Germany 're-arming like the Nazis', says Kremlin – The Telegraph

Russia has accused Germany of "remilitarising" in the same way as Adolf Hitler’s Nazis did ahead of the Second World War.
Germany today voted to approve a deal to release 100 billion euros (£85 billion) to build up its army after Moscow’s offensive in Ukraine.
"We take that as another confirmation that Berlin is on the path to a new re-militarisation," said Maria Zakharova, the Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman.
"How could this end? Alas, this is well known from history."
It appeared to be a reference to Nazi Germany’s re-armament programme in the 1930s.
Thanks for following our Ukraine liveblog.
Here are five key updates from today:
Liz Truss, the Foreign Secretary, has reaffirmed Britain’s support for Ukraine, warning Russia’s “unjustified and illegal” invasion threatened world peace and economic stability. 
In a statement marking the 100th day of the war, Ms Truss said:
“Putin’s invasion has brought death and destruction on a scale not seen in Europe since World War Two.
“This war has huge ramifications for global peace, prosperity and food security. It matters to us all.”
Macky Sall, Senegal’s president, said Vladimir Putin had told him he was ready to enable the export of Ukrainian grain to ease a global food crisis that is hitting Africa especially hard.
“President #Putin has expressed to us his willingness to facilitate the export of Ukrainian cereals,” Mr Sall wrote on Twitter after meeting Putin in his role as chairman of the African Union.
Russia was also ready to ensure the export of its own wheat and fertiliser, Mr Sall said following the talks in the Russian Black Sea resort of Sochi.
Mr Sall did not say if Putin had attached any conditions to his offer.
In the 100 days since Putin’s barbaric invasion, Ukrainians have fought back with supreme courage and dignity.

Our support for Ukraine will never waver until Ukrainians enjoy the peace and freedom that their heroism deserves.
German lawmakers voted for a constitutional amendment to create a 100 billion-euro (£85 billion) fund beefing up its military defences in the face of an emboldened Russia.
Deputies of the Bundestag lower house approved the measure 567 votes to 96 with 20 abstentions after the centre-left-led government and the conservative opposition reached a deal on Sunday.
The watershed move answers years of criticism from close allies that Berlin was failing to achieve NATO’s target of spending two percent of GDP on defence.
The Bundesrat upper house must still approve the measure.
“This is the moment in which Germany says we are there when Europe needs us,” foreign minister Annalena Baerbock of the Green party told MPs.
Russian opposition politician and former prime minister Mikhail Kasyanov, who has been critical of Moscow’s military campaign in Ukraine, said he had left Russia temporarily but was hoping to return.
Kasyanov, who served as president Vladimir Putin’s first prime minister from 2000 to 2004, told AFP in written messages that he was not currently in Russia.
“I hope not for long,” the 64-year-old said.
He declined to provide any other details or say where he was.
The European Union has blacklisted Russian military commanders who it said led troops involved in atrocities in Ukraine, describing them as the “butchers” of Bucha and Mariupol.
Among the 65 people named in the latest round of sanctions was Azatbek Omurbekov, who the EU said led Russian troops as they “killed, raped and tortured civilians in Bucha,” earning him the nickname “Butcher of Bucha”.
Also named was Mikhail Mizintsev, a general the EU said oversaw the siege and bombardment of Mariupol that killed thousands. Russian strikes on the Azov Sea port city hit a maternity hospital and a theatre, killing hundreds of children, the EU said, dubbing him “the Butcher of Mariupol”.
Moscow has announced a travel ban on 41 Canadian citizens, including several members of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, in retaliation for “anti-Russian” sanctions imposed on Moscow over Ukraine.
Russia’s foreign ministry said “entry into Russia is closed for (these) citizens of Canada, including heads of organisations supporting ultra-nationalist forces in Ukraine, as well as top military officials”.
The list includes several Canadian deputy defence ministers and members of Ukraine-linked organisations.
Russia has already blacklisted more than 600 Canadian citizens and nearly 1,000 US citizens.
🇺🇦 Today marks 100 days of conflict in Ukraine.

How did we come to this and what’s next?

To dissect this historic & horrific war, @djknowles22 speaks to The @Telegraph‘s @RolandOliphant & @Nat_Vasilyeva

Ukrainian police have received around 50 complaints and opened 16 criminal investigations into allegations of sexual violence committed by Russian soldiers against civilians, Ukraine’s deputy interior minister said.
