in Russian legislation during the president's meeting with human rights activists.
"I must say about Russophobia as the first step toward genocide. What is happening now in Donbas, we see and know very well. And this, of course, is very reminiscent of the genocide that you mentioned," Putin said. There is a need "to act very carefully so as not to devalue these concepts."
"But they must reflect the realities of the events taking place," the Russian President concluded.
Ukrainian President does not support freezing conflict in Donbass
According to Andriy Yermak, the head of the Ukrainian presidential office, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy does not accept the concept of halting the combat in Donbas.
Yermak told the 1+1 broadcaster: "President Zelenskyy and our team have a very bad attitude to any freezes and frozen conflicts," adding that "we will do everything so that we do not have a frozen conflict or a frozen situation."
Yermak said US President Joe Biden, during talks with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky, reminded him that Kyiv's NATO membership was dependent on the Ukrainian people.
Russian fighters escorted US, french military aircraft over the Black Sea: MoD
Today, Russian fighters escorted Thursday US and French warplanes over the Black Sea as they attempted to reach Russian Borders, the Russian Defense Ministry's National Defense Control Center (NDCC) said.
Russian radars detected Friday air targets approaching the Russian state border over the neutral waters of the Black Sea, the Russian military reported.
NDCC said: "To identify air targets and prevent them from crossing Russia's state border, three Su-27 fighters from the air defense forces of the Southern Military District were scrambled."
Ukraine could become re-rerun of the Cuban missile crisis
Russia said Thursday escalating tensions over Ukraine could lead to a re-run of the Cuban missile crisis, which took place in 1962 and brought the world to the brink of nuclear war.
Deputy Russian foreign minister Sergei Ryabkov made the comment when asked if the current situation could turn into something that resembles the Cold War standoff between the United States and the Soviet Union.