London: Indian citizens besieged in Ukraine’s southeast Mariupol region, particularly in Sumy, are reportedly still stranded and unable to escape the safety of an escalating war as Russia and Ukraine continue to disagree on a humanitarian corridor for civilians outside the conflict zone. About 700 Indians live in Sumy.
About half of the people sleeping in underground shelters without food, water, electricity and heating in Mariupol were due to be evacuated on Sunday, but the ceasefire agreement collapsed.
Reuters news agency said Moscow would “let residents of Ukraine’s two main cities (Kiev and Kharkiv) flee down corridors to Russia and Belarus.” Ukraine called it “an immoral blow”.
Ukrainians interviewed by the BBC at Ukrainian stations about to board trains to western Ukraine and onward to European Union countries said they would neither go to Russia nor in Belarus.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told media on Monday that Russia would end its military action in Ukraine if the latter stopped fighting, amended its constitution to declare neutrality, recognized Crimea as Russian territory and Ukrainian rebel areas. pro-Russians of Donensk and Lugansk as independents.
Meanwhile, the Russian government on Monday informed its citizens, business enterprises and state departments, from federal to municipal, that when they have foreign currency payment obligations to “hostile countries” exceeding 10 million rubles per month, they can pay in rubles and not in hard currency, in order to protect the country’s foreign exchange reserves.
Russia’s foreign exchange reserves are estimated at around $285 billion. This, however, is under pressure following swinging economic sanctions imposed by Western countries and their allies.
The Kremlin issued a decree on Monday, which Russia’s TASS news agency described as a “temporary new procedure” targeting what the Russian government has listed as hostile countries.
According to Moscow, the list of countries “committing hostile actions against Russia, its businesses and its citizens” includes the United States and Canada, member countries of the European Union, the United Kingdom, Ukraine, Switzerland, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, Japan. , South Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and Taiwan.
TASS reported: “The countries and territories mentioned in the list imposed or joined the sanctions against Russia after the start of a special military operation of the Russian Armed Forces in Ukraine.”