Kyiv, its international allies and the United Nations human rights office have been investigating potential war crimes, including sexual violence, in Ukraine since Russia launched its invasion in February.
Moscow denies committing war crimes or targeting civilians during a war that has killed thousands and forced millions of people, mostly women and children, to flee abroad.
President Zelensky has appeared with members of his government to mark the 100th day of the war in Ukraine. 
The heartening address echoed the words Mr Zelenksy used in a video posted on February 25, the day after the Russian invasion commenced, which showed him and other officials in the streets of Kyiv, dispelling rumours that he had fled the city. 
After acknowledging the officials standing alongside him, the embattled leader said:
“Our team is much larger. The Ukrainian Armed Forces are here. Most importantly, our people are here.
“We have defended Ukraine for 100 days already. Victory will be ours. Glory to Ukraine. Glory to heroes.”
Toymaker Lego’s Russian reseller said on Friday it was temporarily “freezing” some of its stores in Russia after sanctions imposed on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine hit its supply network.
“Supplies of Lego in Russia have been temporarily suspended, and we continue to operate only on local stocks. In connection with this, we are temporarily freezing the work of some stores,” the local reseller said in an email to clients seen by Reuters.
Lego said in March that it was pausing shipments to Russia given the severe disruption caused by the war in Ukraine. The company has 81 stores in Russia, which are operated by Inventive Retail Group.
The EU formally adopted a ban on most Russian oil imports on Friday, hitting Moscow with its toughest sanctions over the war on Ukraine after weeks of wrangling with Hungary.
The sanctions – the sixth wave imposed by the 27-nation bloc since the Kremlin launched the invasion in February – include cutting Russia’s biggest bank Sberbank from the global SWIFT messaging system, the text published in the EU’s official journal said.
President Vladimir Putin’s alleged girlfriend, former gymnast Alina Kabaeva, was also added to an assets freeze and visa ban blacklist, along with Russian army personnel suspected of war crimes in the Ukrainian town of Bucha.
Ukraine’s embattled eastern region of Donetsk will not fall quickly to Russia’s assault, but it needs the world to supply more weapons to keep the offensive at bay, its governor told Reuters.
Russian troops are poised just 15 km (nine miles) north of Sloviansk, the second biggest Ukrainian-controlled city in Donetsk region, said Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko. 
Seizing the regions of Donetsk and neighbouring Luhansk is a key Russian military objective.
While Russia is close to capturing full control of Luhansk region, just under 50 per cent of Donetsk region still remains in Ukrainian hands, Mr Kyrylenko said.
One hundred days after Vladimir Putin’s forces invaded Ukraine, the war has reshaped the world in ways few could have predicted, writes Justin Huggler.
It has redrawn the geopolitical map. The US has forged a global coalition in support of Ukraine, while Russia is more isolated than at any time in recent history.
China appears weakened and diminished. Nato is resurgent. Old Western alliances are restored. 
Read the piece in full here.
Russia has accused Germany of throwing European security into imbalance by “remilitarising”, as Berlin moves to boost its military spending in response to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.
In comments published in German newspapers this week, chancellor Olaf Scholz said Berlin would soon have the largest conventional army of NATO’s European members, pending the approval of a 100 billion-euro (£85 billion) special military fund.
“We perceive the statement of the German Chancellor (Olaf Scholz) as yet another confirmation that Berlin has set a course for an accelerated remilitarisation of the country. How could this end? Alas, this is well known from history,” Maria Zakharova, a spokeswoman for the Russian foreign ministry said.
Olaf Scholz, the German chancellor, welcomed Ruslan Stefanchuk, the Ukrainian parliament speaker for a meeting at the chancellery in Berlin today. 
It comes as relations between their two countries have been strained by Kyiv’s refusal to extend an invitation to Germany’s head of state, president Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who it accused of being too sympathetic to Russia during his time as foreign minister.
While Mr Shultz has so far declined to visit the Ukrainian capital, Friedrich Merz, leader of the German conservative opposition, made the trip to meet with president Volodymyr Zelensky and other Ukrainian officials on Tuesday.
Kyiv’s ambassador to Ankara said that Turkey is among the countries that is buying grain that Russia stole from Ukraine.
Ambassador Vasyl Bodnar also told reporters he has sought help from Turkish authorities and Interpol to investigate who is involved in the shipments of grains transiting Turkish waters. 
