(Bloomberg) — Talks between Ukraine and Russia will resume Friday via video link, following meetings earlier in the week in Turkey. Russia said two Ukrainian military helicopters made a rare strike across the border, hitting an oil tank facility in the city of Belgorod. There was no immediate confirmation from Kyiv. In Ukraine, Kyiv said its forces retook several villages in the Kherson region to the south.
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The United Nations said relief convoys had so far failed to reach Mariupol, with the southern port city devastated by weeks of shelling. Russia said a humanitarian corridor from Mariupol was planned for Friday.
President Vladimir Putin said Russia would continue supplying gas to Europe even as it demands customers pay in rubles, easing fears the change could lead to damaging disruptions. European Union leaders plan to warn Putin’s key ally China that it will suffer a blow to its global role if it offers support for the invasion.
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All times CET:
Russia Confirms Ukraine Talks by Videolink: Tass (11:01 a.m.)
Tass cited an unidentified person from the Russian side of negotiations saying talks with Ukraine would resume Friday via video.
Russia’s Yamal-Europe Gas Pipeline Flows in Reverse (10:29 a.m.)
Russian gas flows via the Yamal-Europe pipeline reversed this morning, with fuel flowing from Germany to Poland — the opposite of the normal direction. That’s been a common occurrence for this pipeline over the past few months, and doesn’t signal a halt in Russian gas flows to Europe. In many cases, it just shows German companies are ordering less gas, while demand in Poland is higher.
Flows via Nord Stream, the direct link to Germany, were near the pipeline’s full capacity.
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Natural Gas Fluctuates as Traders Weigh Putin’s Demand (9:43 a.m.)
Natural gas prices in Europe fluctuated as traders weighed the potential impact on the market by Russia’s decision to shift payment for its supplies to rubles, with colder weather also set to boost demand.
European stocks and U.S. equity futures rose slightly as investors evaluated the economic outlook amid moderating oil prices, tightening Federal Reserve monetary policy and Russia’s war in Ukraine.
Russian-Linked Containers Pile Up in Rotterdam (9:34 a.m.)
Measures taken against Russia are snarling thousands of steel shipping containers in Rotterdam as each box needs to be carefully inspected to make sure moving it won’t somehow breach sanctions, according to the CEO of the massive port.
His comments gave unique insights into how the beating heart of Europe’s real economy is being battered by measures taken against Moscow after its invasion of Ukraine.
Ukrainian Retakes Ground in Kherson, Chernihiv Regions (8:49 a.m.)
Eleven villages in the southern Kherson region and several others in the Chernihiv region northeast of Kyiv have been returned to Ukrainian control, according to the military’s General Staff. Shelling of towns and villages along the contact line in the east continued overnight, with civilian casualties reported after nine apartment buildings and nine private houses were shelled.
The intensity of shelling declined in Chernihiv and Kharkiv, although a missile hit the center of Kharkiv Thursday night. Fighting continues near Chernihiv, Izyum and at the border of Kherson and Mykolayiv regions to the south.
Refugees Arriving in Poland Now Top 2.4 Million (8:45 a.m.)
Another 23,000 people arrived in Poland from Ukraine on Thursday, and another 3,500 early Friday, taking total refugees since Feb. 24 to 2.415 million, Polish border authorities said.
Over 4 million people have fled Ukraine since the start of the Russian invasion.
Ukraine Said to Makes Rare Strike in Russian Territory (8:30 a.m.)
Moscow said two Ukrainian military helicopters attacked an oil-storage facility in the Russian city of Belgorod, about 50 km (30 miles) north of the border, causing a large fire early Friday.
Tass quoted Belgorod Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov as saying the aircraft flew in at low altitude. Eight oil fuel tanks were burning and authorities said the fire might spread. Two workers were reported to have been injured and nearby residents were being evacuated.
Focused on fighting Russian troops on their own territory since Feb Ukrainian forces haven’t claimed any strikes on the other side of the border since the start of the war on Feb. 24.
World Underestimating Impact of War, OECD Says (8:00 a.m.)
Governments aren’t sufficiently aware of the longer-lasting economic fallout from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, said OECD Chief Economist Laurence Boone.
“I really believe we’re underestimating the medium-term impact of this war,” Boone told Bloomberg Television’s Francine Lacqua in Cernobbio, Italy, on Friday. “The longer the war will last, the more uncertainty we have, and the more worried we’re getting because uncertainty deters consumer purchases and business investment.”
Russia Redeploying Forces From Georgia, UK. Says (7:45 a.m.)
Russia is redeploying as many of 2,000 troops from Georgia to reinforce its invasion of Ukraine, the UK. defense ministry said. The forces are being reorganized into battalion tactical groups.
“It is highly unlikely that Russia planned to generate reinforcements in this manner and it is indicative of the unexpected losses it has sustained during the invasion,” the UK. said.
