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German Police Raids Homes Reportedly Linked To Putin’s Shut Ally, Tycoon Usmanov

Russian President Vladimir Putin has introduced a partial army mobilization in Russia as his invasion of Ukraine nears seven months and Kyiv regains territory in its counteroffensive.

Putin additionally warned the West that “it isn’t a bluff” that Russia would use all of the means at its disposal to guard its territory.

Reside Briefing: Russia’s Invasion Of Ukraine

RFE/RL’s Reside Briefing offers you all the newest developments on Russia’s ongoing invasion, how Kyiv is preventing again, Western army help, international response, and the plight of civilians. For all of RFE/RL’s protection of the battle, click on right here.

Putin’s deal with, broadcast to the nation on September 21, comes a day after Russian-occupied areas in jap and southern Ukraine introduced plans to carry votes on being integrated into Russia, triggering outrage and condemnations not solely in Kyiv however from a lot of the worldwide group.

Analysts say the Kremlin-backed efforts to swallow up 4 areas might set the stage for Moscow to escalate the battle following Ukrainian successes on the battlefield.

The referendums, which have been anticipated to happen for the reason that first months of the battle, will begin on September 23 within the Luhansk, Kherson, Zaporizhzhya, and Donetsk areas.

In his deal with, Putin accused the West of participating in “nuclear blackmail” and claimed, with out offering proof, that “high-ranking representatives of the main NATO states” had allegedly made statements “about the opportunity of utilizing nuclear weapons of mass destruction towards Russia.”

“To those that enable themselves such statements relating to Russia, I need to remind you that our nation additionally has numerous technique of destruction, and for separate elements and extra fashionable than these of NATO nations. When the territorial integrity of our nation is threatened, to guard Russia and our individuals, we will definitely use all of the means at our disposal,” Putin mentioned, including, “It isn’t a bluff.”

Putin mentioned the partial mobilization was on account of begin instantly on September 21.

“We’re speaking about partial mobilization, that’s solely residents who’re at present within the reserve will probably be topic to conscription, and above all those that served within the armed forces have a sure army specialty and related expertise,” Putin mentioned.

Putin mentioned his intention was to “liberate” east Ukraine’s Donbas area, claiming with out offering any proof that most individuals within the area didn’t need to return to what he referred to as the “yoke” of Ukraine.

Russian Protection Minister Sergei Shoigu mentioned in a televised interview on September 21 that solely these with related fight and repair expertise can be mobilized and never conscripts or college students.

He mentioned 5,937 Russian troops have been killed in Ukraine thus far, a fraction of Western and Ukrainian estimates of Russian army losses.

WATCH: Ukrainian safety companies say “individuals had been tortured” by Russian troops at a neighborhood police station within the just lately liberated metropolis of Kupyansk.

Shoigu’s casualty replace on Russian losses is the third such public launch. The final replace got here in late March, when the Protection Ministry claimed 1,351 Russian troopers had been killed in Ukraine.

British Protection Secretary Ben Wallace described Putin’s mobilization announcement as “an admission that his invasion is failing.”

“He and his protection minister have despatched tens of hundreds of their very own residents to their deaths, ill-equipped and badly led,” Wallace mentioned in a assertion. “No quantity of threats and propaganda can cover the truth that Ukraine is profitable this battle, the worldwide group are united, and Russia is turning into a world pariah.”

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte mentioned Putin’s mobilization order was an indication of panic on the Kremlin that shouldn’t be taken as a direct risk of full-out battle with the West.

“The mobilization, calling for referenda within the Donetsk — it’s all an indication of panic. His rhetoric on nuclear weapons is one thing we now have heard many occasions earlier than, and it leaves us chilly,” Rutte informed Dutch broadcaster NOS.

Putin’s deal with was broadcast a day after plans had been introduced in 4 Ukrainian areas occupied by Russian forces to carry votes on being integrated into Russia, a transfer that was extensively condemned by the worldwide group.

U.S. national-security adviser Jake Sullivan mentioned Washington rejected any such referendums “unequivocally,” whereas German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron each used the phrase “sham” to explain the deliberate motion.

“This has no authorized standing,” Macron mentioned on September 20 earlier than addressing the UN Common Meeting in New York. “The very thought of organizing referendums in territories which have skilled battle…is the signal of cynicism.”

“It is rather, very clear that these sham referendums can’t be accepted and usually are not coated by worldwide legislation,” Scholz informed reporters as he attended the UN Common Meeting.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau additionally denounced Russia’s deliberate referendums, saying Canada would by no means acknowledge them.

“This can be a blatant violation of worldwide legislation. It’s a additional escalation of battle. And it’s unacceptable,” he mentioned on Twitter.

The European Union strongly condemned the deliberate referendums and threatened extra sanctions.

“Russia, its political management, and all these concerned in these ‘referenda’ and different violations of worldwide legislation in Ukraine will probably be held accountable, and extra restrictive measures towards Russia can be thought-about,” EU overseas coverage chief Josep Borrell mentioned in an announcement.

He mentioned the votes can’t be thought-about “because the free expression of the desire of the individuals” in these areas.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy hailed the Western condemnation of the referendums.

“I thank all the chums and companions of Ukraine for his or her huge and agency condemnation of Russia’s intentions to prepare but extra pseudo-referendums,” he mentioned in his nightly video deal with.

“The state of affairs on the entrance line clearly signifies that the initiative belongs to Ukraine,” he mentioned. “Our positions don’t change due to the noise or any bulletins someplace. And we benefit from the full help of our companions on this.”

Ukrainian Overseas Minister Dmytro Kuleba mentioned earlier that the referendums will “not change something,” including on Twitter that “Russia has been and stays an aggressor illegally occupying elements of Ukrainian land. Ukraine has “each proper to liberate its territories and can maintain liberating them no matter Russia has to say.”

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, who’s at present the deputy chief of Russia’s Safety Council, wrote on Telegram on September 20 that the referendums on Ukraine’s occupied territories are “essential” to “reinstate the historic justice.”

“After [the referendums] are carried out and the brand new territories turn out to be a part of Russia, the geopolitical transformation on this planet will tackle an irreversible character,” Medvedev wrote, including that makes an attempt to encroach Russia’s territory is a criminal offense and Russia might use “all technique of self-defense” after the Ukrainian territories turn out to be a part of Russia.

With reporting by dpa, AFP, Reuters, and AP



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