Ukraine latest: Estonia says NATO expansion will take time

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(Bloomberg) – Estonian President Alaris Karis says he is confident that Sweden and Finland can overcome Turkey’s objections to joining NATO through negotiations, but that the expansion of the defense alliance will take longer than initially expected.

Turkey has so far blocked the expansion, saying it has given too much support to Kurdish groups considering them terrorists.

“Maybe in 6 months,” Caris told Bloomberg next to Davos. “It simply came to our notice then. But again, especially at this stage of the process, it is very difficult to predict. “

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Russia’s Security Council Secretary Nikolai Patrushev has said his country will take NATO expansion as a direct threat to its security and will have to respond.

In Ukraine, Russian-based occupying authorities in the Kherson region have said they would seek a military base there to perpetuate their presence.

Core development

Russia’s victory over global food crisis has helped make Putin’s state oil champion the biggest production drop.

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Estonia says Turkey’s NATO objection could be overcome (10:57 am)

Estonian President Alaris Karis has said he is confident talks with Turkey will overcome their objections to Sweden and Finland joining NATO.

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But he told Bloomberg, next to Davos, that the dispute could slow down their inclusion in the defensive alliance. “Maybe in 6 months,” he said. “It simply came to our notice then. But again, especially at this stage of the process, it is very difficult to predict. “

Asked what the reaction would be if Turkey refused to move, he replied: “I don’t know, I don’t think so. NATO is a coalition and then we have to think about it. I do not know whether it is right to veto a country or whether we should have a voting system.

Russia wins food crisis (10:45 am)

Russia’s war against Ukraine has deepened the global food crisis. It also turned the attacker into one of the biggest winners in the chaos it helped create

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The war has cut off Ukraine’s grain exports by sea, cutting off vital supplies to countries from Somalia to Egypt. Due to the hot weather and drought that is affecting wheat crops in other parts of the world, grain prices have reached record highs.

Russia continues to ship its wheat at the now-high price, is looking for willing buyers and is earning more revenue per tonne. It also expects bumper wheat yields next season, suggesting it will continue to profit from the situation.

Russia builds Donbass ‘dormitory,’ says Zelensky (10:59 am)

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has accused Russia of turning the eastern Donbass region into a “slaughterhouse” because it is trying to drive Ukrainian troops out of the region.

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On Monday night, Zelensky said in his daily statement that the Russians were trying to find “anything living in the area.”

Russia did not immediately return a request for comment.

The General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces said in a statement that the fighting was most active near Lysichansk and Siviarodonetsk, with Russian forces trying to encircle the cities and reach the administrative borders of the Luhansk region. Russian troops have continued firing and are gathering forces to resume their offensive in Zaporizhia.

Novak of Russia visits Iran on Wednesday (10:32 am)

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak will hold talks with Iranian officials on trade and transportation during his visit to Tehran on Wednesday, the semi-official Mehr news agency quoted an Iranian minister as saying.

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Iran’s Roads Minister Rostam Gasemi has said that they want to discuss the transportation of goods from Russia through Iran to Asian markets like India, according to Mehr.

Iran’s Deputy Foreign Minister for Economic Affairs Mehdi Safari told state media on May 7 that Novak would attend a meeting of the Iran-Russia Joint Economic Commission.

Germany will return to coal if Russia cuts gas (10:30 am)

Germany plans to reactivate coal and oil power plants after Russian President Vladimir Putin decides to cut off gas exports to the country.

Economy Minister Robert Habek will issue an emergency decree on Tuesday that will allow the government to reactivate shutdown plants in line with Germany’s coal extraction plan.

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According to a decree obtained by Bloomberg, “this means that short-term use of coal-fired power plants in the power sector is possible on demand.”

Ruble climb for the fifth day (10:10 am)

Russia’s currency has rallied to its strongest level against the dollar in four years, prompting a warning from one of President Vladimir Putin’s staunchest allies that gains could be excessive.

The ruble was strong against the dollar on the fifth day, trading up 2.2%, even after Russia relaxed capital controls on Monday by reducing the amount needed to convert foreign currency exporters.

The Russian currency is the best performer in the world this year with a gain of about 30% against the dollar. But its recovery since the invasion of Ukraine has been so rapid that economists are warning that the price hike will disrupt budget revenues and bar exporters from competing.

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Russia says NATO expansion is a threat (10:09 am)

Russia is not adhering to Ukraine’s deadline and will continue to do so until it meets all its objectives, Interfax quoted Nikolai Patrushev, Russia’s Security Council secretary, as saying.

Patrushev further warned that Russia would view Finland and Sweden’s accession to NATO as a direct threat to its security and would have to respond. Turkey has so far blocked plans to expand the defense alliance.

European gas rises at Russia’s risk (9:57 am)

European natural gas prices have risen, focusing on potential further disruptions to market supply, even as reserves rise.

Benchmark Dutch front-month futures rose as much as 3.6%, closing three sessions of losses. In recent days, the deal has been trading close to the level just before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in late February.

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Traders focus on blocking supplies from Russia, Europe’s largest supplier. The country cut off flows to Finland last week and to Poland and Bulgaria last month due to disputes over payments.

Europe asked to tap on frozen Russian resources (9:10 am)

The finance ministers of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Slovakia have requested in a joint statement to the European Commission to allow the use of Russia’s frozen resources for the reconstruction of Ukraine.

“A lot of funding will be needed to rebuild Ukraine,” said Lithuanian Finance Minister Jintar Skyste. “Russia must be held accountable for its actions and pay the price for the damage caused.”

Kherson occupiers looking for Russian base (6:00 am)

The Russian-based occupying authority in the Kherson region of Ukraine will apply to Moscow to establish a permanent military base there, RIA Novosti reports, the latest step towards stabilizing their occupation.

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The RIA Novosti quoted Kirill Stremasov, the deputy head of the occupying regime, as saying that they would request the establishment of a base to ensure security. Moscow has not yet announced plans for a permanent military presence in the occupied territories, but the Kremlin plans to integrate them closely with Russia.

Stremasov reiterated that the occupying authorities plan to apply to Russia for annexation of the territory, with the aim of completing preparations for a referendum on the issue by the end of the year.

Ukraine has promised to regain control of territory occupied by Russian forces since the beginning of the February 24 aggression.

Russia sees less oil champ output (6:00 am)

According to Bloomberg calculations based on industry data, the initial throughput of Russia’s largest refiner fell by about 28% in the first days of May compared to pre-war levels.

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Rosneft PJSC’s chief executive, Igor Sechin, has been in Putin’s inner circle for decades, and the agency’s affiliates have been responsible for nearly two-thirds of Russia’s production since the Ukraine invasion, according to the energy ministry.

Biden warns of humanitarian catastrophe (3:51 am)

Speaking at the opening of a summit of leaders in Tokyo between fellow quad members Australia, India and Japan, Biden said Russia’s “brutal and unprovoked war against Ukraine was a humanitarian catastrophe.”

“It seems to me that Putin is just trying to extinguish the culture,” Biden said. “He is not even targeting military targets.” Biden is seeking the support of quad leaders because they are fighting a war that has wreaked havoc on the economy and created a food crisis.

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Royal Navy may escort grain ship (1:03 am)

According to The Times of Britain, Britain is in talks with its allies to send warships to the Black Sea to protect Ukraine’s cargo ships. The foreign ministers of Lithuania and the United Kingdom have discussed the idea of ​​breaking the Russian blockade to include NATO-dependent countries.

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabriel Landsbergis told the Guardian this week that his country was seeking a “willing” naval alliance to lift Russia’s Black Sea blockade on Ukraine’s grain exports.

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