(Bloomberg) -- Ukraine downed a Russian Su-25 military fighter jet near Avdiivka in the eastern region of Donetsk, Ukrayinska Pravda reported, citing state border service spokesman Andriy Demchenko. There was no comment from Russia’s defense ministry. A fierce battle for control contined near Avdiivka on Saturday, with Russian forces making no confirmed territorial gains. Kremlin forces are said to have sustained heavy losses in offensive.
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Andriy Yermak, a top aide to Ukraine’s president, met during this weekend’s national security advisers’ summit in Malta with Roberta Metsola, president of the European Parliament, to discuss Ukraine’s progress on fulfilling seven European Commission recommendations needed to kick off EU accession talks this year. The need to strengthen sanctions against Russia and explore mechanisms for using frozen Russian assets was also emphasized, according to a post on President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s website. A Ukrainian initiative to hold a Global Peace Summit at the heads-of-state level was discussed but nothing was finalized.
A top ally of President Vladimir Putin warned that Moscow will retaliate in kind if the European Union makes use of its frozen Russian central bank reserves. “Such a decision will require a mirror response from the Russian federation,” Vyacheslav Volodin, speaker of the lower house of parliament, said on Telegram. He added that far more assets from “unfriendly countries” would be confiscated than Russia’s frozen reserves.
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