For full coverage of the crisis in Ukraine, visit Flashpoint Ukraine.
The latest developments in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. All times EDT:
9:17 p.m.: Already displaced from the front-line region of Kharkiv that has been partially occupied since Russia invaded Ukraine in February, Alia Skrypka, 35, believed that Kremenchuk, more than 170 km from the nearest fighting, was safe.
But after a missile strike on a shopping mall killed at least 18 people in the central Ukrainian city on Monday, she is now considering whether she should move her two girls, Milla, 7 and Myroslava, 4, elsewhere — perhaps even abroad.
"After this, I'm not sure we are safe," she told Reuters, after helping her elder daughter to place flowers at an unofficial memorial just meters from the burned husk of the mall.
The industrial city, home to Ukraine's largest oil refinery, had been hit by several strikes, but residents said earlier attacks had not hit civilian areas.
Russia said its strike was aimed at an ammunition store. The mall is next to a factory that Ukraine says was disused and could not be described as a military target.
Russia denies intentionally targeting civilians in its "special military operation" in Ukraine which has destroyed cities, killed thousands of people and driven millions from their homes.
8:18 p.m.: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy addressed the U.N. Security Council, saying, “The U.N. Security Council today stood in silence to commemorate all Ukrainians killed by the Russian army on our land. The members of the Russian delegation looked at everyone present in the Security Council and also decided to stand up -- just so as not to look like outright murderers. But everyone knows that it is Russian terror, it is the Russian state that is killing innocent people in this war waged against the Ukrainian people.
“I called on the U.N. to use the existing mechanisms of the charter to stop Russian manipulation of the organization's structures and to set up a special tribunal to investigate the actions of the Russian occupiers on Ukrainian soil,” Zelenskyy said.
7:59 p.m.: President Vladimir Putin says Russia is trying to build relations with the Taliban and that Russia wants to see all the ethnic groups in Afghanistan take part in running the country, The Associated Press reported.
Putin's statement Tuesday came in a meeting with President Emomali Rahmon of Tajikistan during the Russian leader's first trip abroad since the beginning of the Ukraine conflict.
Tajikistan, which hosts a Russian military base, has a long and porous border with Afghanistan and is wary that Islamic radicalism could seep into the country.
“We are doing everything so that the situation in that country normalizes,” Putin said in Dushanbe, the Tajik capital, according to AP. “We are attempting to build relations with the political forces that control the situation.”
7:18 p.m.: Ukraine will start trading electricity with neighboring European countries later this week as it continues to move away from Russia’s sphere of influence, the European Network of Transmission System Operators for Electricity (ENTSO-E) said, according to The Associated Press.
The Belgian-based association, which represents dozens of transmission system operators in Europe, said the first phase of commercial exchanges is set to begin on June 30 following the synchronization of power systems in March.
Following the Russian invasion, engineers linked Ukraine to the continental grid to allow the country to decouple its power system from Russia. Moldova was also synchronized with the continental system, AP reported.
6:39 p.m.: The war in Ukraine is having an extremely negative effect on the country’s demographics, according to a recent study, the Kyiv Independent reported.
4:15 p.m.: Bulgaria said it was expelling 70 Russian diplomatic staff over espionage concerns and had set a cap on the size of Moscow's representation as tensions between two countries that were once close allies fractured over Ukraine, Reuters reported.
The move, announced by the foreign ministry and outgoing prime minister, was the largest expulsion of Russian diplomats by Sofia in recent years and more than halves the size of Moscow's diplomatic footprint in the Balkan country.
An unnamed source told Russia's TASS news agency that Moscow, which in April cut off gas to Bulgaria over its refusal to agree to a ruble payment mechanism despite its heavy dependence, would respond, Reuters reported.
2:50 p.m.: Finland's President Sauli Niinisto said on Tuesday that Turkey has agreed to support Finland and Sweden's joint membership of NATO, on the first day of the alliance's summit in the Spanish capital Madrid.
Niinisto said the breakthrough came after the three countries signed a joint memorandum "to extend their full support against threats to each other’s security."
Turkey, Sweden and Finland will prepare a joint memorandum to address Turkey's concerns over the two Nordic countries joining NATO, according to Finnish media reports.