He warned that companies doing business with Russia would be barred from partaking in redevelopment projects in Ukraine.
Turkey has maintained ties to both Ukraine and Russia throughout the war. Though it has condemned the invasion, Ankara has stopped short of imposing sanctions against Russia, one of its most important trade partners. 
Russia’s foreign ministry said it was summoning the heads of US media outlets in Moscow to a meeting next Monday to notify them of tough measures in response to US restrictions against Russian media.
“If the work of the Russian media – operators and journalists – is not normalised in the United States, the most stringent measures will inevitably follow,” said Maria Zakharova, a ministry spokeswoman.
Russia has accused Western countries of imposing unfair restrictions on its media abroad, including bans on some state-backed news outlets. 
Lawmakers passed a bill last month giving prosecutors powers to shut foreign media bureaus in Moscow if a Western country has been “unfriendly” to Russian media.
More talks are needed on allowing exports from Russia as part of an accord to resume Ukrainian food exports, Amin Awad, the United Nations crisis coordinator for Ukraine said amid the looming global food crisis, which has been exacerbated by the war. 
President Vladimir Putin will today host the head of the African Union, the Senegalese president Macky Sall, to give him an “exhaustive” explanation of what is really happening with Ukrainian grain, the Kremlin said.
Cereal prices in Africa, the world’s poorest continent, have surged because of the slump in exports from Ukraine.
Germany has strongly condemned Putin’s attempt to create a narrative that the West is responsible for causing famine in Africa, a spokesperson from their foreign ministry said.
While Alexander Lukashenko, the Belarussian leader,  said that he was ready to discuss possible transit of Ukraine’s grain via his country, according to the local newspaper “Belarus Today”. 
Ukraine’s defence minister said he believed the Kremlin was trying to move the war into a “protracted phase” by building layered defences in occupied regions in the south of the country.
“The Kremlin is trying to move the war into a protracted phase,” Mr Reznikov told the GLOBSEC 2022 Bratislava Forum by video link.
“Instead of advancing, the Russian armies are constructing layered defences” in southern occupied regions, primarily Kherson, he said.
Despite this, Mr Reznikov said he hopes Ukraine can repel Russian forces from the occupied territories this year. 
The European Union has formally approved an embargo on Russian oil and other sanctions targeting major banks and broadcasters over Moscow’s war on Ukraine.
Around 90 per cent of Russian oil imports into the EU will be hit by the end of the year, largely thanks to Germany and Poland promising to stop deliveries from the northern leg of the Druzhba pipeline, the world’s longest, by the end of the year.
The package was agreed after some wrangling with Hungary over the inclusion of patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, who was eventually removed from the EU blacklist at Budapest’s request. 
Slovakia said it would be hardest hit by the new raft of sanctions on Russian oil and it expected solidarity from Brussels to mitigate the impact.
Today marks 100 days since Putin declared war on Ukraine and Russian tanks stormed over the border.
Since the invasion, Telegraph correspondent’s have witnessed first-hand the atrocities Russian soldiers have committed and the devastation which has followed.
They recount their experiences here: 
The United Nations said there would be no victor from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as the conflict entered its 100th day and Moscow’s forces pressed deeper into the eastern Donbas region.
“This war has and will have no winner. Rather, we have witnessed for 100 days what is lost: lives, homes, jobs and prospects,” Amin Awad, assistant secretary-general and United Nations crisis coordinator for Ukraine, said in a statement.
It comes as president Volodymyr Zelensky said that Ukraine is losing hundreds of troops each day in the fiercely contested eastern Ukraine.
Britain’s defence ministry said that on the 100th day of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine that Moscow failed to achieve its initial objectives to seize Kyiv and Ukrainian centres of government but was achieving tactical success in the Donbas.
“Measured against Russia’s original plan, none of the strategic objectives have been achieved,” Britain’s Ministry of Defence said in a Twitter update.
But it said it was achieving tactical success in the eastern region of the Donbas and was controlling more than 90pc of Luhansk Oblast.
Russia is close to capturing all of Luhansk, one of two Ukrainian regions that make up the swathe of land known as the Donbas.
Ukraine has marked 100 days since Russia’s invasion, with battles raging across the east of the country, where Moscow’s forces are tightening their grip on the Donbas region.
The sombre milestone comes as Ukraine announced Moscow was now in control of a fifth of Ukrainian territory, including Crimea and parts of Donbas seized in 2014.
