A 21-Year-Old Soldier Is Accused Of Killing An Unarmed 62-Year-Old Civilian Man In Ukraine’s Sumy Region

A 21-Year-Old Soldier Is Accused Of Killing An Unarmed 62-Year-Old Civilian Man In Ukraine’s Sumy Region

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1 min agoTreasury secretary: US will likely block Russian debt payments starting next weekFrom CNN’s Matt Egan

US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen speaks to journalists on the sidelines of a meeting of finance ministers and central bankers from the Group of Seven industrialised nations (G7) on May 18 in Koenigswinter near Bonn, western Germany. (Ina Fassbender/AFP/Getty Images)US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Wednesday signaled US officials will likely end a carve-out in Western sanctions that has allowed Russia to continue making payments on its debt and avoid a default.

Speaking at a press conference in Germany, Yellen said it is “reasonably likely” to expect the license will be allowed to expire on May 25. 

“There has not been a final decision on that. But I think it’s unlikely it would continue,” Yellen said. 

Such a move would effectively block Russia from paying US bondholders, raising the risk of a default. Russia has not defaulted on its foreign debt since the Bolshevik revolution more than a century ago. 

US sanctions introduced after Russia invaded Ukraine ban transactions with Russia’s central bank, finance ministry and national wealth fund. However, the Treasury Department issued a license that allows for transactions related to debt payments.

“When we first imposed sanctions on Russia, we created an exemption that would allow a period of time for an orderly transition to take place and for investors to be able to sell securities,” Yellen said. “And the expectation was that it was time-limited.”Yellen signaled she is not concerned about the potential spillover caused by ending the license.

“Russia is not able right now to borrow in global financial markets. It has no access to capital markets,” Yellen said. “If Russia is unable to find a legal way to make these payments and they technically default on their debt, I don’t think that really represents a significant change in Russia’s situation. They’re already cut off from global capital markets and that would continue.”

1 min agoTurkish official holds calls with Swedish and Finnish counterparts on NATO membership applications From Isil Sariyuce in Istanbul

Ibrahim Kalin, the spokesperson for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, held phone calls with his counterparts from Sweden and Finland as well as Germany, the US and the UK to discuss NATO membership applications of Sweden and Finland, among other topics.

“In the context of Sweden and Finland’s membership applications to NATO, the expectation that concrete steps will be taken to address Turkey’s national security concerns was communicated. It was underlined that if Turkey’s expectations were not met, the progress of the process would not be possible,” according to a readout of the meeting.

“During the meetings, it was also emphasized that it is unacceptable to allow the terrorist organization PKK/PYD/YPG and FETO members to exist in NATO members and other countries. It was stated that there should be no discrimination between terrorist organizations and that all forms of terrorism should be fought in a spirit of unity and solidarity,” the readout added.

Erdogan has accused the two countries of harboring members of the separatist militant Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, and supporters of US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom Turkey accuses of masterminding a 2016 coup attempt, which Gulen denies. The PKK has been designated a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union. Erdogan also said Sweden did not extradite 30 people whom Turkey sees linked to terrorism. 

According to the readout, the reversal of defense export bans and of sanctions against Turkey were also addressed.

Earlier on Wednesday, Erdogan told his party’s members of parliament in Ankara that he expects NATO member countries to “understand” Turkey’s security issues. 

19 min agoUkrainians target Russian tank 8 miles from Ukraine-Russia border, videos showFrom CNN’s Paul P. Murphy 

Ukrainian forces in the northeastern Kharkiv region targeted a Russian tank, with the tank firing back as well, according to new videos circulating on social media. 

CNN has geolocated and verified the authenticity of the videos. It’s unclear when the firefight with the tank happened, but it took place near the village of Nove, just 8 miles (about 12 kilometers) south of the Ukraine-Russia border. 

The three videos show a Russian tank near a network of trenches dug on the western shoulder of Highway 105. Troops are seen in the trenches, but it’s unclear whether they are Russian or Ukrainian. 

The Russian tank was seen on fire, spinning around and then firing. 

Although it’s unclear how the tank caught on fire, the second video gives some indication of what may have started it. In the video, the tank was seen heading north back toward the border and Russian-occupied territory, as well as toward a Ukrainian soldier equipped with a shoulder-fired missile. 

The tank fired repeatedly in the direction where the soldier was last seen.

In a third video, a shoulder fired-missile was seen almost hitting the tank. Suddenly, the tank was seen firing and then crashing into a line of trees on the side of the road.

26 min agoUS defense secretary says if Sweden joins NATO, it will make alliance “better at defending ourselves”From CNN’s Ellie Kaufman

Swedish Defense Minister Peter Hultqvist, left, and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin stand during an enhanced honor cordon ceremony upon his arrival at the Pentagon today in Washington. (Alex Brandon/AP)If Sweden joins NATO, the country will make the alliance “better at defending ourselves,” US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said during opening remarks ahead of a bilateral meeting with Swedish Defense Minister Peter Hultqvist at the Pentagon on Wednesday.

“Your capabilities are modern, relevant and significant, and your addition to the alliance will make us all better at defending ourselves. And of course, that’s especially important at this crucial time,” Austin said, as the war in Ukraine continues.

“The United States strongly supports Sweden’s application for NATO membership,” Austin added.

Austin thanked Sweden for its help in supporting Ukraine through the past two-and-a-half months of the war. 

“Sweden has joined the United States and our allies and partners in rushing urgently needed security assistance and humanitarian aid to the brave people of Ukraine,” Austin said. “Your leadership has helped bring renewed resolve and resolve to the Swedish defense and security establishment.” Sweden has decided to formally apply to NATO for membership this week, along with Finland.

Hultqvist said Russia’s war in Ukraine poses a “long-term threat to European security,” and called it a “time where the democracies of Europe and North America must stand together against Russia’s naked aggression.”

While the US and Sweden already work together militarily, Hultqvist said that “things have changed” because of Russia’s invasion.

“We’ve done a lot together to make interoperability to exercise together and to develop the relationship between our armed forces,” Hultqvist said. “From our point of view, we’ve seen it as something that has given stability to our part of Europe, but the war in Ukraine is a reality and things have changed.”

Hultqvist called Sweden’s decision to apply for NATO membership a “manifestation of our commitment to transatlantic security and transatlantic cooperation.”

“In tying our security even more closely to the security of the United States and others, we are exercising our right to make our own choices in providing for our security,” Hultqvist added.

US President Joe Biden on Thursday is set to welcome the Prime Minister of Sweden and the President o

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A 21-year-old soldier is accused of killing an unarmed 62-year-old civilian man in Ukraine’s Sumy region

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