Monday 7th March 2022

Starting in Europe...

The Russian army is continuing to fire artillery into cities across Ukraine, hitting civilian buildings. Civilians have been killed when trying to escape the city of Irpin. In the Southern city of Mariupol Russia agreed to allow civilians to leave through humanitarian corridors on Saturday, however these plans were abandoned after Mariupol continued to receive artillery fire. People in Mariupol have said that there electricity, communications and water supplies have been disrupted and there is a lack of food. French President Emmanuel Macron had a two-hour phone call yesterday with Russian president Vladimir Putin, in which he tried to convince Putin to allow civilians to leave cities that are being bombed.

On Friday the Russian army attacked the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear power plant, and there was a fire, which Ukraine said risked a disaster ten times worse than the Chernobyl disaster. US ambassador to the United Nations Linda Greenfield said that the world came close to its worst nuclear disaster...

“By the grace of God, the world narrowly averted a nuclear catastrophe last night...”

The Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant is now under Russian control, however it is continuing operation. In Kherson - the largest city that has been taken by the Russian army, thousands of people protested against the Russian invasion this weekend, which Russian soldiers tried to disperse by shooting their guns in the air...

There have also been some attacks in Western Ukraine. The airport in Vinnytsia was completely destroyed by Russian missiles, according to Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky. The Russian army is moving closer to the third largest city, Odesa. Indian Students have asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to evacuate them. There are hundreds of Indian students in the city of Suma in North Ukraine, which is under fire from Russian artillery.

In Russia there is a new law, which says that anyone who tells fake news about the military or the war in Ukraine, can be jailed for 15 years. The BBC and other networks have temporarily suspended work in Russia to avoid journalists being arrested. Russia has also blocked access to Facebook and Twitter. According to Russian human rights group OVD there were 5,000 more arrests of protesters this weekend in Russia, meaning that over 10,000 Russians have been arrested in anti-war protests since the invasion of Ukraine. Yesterday Pope Frances rejected Putin’s claim that this is a “military operation”, saying that it is a “war”. Yesterday president Zelensky spoke Russian in a direct message, asking Russian people to protest against the invasion of Ukraine. This weekend there were protests in cities around the world against the Russian invasion, with hundreds of thousands of people attending. Card payment companies Visa and Mastercard have said that they will suspend operations in Russia.

President Putin said this weekend that sanctions on Russia were a ‘declaration of war’. UK deputy Prime Minister Dominic Raab, said that they were not a declaration of war, and the only person who wants war, is Putin...

“We are not going to either get ourselves into a direct military conflict with Putin, either because that would be a massive escalation but also that feeds Putin’s narrative. Putin wants to say that he’s actually in a struggle with The West - he’s not. This is an illegal invasion of a neighbour who’s self-determination, democratic and territorial integrity needs to be protected. We do not want to feed Putin’s narrative.”

Over 60,000 Ukrainian men have returned to Ukraine in the last ten days to help to fight the Russian army, defence minister Oleksii Reznikov said yesterday. Almost 20,000 foreign volunteers have signed up to fight alongside Ukraine, although it is difficult to know how many have arrived. There are believed to be around 180,000 Russian soldiers in Ukraine.

The migration of Ukrainian refugees is the fastest growing refugee crisis in Europe since world war two, the United Nations said yesterday. Over 1.5 million refugees have left Ukraine in the last ten days.

Rest of the world

In Pakistan at least 56 people were killed in an attack on a mosque. Daesh, the Islamic State group, claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing in Peshawar, that targeted the Shia Muslim minority.

In Argentina a catholic bishop has been sent to jail fore paedophilia. Gustavo Zanchetta was given 4 and a half years in prison despite originally being defended by Pope Francis.

Egypt has had a female judge sit in its state council for the first time. Radwa Helmi is the first woman to sit in a top court in Egypt.

And in Ukraine, Airbnb is being used to send money to local people. Airbnb removed its services from Russia and Belarus last week, however, people have started reserving Airbnbs in Ukraine just to send money to local people. Airbnb has removed all service fees in Ukraine.

That’s your world news in 7 minutes. Go to for transcripts and more. If you find this podcast valuable then please become a supporter at 10% of what we receive goes to effective altruism charities. I’m Stephen Devincenzi. Tomorrow you will be with Juliet Martin. Have a great day.

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