EU to Warn China Over Russia (6:00 a.m.)
European Union leaders plan to tell President Xi Jinping in a virtual summit that China will hurt its global stature if it hands Russia an economic or military lifeline. That pointed message will test Beijing’s commitment to keeping the war from damaging its ties with Brussels.
Russia Jamming Jet Navigation, France Says (6:00 a.m.)
Russia’s military has been jamming satellite navigation systems used by commercial aircraft since the invasion of Ukraine, highlighting the need for robust alternatives, according to a French safety regulator.
Airline pilots have reported disruptions in regions around the Black Sea, eastern Finland and the Kaliningrad enclave, said Benoit Roturier, head of satellite navigation at France’s civil aviation authority DGAC. The interference appears to be caused by Russian trucks carrying jamming equipment typically used to protect troops and installations against GPS-guided missiles, he said.
Russia Is Jamming Jet Navigation, French Safety Official Says
Russia Says Ukraine Struck Oil Facility Near Belgorod (5:20 a.m.)
Russia said two Ukrainian helicopters crossed the border and attacked an oil-storage facility in the city of Belgorod, causing a large fire early Friday.
Tass quoted Belgorod Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov as saying the aircraft flew in at low altitude. Eight oil fuel tanks were burning and authorities said the fire might spread. Two workers were reported injured and nearby residents were being evacuated.
Focused on fighting Russian troops on their own territory, Ukrainian forces haven’t claimed any strikes on the other side of the border since the start of the war. There was no immediate comment from Kyiv on the Belgorod fire.
Stocks Mixed as Crude Oil Drops (5:08 a.m.)
U.S. equity futures pushed higher and Asian stocks were mixed as investors evaluated the economic outlook amid moderating oil prices, tightening Federal Reserve policy and the war.
Oil held losses on a move by the U.S. to release roughly a million barrels a day from reserves to tackle rising energy costs. Russia’s invasion has disrupted commodity flows, fanning prices for everything from fuel to food.
China Minister Says No One Can Split G-20 (4:51 a.m.)
All members of the Group of 20 nations have equal status and no one has the power to split the group, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said, according to a ministry statement. Biden has previously said Russia should be removed from the G-20.
Japan Won’t Exit Sakhalin-1 or 2 (4:00 a.m)
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said the country won’t withdraw from the Sakhalin-1 or 2 oil and gas project in Russia.
Resource-poor Japan currently gets 3.6% of its imported crude oil from Russia, while roughly 90% of it comes from Middle Eastern countries, according to trade ministry data. Japan procures 9% of its LNG and 13% of its thermal coal imports from Russia.
UN Aid Convoy Reached Sumy, Mariupol Blocked (10:40 p.m.)
The United Nations said its aid convoy was able to get through to the northeastern city of Sumy, where it delivered food, medicine and other supplies. But it said that the UN and partners have still not been able to deliver aid to other regions, including Mariupol.
Ukraine Says Russian Forces Exposed to Radiation (9:33 p.m.)
Russian troops began leaving the Chernobyl nuclear plant after soldiers got “significant doses” of radiation from digging trenches at the highly contaminated site, Ukraine’s state power company said.
The International Atomic Energy Agency said it was unable to confirm the reports of radiation exposure and is “seeking further information.” The IAEA said it was told by Ukrainian officials that Russia has transferred control of the facility, in writing, back to Ukraine.
Ukraine Says Less Than 1,500 People Evacuated Thursday (9:08 p.m.)
Despite guarantees from the International Red Cross and Moscow, Russian troops blocked Ukrainian buses from entering Berdyansk, a port about 90 kilometers (56 miles) from Mariupol, and Melitopol, Vereshchuk said.
At the requests of French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Russia will open a humanitarian corridor from Mariupol to Kyiv-controlled territory on Friday as well, Ria Novosti reported, citing the Defense Ministry.
White House Jabs Putin, Again (8:21 p.m.)
Biden said there are signs that Putin has fired or detained key advisers.
“There’s a lot of speculation,” Biden said, adding that Putin “seems self-isolated.” Biden also said it’s an “open question” how misinformed Putin is about the status of his military’s efforts in Ukraine.
“But I don’t want to put too much stock in at this time because we don’t have that much hard evidence,” he added.
Russian Forces Seen Leaving Chernobyl (7:50 p.m.)
Ukraine’s nuclear regulator said the head of Russian troops at the Chernobyl facility said they are departing after taking the facility infamous for its 1986 meltdown in the early days of the war.
Leonid Oliynyk, Energoatom’s spokesman, confirmed a letter posted on Telegram announcing the departure. Oliynyk — who isn’t at Chernobyl — said he was told that most Russian troops left the facility in two columns and appeared headed toward Belarus. It didn’t appear that all Russian troops had departed, however.