While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, March 4

Russian President Vladimir Putin (above) said in a televised address that Moscow’s advance in Ukraine was “going to plan”. PHOTO: REUTERS

Putin says Ukraine advance ‘going to plan’

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Moscow’s advance in Ukraine was “going to plan” and Kyiv appealed for Western military aid on Thursday, even as the warring sides met for ceasefire talks.

After the fall of a first major Ukrainian city to Russian forces, Putin appeared in no mood to heed a global clamour for hostilities to end as the war entered its second week.

Putin again said Russia was rooting out “neo-Nazis”, adding during the televised opening of a national security council meeting that he “will never give up on (his) conviction that Russians and Ukrainians are one people.”

He earlier told French President Emmanuel Macron that Moscow “intends to continue the uncompromising fight against militants of nationalist armed groups”, according to a Kremlin account of their call.


Ukraine, Russia agree evacuation corridors; more US sanctions

Remote video URL

Russia and Ukraine agreed on Thursday to the need for humanitarian corridors to help civilians escape Moscow's eight-day-long invasion, the first apparent progress in talks, as the United States and Britain hit more oligarchs with sanctions.

Thousands are thought to have died or been wounded as the biggest attack on a European state since World War II unfolds, creating one million refugees, hits to Russia's economy and fears of wider conflict in the West unthought-of for decades.

Russian forces, however, have continued to surround and attack Ukrainian cities, including Mariupol, the main port in the east which has been under heavy bombardment, with no water or power. Officials say they cannot evacuate the wounded.


Ukraine war sends Western anxiety soaring on back of pandemic

Just as millions of people dared to hope a two-year pandemic was receding, war broke out in Ukraine, triggering a new surge of anxiety in Western Europe and fears about wider conflict - or worse.

As the West faces a possible new Cold War and warnings about heightened nuclear threats fill social media and the airwaves, many people are struggling with the sudden new world order, even if they are living thousands of miles away from the frontlines in Ukraine.

Chogwu Enape, a 29-year-old policy researcher based in Paris, said she had not been able to sleep properly since Russia invaded Ukraine last week.


France's Macron launches bid for second term as president

French President Emmanuel Macron announced on Thursday he would run for a second term in April's election, seeking a mandate to steer the euro zone's second-largest economy through the fallout from Russia's invasion of Ukraine and the Covid-19 pandemic.

Macron announced his bid in a letter published by several regional newspapers.

If he succeeds, he would be the first French leader for two decades to win a renewed term in office.


US recovers stealth jet lost in South China Sea

The United States Navy said on Thursday it had recovered a stealth fighter jet that sank in the South China Sea after crashing off an aircraft carrier while trying to land.

A major recovery operation was launched to find the plane - one of the most advanced in the US military - after it was lost in an area of rising tensions between the United States and China.

Seven sailors were injured in the Jan 24 "landing mishap" on the USS Carl Vinson, but the pilot ejected to safety and was rescued by helicopter.


Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.