Austrian chancellor confronts Putin over Ukraine war crimes | Ukraine

Austria’s chancellor, Karl Nehammer, has said he advised Vladimir Putin that “all individuals responsible” for war crimes ought to be brought to justice and warned that western sanctions would intensify as long as individuals stored dying in Ukraine.

Soon after becoming the very first western leader to maintain deal with-to-confront talks with the Russian president considering the fact that the invasion of Ukraine, Nehammer stated his journey to Moscow was not “a check out of friendship” and that the two experienced experienced a “direct, open up and hard” conversation.

“I described the major war crimes in Bucha and other spots and stressed that all people liable have to be introduced to justice,” Nehammer claimed in a assertion, immediately after a 75-minute conference that Vienna explained as “tough and direct”.

In the conference, Nehammer raised Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s readiness for in-person talks with the Russian president, but Putin gave “no reply whatsoever”, disregarding the supply, an Austrian formal told the Guardian.

Instead, Putin talked about the “Istanbul track” negotiations, which have failed to deliver any development so much.

“Putin looks to be massively caught up in the ‘logic of war’ and acts accordingly,” the Austrian official explained.

Russian media reported that the meeting, which took place at Putin’s formal Novo-Ogaryovo residence just outdoors Moscow, was guiding closed doorways at Austria’s ask for.

Speaking in advance of the assembly commenced, Putin’s spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, explained the two would focus on “the problem all-around Ukraine” but declined to give even more specifics. Peskov mentioned he could not exclude that gas would be mentioned, as this was “very, incredibly related for the Austrian side”, in accordance to Russia’s Interfax news agency.

The assembly arrived as EU international ministers reviewed focusing on Russian oil in the upcoming round of sanctions, whilst Joe Biden held talks with Narendra Modi, in which the US president was expected to press India’s leader not to increase imports of Russian crude.

Hrs earlier, Austria’s overseas minister, Alexander Schallenberg, mentioned somebody necessary to notify Putin the truth of the matter.

“It makes a variation to be deal with to face and inform him what the actuality is: that this president has de facto shed the war morally,” Schallenberg claimed.

“It should be in his personal fascination that another person tells him the fact. I feel it is important and we owe it to ourselves if we want to help save human life.”

Nehammer reported Zelenskiy, whom he fulfilled on Saturday, experienced been educated of his Moscow excursion, as had the EU leaders Ursula von der Leyen and Charles Michel, the German chancellor, Olaf Scholz, and Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Austria, which is not a member of Nato, is contacting for humanitarian corridors, a ceasefire and the comprehensive investigation of war crimes.

Lithuania’s foreign minister, Gabrielius Landsbergis, sounded sceptical about further talks with Putin, after a sequence of superior-profile visits, in the direct-up to the invasion, by EU leaders failed to prevent the Russian leader from launching his assault.

He mentioned: “I have observed a great deal of exertion by a lot of leaders, by Emmanuel Macron, to test to see irrespective of whether they can communicate to the guy. I personally have no purpose to believe that he is ‘talkable’.”

Speaking to South Korean lawmakers by means of video url on Monday, Zelenskiy said “tens of thousands” of folks experienced in all probability been killed in Mariupol. No unbiased verification of the dying toll in the besieged south-japanese metropolis is achievable, but if a determine of this magnitude is confirmed it would be by significantly the best demise toll in any Ukrainian city or town considering the fact that the war commenced.

Forces defending the besieged port city stated their ammunition was operating out. “Today will probably be the past battle,” the 36th Maritime Brigade of the Ukrainian armed forces wrote on social media. “It’s death for some of us and captivity for the rest.”

In a speech on Sunday, Zelenskiy explained he experienced talked about with Scholz how to improve sanctions in opposition to Russia, adding: “I am happy to notice that the German posture has not too long ago changed in favour of Ukraine. I contemplate it totally sensible.”

