April 3, 2022Newsletter

Russia Update: Weekend Roundup


Italy says it’s ready to guarantee Ukraine’s security. Ukraine is reportedly holding talks with China on security guarantees as well, with Ukraine’s Foreign Minister talking with his Chinese counterpart today.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken will travel to Belgium Tuesday through Thursday for NATO’s Foreign Ministerial. State Blinken also appeared on CNN’s State of the Union and NBC’s Meet the Press over the weekend but didn’t say anything terribly revelatory on sanctions or otherwise. The President of the European Parliament met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Kyiv. Greece’s Foreign Minister visited Odesa in southern Ukraine.

The U.S. canceled an ICBM test that it had previously delayed. Reports of a massive pre-invasion cyberattack by China on Ukraine may have been exaggerated. Finland will decide on joining NATO within weeks.


Disturbing pictures from Bucha, outside Kyiv, of hundreds of dead civilians, with mass graves and apparent executions, are providing new impetus for sanctions (will refrain from linking to pictures right now, but they are pretty widely available) and could poison ceasefire talks. Many observers warn that Bucha could only be the beginning. Meanwhile, Russia is blaming Ukraine and saying the reports are fake.

The U.S. is weighing additional unspecified sanctions, but it could include secondary sanctions and target other sectors of Russia’s economy. The EU has promised more sanctions and will meet Wednesday to discuss. Germany said that banning Russian gas should be on the table, although Poland’s Prime Minister said that Germany remains the main roadblock for expanding sanctions. French President Emmanuel Macron called for a ban on Russian coal and oil imports. The UK’s Foreign Minister will visit Poland and call for stronger sanctions too.

The Commerce Department added 120 Russian and Belarusian entities to the Entity List.

Russian ships are switching their flags to other countries as a potential way to avoid sanctions.


Latvia and Lithuania will no longer import Russian gas.

The “hacktivist” collective Anonymous has said it will target Western companies still doing business in Russia.

Ukraine Sitrep

Ukraine’s Economy Ministry says the economy contracted by 16% in Q1 and could contract by 40% in 2022. Ukraine recaptured the entire Kyiv region.

Reuters reports that ill-equipped Russian conscripts are on the front lines in eastern Ukraine for now.

The U.S. will work with allies to send Soviet-era tanks to Ukraine. All 2,000 Javelin anti-tank missiles that were part of an $800 million U.S. military assistance package have been delivered, while he Defense Department announced $300 million in additional military assistance for Ukraine. Australia will send armored vehicles to Ukraine.

The International Red Cross abandoned its humanitarian convoy to Mariupol again.

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