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International community calls on Russia to withdraw from Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant

International community calls on Russia to withdraw from Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant

EU member states and other countries in the international community have issued a statement on the situation around the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, and have called on Russia to withdraw its troops from the territory of the plant. In a statement the 42 countries called on Russia to immediately withdraw its military forces and all other unauthorised personnel from the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, its immediate surroundings, and all of Ukraine so that the operator and the Ukrainian authorities can resume their sovereign responsibilities within Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders and the legitimate operating staff can conduct their duties without outside interference, threat, or unacceptably harsh working conditions. This will also enable the IAEA to carry out its verification pursuant to Ukraine’s safeguards obligations under safe and secure conditions and in a timely manner. The statement said that the international community will hold Russia accountable for its aggression, and Russia must bear full responsibility for its unlawful actions in Ukraine.
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UN warns Da'esh remains a serious global terrorist threat

UN warns Da'esh remains a serious global terrorist threat

The UN has warned of a continued threat from the Islamist terrorist group Daesh. In a joint briefing to the Security Council on Tuesday (9 August), UN counterterrorism officials confirmed that the threat posed by Da’esh terrorist fighters and their affiliates remains “global and evolving”.  “Da’esh and its affiliates continue to exploit conflict dynamics, governance fragilities and inequality to incite, plan and organize terrorist attacks,” said UN counter-terrorism chief Vladimir Voronkov, presenting the Secretary-General’s fifteenth report. They also exploit pandemic restrictions, misuse digital spaces to recruit sympathizers and have “significantly” increased the use of unmanned aerial systems, as reported in northern Iraq.  In charting the of Da’esh expansion across Iraq, Syria and through areas of Africa that until recently had been largely spared from attacks, Mr. Voronkov attributed their success in part to a decentralized structure focused around a “general directorate of provinces” and associated “offices”. These operate in both Iraq and Syria, as well as outside the core conflict zone – notably in Afghanistan, Somalia and the Lake Chad Basin. Better understanding and monitoring, including through global and regional cooperation, are vital to counter the threat.

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The Kremlin is keeping Beijing informed of its talks with US and the west

The Kremlin is keeping Beijing informed of its talks with US and the west

Russia's ambassador to China, Andrey Denisov, on Tuesday (25 January) revealed that Moscow had been keeping Beijing informed on the content and progress of its security talks with the United States and Nato countries. Russia's president Vladimir Putin is expected in Beijing next week for the opening of the Winter Olympics.
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NATO sends additional military forces to Eastern Europe because of Russian threat

NATO sends additional military forces to Eastern Europe because of Russian threat

NATO is sending extra reinforcements to its member states in Eastern European because of Russia's military troop build-up on the border with Ukraine. The deployment includes frigates, fighter jets and troops for "collective defence". The reinforcements will be stationed in the Baltic Sea and Lithuania, among other places. A Russian invasion of Ukraine now appears increasingly likely, and the US and a number of western countries have evacuated non essential staff from their missions in Kyiv.
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US tells Russia in no uncertain terms: Don't do it!

US tells Russia in no uncertain terms: Don't do it!

The US, NATO, the EU and their members and partners believe Russia is about to intervene militarily in Ukraine. The message from US Secretary of State Blinken to Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, at their talks in Geneva on Friday was clear and simple, "Don't do it, because the consequences will be swift and severe".
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Blinken flies to Europe as fears increase of an imminent Russian invasion of Ukraine

Blinken flies to Europe as fears increase of an imminent Russian invasion of Ukraine

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken is in Kiev for talks with the Ukrainian leadership as fears increase of an imminent Russian invasion. In Brussels, European Union officials are bracing themselves for the biggest crisis on the European continent since the war in Yugoslavia in the early 1990s. There are still some hopes that Russia will de-escalate the situation, but most observers think this is now unlikely and that some sort of aggression - even if not an all-out invasion - is imminent.
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NATO-Russia Council meets for a "not an easy discussion"

NATO-Russia Council meets for a "not an easy discussion"

Speaking at a press conference after the meeting at NATO headquarters in Brussles, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, who chaired the meeting, said: “This was not an easy discussion, but that is exactly why it was so important.” He noted that NATO Allies are ready to meet again with Russia to discuss a number of topics in greater detail and to put concrete proposals on the table. “There are opportunities for constructive engagement which should not be missed, in the interest of security in Europe,” he said.
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A week of intensive diplomacy as the west engages with Russia on Ukraine and disarmament issues

A week of intensive diplomacy as the west engages with Russia on Ukraine and disarmament issues

NATO Secretary-General, Jens Stoltenberg, warned that the buildup of Russian military forces and equipment along the Ukrainian border is continuing and that Russia has failed to respond to international appeals and pressure for de-escalation in recent weeks. Stoltenberg was speaking after an extraordinary virtual meeting with all NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs, held on Friday, 7 January.