The Latest on Day 10 of the Ukraine Crisis

From by Eugene Daniels on the latest in Ukraine, Washington, and Russia:


— “Russian forces continued to shell the Ukrainian city of Mariupol on Saturday, despite agreeing to a ceasefire just hours earlier — throwing an attempted mass evacuation of civilians into chaos,” reports the BBC.

“Due to the fact that the Russian side is not sticking to the ceasefire and continues to shoot Mariupol itself and the outskirts, the evacuation has been postponed,” a statement from Mariupol authorities read. Meanwhile, Russian officials “said civilians had not used the escape routes from Mariupol and Volnovakha and accused Ukrainian authorities of preventing people from leaving.”

On Friday, Ukrainian President VOLODYMYR ZELENSKYY blasted NATO’s decision not to impose a no-fly zone over Ukraine: “All the people who die from this day forward will also die because of you, because of your weakness, because of your lack of unity,” he said. “The alliance has given the green light to the bombing of Ukrainian cities and villages by refusing to create a no-fly zone.”

— A British team with Sky News was injured in an ambush in Kyiv on Monday — read one reporter’s terrifying account. With video

— NYT:A video received by The Times gives a glimpse inside the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in Ukraine as it was being attacked by Russian forces on Friday morning.”


— All U.S. senators were invited to take part in a virtual meeting with Zelenskyy scheduled for this morning at 9:30 a.m.

While Zelenskyy has met with senators before — including a bipartisan group that visited Ukraine in January — this is the first time he’ll be speaking with them since the invasion of his country. It’s not clear how many senators will join, but a senior Senate staffer told me Friday night that “we expect strong turnout.”

The meeting comes as Congress is deciding whether to send more aid to Ukraine, including a $10 billion emergency request from President JOE BIDEN.

— The White House is now considering banning oil imports from Russia, Bloomberg’s Ari Natter, Jennifer Jacobs, Saleha Mohsin and Nick Wadhams scooped Friday. “Among the implications of an oil ban the White House is assessing is if the move would actually hurt the Russian economy, or if the crude would simply go to other markets and drive up U.S. gasoline prices,” the four write.

On Capitol Hill, momentum for a bill banning Russian oil has been building for days. Senators on both sides of the aisle have made clear they are ready to pass a bill, and Speaker NANCY PELOSI announced her support for the move Thursday.

But the White House isn’t fully on board with the idea. Their reasoning: a concern that pulling any oil out of the market would likely raise gas prices — and if that were to occur, the White House, not Congress, is likely to take the blame.

— U.S. officials are debating how to aid a possible Zelenskyy government in exile,NBC’s Scott Wong reports. “[L]awmakers in Washington say it is critically important that Zelenskyy and his top officials stay alive — even if it means whisking them away to another European capital.” But Zelenskyy has been clear he isn’t leaving his country.


— President VLADIMIR PUTIN “clamped down harder Friday on news and free speech than at any time in [his] 22 years in power,” NYT’s Anton Troianovski reports. Effective today, the law criminalizes “false information” about Putin’s war with up to 15 years in prison. In a particularly Orwellian twist, that could even make it illegal to call the war a “war” — the Kremlin says it is a “special military operation.”

— That’s led Western media outlets in the country to move quickly to protect their journalists. Bloomberg News followed the BBC in suspending their reporting in Russia. CNN stopped airing in the country, and ABC and CBS suspended their broadcasts (at least temporarily). WaPo is dropping its bylines and datelines for reporting in Russia to protect its journalists’ safety.

— Russia’s moves to isolate its internet from the rest of the world (and the rest of the world’s moves to isolate Russia) “could fundamentally change the way that Russians get their information and connect — or fail to connect — with the rest of the world,” Emily Birnbaum and Rebecca Kern report. “It’s bringing Putin’s Russia many steps closer to a so-called splinternet in which the West and Russia operate in different online spheres.”

More reading: “Zelensky’s call for volunteers to defend Ukraine heeded by thousands from abroad,” FT … “How the West Unplugged Russia From the World’s Financial Systems,” WSJ … “LGBTQ refugees fleeing Ukraine face discrimination in countries with anti-gay laws,” NPR

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