The foreign ministers discussed “specific topical issues, the efforts to counter the illegal sanctions of the West, as well as interaction on international platforms”, Belarusian state media cited Belarus’ foreign ministry as saying, as well as having “touched upon trade and economic cooperation matters and the implementation of joint projects”. One person died and several were injured by Ukrainian shelling in the region on Sunday morning, the region’s governor said.The Weeks of military manoeuvres and inspections have raised fears in Kyiv that Belarus, which acted as a staging post for Russia to launch its invasion of Ukraine in February, could be preparing to take a more active role in the conflict once again.Ukraine’s forces are holding on to the heavily contested eastern city of Bakhmut, according to Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, adding that Kyiv was ready for “all possible defence scenarios” against Moscow and its ally. In the runup to the meeting, which will be Putin’s first visit to Belarus since 2019, Lukashenko said the two leaders would discuss the “military-political situation” in the region as well as economic cooperation. There were no immediate reports of attacks and the alarm was ended about 20 minutes later. Ukraine’s atomic energy agency has accused Russia of flouting nuclear safety by sending a “kamikaze” drone over part of a nuclear power plant in Mykolaiv region just after midnight on Sunday. Russia unleashed 35 “kamikaze” drones on Ukraine in the early hours of Monday as many people slept, hitting critical infrastructure in and around Kyiv in Moscow’s third air attack on the Ukrainian capital in six days. Russia’s defence ministry said its forces had shot down four US-made HARM anti-radiation missiles over the Belgorod region, which borders Ukraine, in the space of 24 hours, the state-run TASS news agency has reported.
Putin and Lukashenko announce more joint manouevres as Kyiv warns of potential new invasion from northRussia-Ukraine war: latest updatesVladimir Putin has discussed closer military cooperation with his Belarusian counterpart, Alexander Lukashenko, during a rare visit to the country, as fears grow in Kyiv that Moscow is pushing its closest ally to join a new ground offensive against Ukraine.The meeting, which was Putin’s first visit to Belarus since 2019, came hours after Moscow launched a fresh barrage of “kamikaze drones” that damaged “key infrastructure” in and around Kyiv, according to the mayor, Vitali Klitschko.
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