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Ukraine and Russia: What you need to know right now

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By Reuters

– Russian forces have taken control of a town where workers at the defunct Chernobyl nuclear plant live, the governor of Kyiv region said, and fighting was reported in the streets of the besieged southern port of Mariupol.

FIGHTING

* Russian forces have taken control of the town of Slavutych, where workers at the defunct Chernobyl nuclear plant live, the governor of Kyiv region, Oleksandr Pavlyuk, said.

* The mayor of the besieged southeastern port of Mariupol, Vadym Boichenko, said the situation in city remained critical, with street fighting taking place in its centre.

* Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu was seen chairing an army meeting and discussing weapons supplies in a video posted by his ministry, the first time he had publicly been shown speaking for more than two weeks.

* Russia said on Friday the first phase of its military operation in Ukraine was mostly complete and it would focus on “liberating” the Donbass region.

CIVILIANS

* The mayor of Mariupol said he had spoken to France’s ambassador to Ukraine about options for evacuating civilians, after French President Emmanuel Macron said he would propose to Russia a plan to help people leave.

* Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said agreement has been reached on the establishment of 10 humanitarian corridors on Saturday to evacuate civilians from front line hotspots in Ukrainian towns and cities.

* More than 100,000 people still need to be evacuated from Mariupol, Vereshchuk said.

* The war in Ukraine has killed 136 children in the 31 days since the start of the Russian invasion, Ukraine’s office of the prosecutor general said.

ENERGY/MARKETS/BUSINESS

* The Russian central bank said the Moscow Exchange will resume trading on Monday, with Russian shares and bonds in normal mode, albeit for half a day.

* Ukraine’s Zelenskiy called on energy producing countries to increase output so that Russia cannot use its oil and gas wealth to “blackmail” other nations.

COMING UP

* U.S. President Joe Biden is due to give a speech in the late afternoon in Warsaw saying the “free world” opposes Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.