Putin Likens Himself To Legendary Warring Russian Monarch

Putin Likens Himself To Legendary Warring Russian Monarch

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10 hr 18 min agoPutin likens himself to Peter the Great, suggests Russia is justified in invading UkraineFrom CNN’s Jonny Hallam, Mariya Knight and Irene Nasser

Russian President Vladimir Putin tours the Peter the Great: Birth of the Empire multimedia exhibition in the Russia – My History historic park at VDNKh on June 9. Ivan Yesin, chair of the Russia – My History Association of Historic Parks, left, and Alexander Myasnikov, chief editor of the project, explain the exhibits. (President of Russia)Russian President Vladimir Putin compared himself favorably to Peter the Great, a Russian monarch from the late 17th century, using the likening to justify Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. 

During a visit Thursday to an exhibition dedicated to the first Russian Emperor, Putin attempted to liken Peter the Great’s conquest of Sweden in the 18th century to his own modern day military invasion of Ukraine. 

In his comments, Putin argued that Peter the Great was not conquering, but rather fighting over territory that rightfully belonged to Russia. 

He went on to draw a parallel to today’s war in Ukraine, suggesting Russia’s recent military actions — where his troops have destroyed Ukrainian cities, and killed thousands of innocent men, women and children — are justified, because Ukraine is not a legitimate sovereign nation, but in fact Russian territory.

“Why did he [Peter the Great] go there?” Putin asked, “He took back and fortified. And it looks like our fate is to “take back and fortify” too, if we are going to assume that these basic values form the basis of our existence then we will succeed in the solution of the tasks that lie ahead,” Putin said.  

Putin continued, adding that European countries didn’t recognize St. Petersburg as Russian at first, equating it to the current situation in the Russian-occupied Ukrainian territories, including Crimea, that the US and European allies don’t acknowledge as Russian. 

10 hr 22 min agoUkraine is “holding on” to key frontline cities in Donbas, says ZelenskyFrom CNN’s Mariya Knight

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky speaks from his office in Kyiv, Ukraine, on June 9. (President of Ukraine)Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said the situation in key frontline cities in the Donbas region is the same “without significant changes.”

“Severodonetsk, Lysychansk, and other cities in Donbas, which the occupiers now consider key targets, are holding on,” He said in a nightly address on Thursday.

“We have a certain positive in the Zaporizhzhia region, where we manage to thwart the plans of the occupiers. We are gradually moving forward in the Kharkiv region, liberating our land. We are keeping defense in the Mykolaiv direction.”

10 hr 25 min agoUkraine imposes sanctions on Putin and high-ranking Russian officialsFrom CNN’s Olga Voitovych and Jonny Hallam

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting in Moscow, Russia, on April 26. (Kremlin Press Service/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday signed a decree imposing personal sanctions against Russian President Vladimir Putin, according to a presidential decree.

Zelensky also announced sanctions targeting Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin and his deputies, all ministers, and Secretary of the Security Council of Russia Nikolai Patrushev.

The newly introduced restrictions include blocking assets, banning entry to Ukraine, and the cancellation or suspension of licenses and permits, according to the decree. The sanctions are being imposed indefinitely.

12 hr 16 min agoUkrainian officials report dozens of civilians killed in Russian shellingFrom CNN’s Mariya Knight

Valentyn Reznichenko, head of Ukraine’s Dnipropetrovsk region military administration, says the city of Kryvyi Rih, located in the central part of the country, is now under constant fire from Russian forces.

“The communities of Zelenodolsk and Shyrokiv suffer the most. Unfortunately, six people died there — 179 houses, two schools, a kindergarten and a hospital were destroyed or damaged,” Reznichenko said.Reznichenko said villages and towns in Kryvyi Rih are “littered with cluster munitions due to shelling” and there is a problem with gas, electricity and water supply.

In Kharkiv: Five people were killed and 14 were injured in Russian attacks, according to Oleh Syniehubov, the head of Khakiv’s regional military administration.

“Today the enemy attacked Kharkiv region, in particular settlements in the northern and northeastern directions,” Syniehubov said, adding that attacks hit residential buildings in Zolochiv.

“Five houses were destroyed. The enemy also struck at Chuhuiv district today,’’ Syniehubov said Thursday in a live question and answer broadcast on Ukrainian national television.

Syniehubov said Ukraine’s armed forces “hold their positions in the northern and northeastern directions.”

Terror on civilians: When asked why the Russian military is shelling civilian infrastructure, even though there are no visible confrontations between Russian and Ukrainian armies in the Kharkiv region at the moment, Syniehubov replied that the Russian forces “concentrated their attention on the terror of the civilian population.” 

12 hr 17 min agoFierce fighting continues in critical city of Severodonetsk, Ukrainian officials sayFrom CNN’s Jonny Hallam

A damaged building is pictured in Lysychansk as black smoke and dirt rise from the nearby city of Severodonetsk during battle between Russian and Ukrainian troops in the eastern Ukraine region of Donbas, on Thursday. (Aris Messinis/AFP/Getty Images)Ukrainian forces said late Thursday that the battle for the city of Severodonetsk continues to rage.

“The situation is consistently difficult. Our defenders are holding the line of defense, leveling the line of defense,” Serhiy Hayday,

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