Russia explained on Monday that it experienced destroyed air defence units in Ukraine above the weekend, in what appeared to be a renewed thrust to achieve air superiority and just take out weapons Kyiv has described as crucial, just before a broad new offensive in the east.

Ukraine map: latest developments

Russia’s overseas minister, Sergei Lavrov, explained there would be no pause in navy action before the subsequent spherical of peace talks with Ukraine.

In an job interview on condition Tv, Lavrov accused Kyiv of presenting Moscow with an “unacceptable” draft offer that deviated from points they had agreed in the talks.

Lavrov also explained latest moves by the EU to improve army help for Ukraine as a “very severe U-turn”, when declaring the bloc was under the regulate of the US.

Kyiv reported Lavrov’s remarks were a tactic to divert awareness away from war crimes accusations.

In Luxembourg, Germany’s foreign minister, Annalena Baerbock, reported there were being “massive indications of war crimes”, introducing that although “the courts will have to decide”, it was “central to secure all evidence”.

EU ministers achieved Karim Khan, chief prosector of the intercontinental criminal courtroom in The Hague, and Iryna Venediktova, Ukraine’s main prosector, who is tasked with overseeing approximately 2,000 situations of war crimes committed by Russian occupying forces.

The EU overseas plan chief, Josep Borrell, told reporters later on Monday that “nothing is off the desk, together with sanctions on oil and gas”, although stressing that crude was worthy of substantially more to the Russian condition.

The EU paid 4 periods additional for Russian oil than gasoline in 2021, Borrell explained, so it is “very considerably critical to begin [sanctions] with the oil, which is a major bill and much easier [for the EU] to replace”.

The previous Spanish overseas minister also accused Russia of “provoking hunger in the world” by “sowing bombs on Ukraine’s fields”, blockading Ukrainian ships laden with wheat and destroying grain stores.

While EU ministers again condemned atrocities in Ukraine, it remains unclear how rapidly the bloc will go in cutting imports of Russian crude. The EU is banning Russian coal from August, but Germany, joined by Austria, opposes an fast oil embargo. Hungary’s recently re-elected prime minister, Viktor Orbán, said very last 7 days that extending sanctions to oil and gas was “a red line”.

Ireland’s international minister, Simon Coveney, verified that the European Commission, which is responsible for the sanctions proposals, was “now working on guaranteeing that oil is portion of the subsequent sanctions package”.

“The European Union is investing hundreds of thousands and thousands of euros on importing oil from Russia, that is unquestionably contributing to financing this war. We need to slice off that financing,” Coveney mentioned. “The sooner that can transpire the superior.”

The Swedish overseas minister, Ann Linde, stated: “I imagine we may make development when it arrives to oil. We are constantly establishing our positions and a lot more nations are comprehension how critical this is.”

The bloc, which imports 27% of its oil from Russia, is probably to argue about the phaseout period of time. Germany has pledged to section out Russian coal and oil by the stop of the calendar year, but stated ending dependence on Russian gasoline would just take until finally at the very least 2024.

Referring to these plans, Baerbock reported: “We need a joint, coordinated approach to completely stage out fossil fuels, to be able to withdraw as a European Union.”

The US, which has been pressing Berlin to sever Russian strength ties, is expected to make the similar argument to India afterwards on Monday. India has not imposed sanctions on Russia.

Getting benefit of very low prices, India has acquired 13m barrels of Russian crude oil considering that the invasion of Ukraine started, when compared with 16m barrels in all of 2021, according to Reuters.

Biden has accused India of being the only “somewhat shaky” place on Ukraine in the Quad group of nations, which features Japan and Australia.

“President Biden will continue on our close consultations on the effects of Russia’s brutal war in opposition to Ukraine and mitigating its destabilizing impression on global food offer and commodity markets,” the White House explained in a assertion.

As western sanctions keep on to chunk, a Kremlin spokesperson claimed there had been no goal grounds for a Russian financial debt default and that this kind of an result would arise only if engineered by other people.