President Vladimir Putin’s troops are vying to capture eastern Ukraine, prompting warnings the war could drag on.
Some of the fiercest fighting is now centred on Severodonetsk in the Donbas region, 80 per cent of which the Russians have seized, but Ukrainian forces are putting up stiff resistance.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his address on Thursday that Ukrainian troops had achieved some success in the battle for the industrial hub, which is in the Lugansk region.
“But it is still too early. It is the toughest area at the moment,” he said.
After 100 days of war, Ukraine is fighting for time, trying to hold out against overwhelming Russian fire on its eastern front long enough for Western weapons to arrive and give it a badly needed edge.
With casualties mounting and some delays in Western capitals with deliveries, Ukrainian officials fear the relief may not come quickly enough.
A White House pledge this week of $700 million of weapons including advanced rocket systems has been greeted with a touch of scepticism by some watching their homes pummelled and cities overrun.
“It’s already running late,” said Serhiy Gaidai, the governor of Ukraine’s eastern Luhansk region whose home town Severodonetsk has been partially destroyed during a Russian advance in recent days.
“Our Western partners are helping us, but the quantity of weapons and ammunition that they are providing are not enough,” he said in an interview.
Thousands have been killed and more than six million people forced to flee the country since Russia invaded.
Volodymr Zelensky has thanked the United States for agreeing to send advanced rocket systems to Ukraine.
“These weapons really can save the lives of our people and defend our land,” the Ukrainian President said.
According to Mr Zelensky, Ukraine is expecting deliveries of modern combat systems from other countries and noted that Sweden announced on Thursday it was sending a new package of military assistance.
The US agreed to supply Ukraine with advanced rocket launch systems to try to turn the tide of the war in the eastern Donbas region.
The US had held off sending such advanced medium-range missile systems to Ukraine for fear of provoking a broader war with Vladimir Putin.
US secretary of state Antony Blinken said: “It’s not a question of deterring Russia. It’s about providing to Ukrainians what they need to repel Russia.”
Russian forces occupied large swaths of the Sumy region after Moscow invaded Ukraine in February, before Ukrainian forces retook control of the area in April.
Volodymyr Zelensky has said Russian forces were mobilising people from areas of the Donbas that were already under their control and sending them into battle in the first line of attack – with Russian troops coming in behind them.
“The longer the war goes on, the more vile, shameful and cynical things Russia is forever inscribing in its history,” the Ukrainian President said.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said fighting is brutal in the eastern Donbas but there has been “some progress” in the city of Severodonetsk, where Russian forces have been tightening their grip.
He said it was too early to give specifics.
“It’s the toughest there right now. As in the cities and communities nearby – Lysychansk, Bakhmut and others,” Mr Zekensky said late on Thursday in his nightly video address to the nation.
“There are many cities where the Russian attack is powerful.”
The United States and its allies are vowing to hold Russia accountable for crimes committed by its forces since they invaded Ukraine on February 24.
US Undersecretary of State Uzra Zeya has told a UN Security Council meeting on strengthening accountability and justice for serious violations of international law that in nearly 100 days the world has seen Russian forces bomb maternity hospitals, train stations, apartment buildings and homes and even kill civilians cycling down the street.
Ms Zeya said the US was working with its allies to support a broad range of international investigations into atrocities in Ukraine.
Ireland’s Attorney General Paul Gallagher welcomed efforts over the past three months to support calls for justice in Ukraine, saying Ireland was one of 41 countries that quickly referred the situation in the country to the International Criminal Court.
Mr Gallagher said the ICC had deployed a team of 42 investigators, forensic experts and support staff to investigate Russian crimes and support Ukrainian efforts.
Russia’s UN Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia accused Western nations of “hypocrisy” for suddenly seeking international criminal justice over what Moscow calls its “special military operation” in Ukraine.
Boris Johnson, who travelled by train into Kyiv for his visit with Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukrainian president, hailed the railway workers as “iron people” keeping the country going. The vast railway network has proved invaluable from a military standpoint
Britain will send sophisticated medium-range rocket systems to Ukraine, as it joined the United States and Germany in equipping the nation with advanced weapons for shooting down aircraft
Hunched over their smartphones in bunkers, guns slung over their shoulders, Ukraine’s frontline soldiers gazed intently at football players darting across the tiny screens in their country’s nail-biting World Cup qualifier with Scotland
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