Russia will develop its military and nuclear potential, says Vladimir Putin

Vladimir Putin promised on Wednesday to give the Russian armed forces all the necessary means, in particular human and financial, for their military campaign in Ukraine, where he assured that Moscow would achieve all its objectives. Find the developments of December 21 on the conflict in Ukraine.

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  • 7:01 p.m.: President Zelensky arrives in the United States

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has landed in the United States, his first international trip since Russia invaded his country on February 24, the White House announced, where the leader will be received by Joe Biden.

>> Volodymyr Zelensky at the White House for a historic visit

  • 5:59 p.m .: Washington announces to provide Ukraine with the Patriot defense system

The United States will provide Ukraine with its most sophisticated anti-aircraft defense system, the Patriot, the head of American diplomacy announced as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky prepared to land in Washington.

>> To read: What will change the delivery of American Patriot missiles

  • 2:07 p.m .: the strength of the Russian army will increase to 1.5 million soldiers

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said on Wednesday that he considered it “necessary” to increase the number of Russian army personnel to 1.5 million and to raise the age limit for military service, during a meeting in the presence of President Vladimir Putin, who said he “agreed” with these proposals. A presidential decree dating from August already planned to increase the number of combat personnel to 1.15 million from 1er January.

  • 1:26 p.m .: Vladimir Putin announces that Moscow will continue to develop its military potential, including nuclear

The Russian president said on Wednesday that his country would continue to develop its military potential, including the “combat readiness” of its nuclear forces. Vladimir Putin promised to give the armed forces all the financial means they need for the military campaign in Ukraine, where, according to him, Moscow will achieve all its goals.

The head of the Kremlin also announced the entry into service “at the beginning of January” of the new Russian hypersonic cruise missiles Zircon as well as the creation of two naval bases for “support ships, emergency rescue services and units of ship repair” in the two occupied Ukrainian cities of Berdyansk and Mariupol.

  • 10:34 a.m .: Kremlin does not expect a change in kyiv’s position on peace negotiations

On the sidelines of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s visit to Washington, the Kremlin said it did not expect kyiv to change its position on the peace talks.

For the Kremlin, new deliveries of American weapons to Ukraine will “aggravate” the conflict. “All this certainly leads to an escalation of the conflict and does not bode well for Ukraine,” said Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov, referring to new arms deliveries to kyiv.

  • 9:59 am: Xi Jinping and Medvedev discuss Ukraine conflict in Beijing

Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev visited Beijing for a surprise diplomatic visit and met with Chinese President Xi Jinping. During this meeting, they would have discussed the Ukrainian conflict.

Dmitry Medvedev, now deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council, said he and Xi Jinping discussed the “limitless” strategic partnership of the two countries, as well as Ukraine. He did not provide further details.

“We discussed cooperation between the two ruling parties in China and Russia, (…) bilateral cooperation within the framework of our strategic partnership, especially in the field of economy and industrial production. We also discussed international issues – including, of course, the conflict in Ukraine,” Dmitry Medvedev said. “The interviews were useful,” he added.

  • 7:11 am: Belarus restricts access to certain border areas with Ukraine and Russia

Belarus issued a decision on Wednesday temporarily restricting access to parts of the Gomel region (oblast), bordering Ukraine and Russia.

The government said on its website that “entry, temporary stay and movement near the border in Loyev, Brahine and Khoiniki raïons in Gomel oblast are temporarily restricted”. These restrictions do not apply to officials, workers and residents of these areas, the government added, without specifying how long they would remain in place.

Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Belarus on Monday, stoking fears in Ukraine that he intends to pressure his ally into joining a new offensive.

  • 7:04 am: US to deliver Patriot anti-aircraft system to Ukraine

On the occasion of Volodymyr Zelensky’s trip to Washington, Joe Biden will announce “significant” new aid to Ukraine, which will include, according to a senior American official, a battery of Patriot missiles, advanced anti-aircraft defense equipment.

  • 7:02 a.m.: Zelensky at the White House and Congress on Wednesday

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who has not left his country since the invasion by Russia on February 24, will be received on Wednesday at the White House by Joe Biden before addressing the United States Congress during a visit to already historic. This visit underlines that the United States will support Ukraine “as long as necessary”, said Karine Jean-Pierre, spokesperson for the American executive, in a press release formalizing the event.

During this trip with incredible security constraints and which will only last “a few short hours”, the Ukrainian head of state will first have a meeting with the American president and his teams at the White House, before a press conference, detailed a senior official of the American executive during an interview with journalists. Then the Ukrainian president will address the full Congress, that is to say the House of Representatives and the Senate.

  • 6:30 a.m .: Vladimir Putin draws conclusions from the past year

The possible displacement of Volodymyr Zelensky in Washington would coincide with a major military meeting around Vladimir Putin: the Russian president wants to draw the conclusions of the past year on Wednesday and set the objectives of his army for 2023.

With AFP

Russia will develop its military and nuclear potential, says Vladimir Putin