Russia-Ukraine Live News: Risk of Nuclear Use Highest in Decades | Russo-Ukrainian War

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  • A weapons research institute says the risk of nuclear war is higher today than at any time since the height of the Cold War.
  • Russian flags flutter on a highway leading to the strategic port city of Mariupol, with the sign indicating the entrance to the city painted in the colors of the Russian flag.
  • Kremlin-installed officials in occupied southern Ukraine celebrated Russia Day on Sunday and began issuing Russian passports to Melitopol residents, Russian state-owned RIA Novosti reported.
  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has said Russian casualties since the start of the war could exceed 40,000 by June.
  • Pro-Russian separatists in Donetsk have upheld the death sentences of two Britons and a Moroccan for fighting with the Ukrainian army.
(Al Jazeera)

Here are the latest updates:

Russian mountaineer hoists Ukrainian flag on Everest

A Russian mountaineer and blogger took a stand against her country’s invasion of Ukraine by unfurling the Ukrainian flag when she summited Mount Everest.

The photo of Ekaterina Lipka on the summit of Everest has gone viral after it was shared by former Ukrainian ambassador to Austria Olexander Scherba on Twitter last Sunday.

The climber also posted a photo of herself on the mountain with a sign that read ‘Free Navalny’, in support of Alexei Navalny, an anti-corruption campaigner and opposition leader in Russia who was sentenced in March to nine years in a penal colony.


McDonald’s Russian successor opens in Moscow

Three months after McDonald’s operations in Russia were suspended, hundreds of people flocked to its famous former outlet in Moscow’s Pushkin Square as the restaurant reopened on Sunday under Russian ownership and a new name.

The logo is different, but still evokes the golden arcs: a circle and two yellow oblongs – representing a beef patty and fries. It was only a few hours before the opening of the restaurant in Pushkin Square that the new name of the Russian chain was announced: Vkusno-i Tochka (savory period).

Fifteen of the old McDonald’s were to reopen on Sunday in Moscow. Oleg Paroev, the chain’s general manager, said he was aiming to open 200 by the end of the month.

McDonald’s sold its 850 restaurants to businessman Alexander Govor, who held licenses for 25 franchises in Siberia.

Staff members wait for visitors at a newly opened fast food restaurant in a former McDonald's store on Bolshaya Bronnaya street in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, June 12, 2022
Staff members wait for visitors at a newly opened fast food restaurant in a former McDonald’s store on Bolshaya Bronnaya street in Moscow, Russia, Sunday, June 12, 2022 [Dmitry Serebryakov/AP]

An exhibition in Kyiv presents the remnants of Russia’s war against Ukraine

An exhibition was inaugurated in Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital, presenting the paraphernalia of the ongoing war in the country.

Captured vehicles and collected missile remains, down to the slippers, toothbrushes and burner phones the Russian military used and left behind, were on display at the National Museum of Ukrainian History during the Second World War.

The head of the education department, Dmytro Hainetdinov, said that many of the objects had been collected by museum staff during visits to newly liberated areas in order to “highlight certain particular facets of the war waged by Russia. against Ukraine”.

“The purpose of this exhibition is to raise awareness about this war using authentic objects,” Hainetdinov said.

Russian boots are displayed at an exhibition in Kyiv, Ukraine.
Russian boots are displayed at an exhibition in Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, June 12, 2022. Discarded items from the Russian military are part of an exhibition dedicated to the devastation of the ongoing war [Natacha Pisarenko/AP]

Global nuclear arsenals set to rise, says arms research institute

The global stockpile of nuclear weapons could soon rise again for the first time since the Cold War due to global tensions, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) has said.

“Russia has even made open threats about the possible use of nuclear weapons in the context of the war in Ukraine,” SIPRI said in a summary launching its 2022 yearbook.

“While there have been significant gains in both nuclear arms control and nuclear disarmament over the past year, the risk of nuclear weapons use appears higher now than at any time. time since the height of the Cold War,” said SIPRI director Dan Smith.

Last year saw a slight reduction in the total number of nuclear warheads to around 12,705 worldwide. About 90% of all nuclear weapons are held by the United States and Russia.


Zelenskyy accuses Russian generals of using soldiers as ‘cannon fodder’

Zelenskyy said Moscow’s tactics had not changed during the war and poorly trained Russian reserves were now deployed in the Battle of Donbass, where “every yard” is contested.

“The Russian army is trying to deploy reserve forces in the Donbass. But what reservations can they have now? Zelenskyy asked in his daily address to the nation.

“It looks like they will try to throw into battle the poorly trained conscripts and those who have been gathered by secret mobilization,” he said.

“Russian generals see their people simply as the cannon fodder they need to gain a numerical advantage,” he added.


Russian war casualties could exceed 40,000 this month: Ukrainian president

Zelenskyy said Russian casualties since the start of the war could top 40,000 by June.

Addressing the nation on Sunday in his 109th daily address since the start of the Russian invasion, Zelenskyy also reiterated Ukraine’s call for advanced air defense systems from the West.

He said such defenses could have averted many tragedies, including an airstrike on Ternopil on Sunday that injured 10 people, including a 12-year-old girl.

Zelenskyy said such incidents replaced Peter the Great and novelist Leo Tolstoy as the way the world now views Russia.


Russia destroys bridge over Ukrainian river, cutting off escape route

Russian forces blew up a bridge connecting the besieged Ukrainian city of Severodonetsk to another town across the river, cutting off a possible escape route for civilians, local officials said.

Russian forces have taken most of the town, but Ukrainian troops still control an industrial area and the Azot chemical plant, where hundreds of civilians have taken refuge.

But the Russians destroyed a bridge over the Siverskyi Donets River linking Severodonetsk to its twin city of Lysychansk, Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai said.

“If after new bombardments the bridge collapses, the city will be truly cut off. There will be no way to leave Severodonetsk in a vehicle,” Haidai said, noting the lack of a ceasefire agreement and agreed evacuation corridors.


Russian flags seen at the entrance to Mariupol

A new city sign painted in the colors of the Russian flag has been unveiled on the outskirts of Mariupol, replacing a monument that had been in Ukrainian blue and gold.

Russian flags also flew on a highway leading to the port city, which is now fully under the control of Moscow-backed forces.

According to Kremlin-installed authorities, the seaport is now ready to operate as usual and was used to ship goods to and from Russia.

People stand near the name of the city of Mariupol written in Russian and painted in the colors of the Russian national flag during the Russia Day celebration in Mariupol, June 12, 2022
People stand near the name of the city of Mariupol written in Russian and painted in the colors of the Russian national flag during the Russia Day celebration in Mariupol, June 12, 2022 [AP Photo]

For June 12 updates, please click here.

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