Ukraine live blog: ++ Norway wants to ban Russian tourists from entering ++

live blog

Status: 23.05.2024 11:31 a.m.

Norway wants to tighten its entry restrictions for Russian citizens and largely deny entry to tourists. Chechnya’s ruler Kadyrov offers Russia more fighters. All developments in the live blog.

At least four people are said to have been killed in Russian attacks on the Kharkiv region. This was announced by the governor of the region. The target of the Russian attacks was primarily civilian infrastructure. There were also several injuries. Two people were missing.

The mayor of the city of Kharkiv, Ihor Terekhov, spoke of one death and at least six injuries. The attacks caused a large fire to break out, which could increase the number of victims.

Last year, around 977,000 refugees from Ukraine were registered in Germany as asylum seekers. This is according to data from the Federal Statistical Office. Asylum seekers are foreign nationals who are staying in Germany on the basis of international law, humanitarian or political reasons.

Norway will further restrict access for Russian tourists due to the ongoing war in Ukraine and block almost all entries. “The decision to tighten entry regulations is in line with Norway’s approach to supporting allies and partners in response to Russia’s illegal war of aggression against Ukraine,” the Reuters news agency quoted Justice Minister Emilie Enger Mehl as saying.

Russian citizens who want to come to Norway for a holiday or non-essential trip will be denied entry. Exceptions could be granted in cases such as visiting close family members residing in Norway, the ministry said.

According to the Russian military, its own air force is said to have repelled more than 30 missiles fired by Ukraine at the Russian Belgorod region during the night. Three drones were also destroyed.

British Defense Secretary Grant Shapps has accused China of providing Russia with “lethal aid” for its war against Ukraine. “We have evidence that Russia and China are cooperating on combat equipment for use in Ukraine,” Shapps said at a conference in London. British military intelligence and US intelligence services “can reveal that lethal aid is flowing from China to Russia and Ukraine.” In this context, Shapps urged NATO countries to increase their defense spending.

White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, however, did not confirm Shapp’s allegations. He said the possibility that China “could provide weapons – lethal support – directly to Russia” had been a concern before, but “to date we have not seen that.” However, the US is concerned about what China is doing to “fuel Russia’s war machine” – not through direct arms supplies, but through advances to the Russian defense industry.

The Ukrainian General Staff has reported further fighting in the Donbass region. In the region northwest of the city of Avdiivka alone, 25 battles were recorded. “In particular, the enemy is trying to penetrate our combat formations with assault groups and equipment,” the military said. A Russian Su-25 fighter jet was shot down in the region.

The governor of the region around the city of Kherson also reported Russian shelling. Explosions were heard on the Dnipro River.

Conflict parties as a source

In the current situation, information on the course of the war, shelling and casualties provided by official bodies of the Russian and Ukrainian parties to the conflict cannot be directly verified by an independent body.

Sweden wants to invest a further 6.5 billion euros in military aid for Ukraine, spread over the years 2024 to 2026. This was announced by Sweden’s Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson and stressed on the short message service X: “Ukraine’s cause is Sweden’s cause.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyj thanked for the support. “This is really tangible and will strengthen not only us, not only Ukraine, but the entire European area from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea,” he said in a video message.

The leader of the Chechnya region in the South Caucasus, Ramzan Kadyrov, offered Russian President Vladimir Putin at a joint meeting to send more fighters to the war against Ukraine. Kadyrov said on social media that tens of thousands of “well-trained and equipped fighters from the reserves” were ready to fight for Russia in Ukraine if such an order was given. So far, around 43,500 fighters from Chechnya have already been deployed for Russia in Ukraine.

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