2:30 p.m.: School #66 was the pride of Mariupol after a major renovation in 2018. But that all changed in late February 2022. VOA’s Lesia Bakalets has this story.
2:07 p.m.: The man considered to be the wealthiest oligarch in Russia, who has been photographed playing ice hockey with President Vladimir Putin, joins a growing list of those transferring — or, sailing — their prized assets to Dubai as the West tightens its massive sanctions program on Russia’s economy.
Vladimir Potanin, head of the world’s largest refined nickel and palladium producer, may not be sanctioned by the United States or Europe yet; such sanctions could roil metal markets and potentially disrupt supply chains, experts say. As the biggest shareholder in mining company Nornickel, Potanin had a personal fortune of $30.6 billion before the war on Ukraine, according to Forbes.
But like an increasing number of blacklisted Russian oligarchs, he has apparently taken the precaution of moving his $300 million superyacht to the safe haven of Dubai, in the U.S.-allied United Arab Emirates.
1:43 p.m.: Soldiers from around the world continue to join Ukraine's foreign legion, motivated by the need to help with "the most important conflict in the last 50 years," as one American volunteer put it. Experienced Western soldiers, while impressed with what their Ukrainian counterparts have done so far in resisting Russia's invasion, also say they want to help bring military practices up to NATO-level standards. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty has this story.
1:18 p.m.: NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg says the military alliance will commit to reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 for its forces at this week’s summit in Madrid, The Associated Press reported.
“NATO is determined to set the gold standard on discussing the security challenges of climate change,” Stoltenberg said Tuesday in Spain’s capital as world leaders arrived for two days of talks.
Stoltenberg says that NATO’s immediate goal will be reducing the greenhouse gas emissions of its military forces by 45% by 2030. He said climate change is “a crisis multiplier,” so it matters for security.
12:42 p.m.: The United States on Tuesday imposed sanctions on more than 100 targets and banned new imports of Russian gold, acting on commitments made by the Group of Seven leaders this week to further punish Russia over its invasion of Ukraine, Reuters reported.
The U.S. Treasury Department said it imposed sanctions on 70 entities, many of which it said are critical to Russia's defense industrial base, as well as 29 people in an effort to hinder Russia's ability to develop and deploy weapons and technology.
"Targeting Russia's defense industry will degrade (Russian President Vladimir) Putin's capabilities and further impede his war against Ukraine, which has already been plagued by poor morale, broken supply chains, and logistical failures," Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement.
12:19 p.m.: The mayor of the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, Vitali Klitschko and his brother, Wladimir, are in Madrid and have met Spain’s King Felipe VI at a NATO Public Forum debate on the eve of the NATO summit in the Spanish capital, The Associated Press reported.
The two brothers were in the audience when the king made his address to the forum Tuesday and met the monarch as he left. The king said their presence was “a very pleasant surprise” and that he had conveyed to them Spain’s “support and our deep thoughts and friendship with your nation, with your people.”
The brothers, both former heavyweight boxing champions, work together to keep Kyiv running during the ongoing war with Russia.
NATO has invited Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to the summit, but it is expected that he will appear only by video conference.
12:04 p.m.: From the beginning of Russia’s invasion, Ukraine’s capital Kyiv was one of the main targets. The city suffered missile attacks, and more than 600 civilian buildings were damaged by Russian rockets. Now, more than 300 of these residential buildings are undergoing repair work. And helping to lead in Kyiv’s recovery are a pair of famous Ukrainian brothers from the Klitschko family. VOA’s Eastern Europe bureau chief Myroslava Gongadze has this story.
11:48 a.m.: A Russian missile attack on a shopping mall in Ukraine this week has sown fear far from Ukraine's frontlines, Reuters reported Tuesday.
Already displaced from the frontline region of Kharkiv that has been partially occupied since Russia invaded Ukraine in February, Alia Skrypka, 35, believed that Kremenchuk, more than 170 km from the nearest fighting, was safe.
But after a missile strike on a shopping mall killed at least 18 people in the central Ukrainian city on Monday, she is now considering whether she should move her two girls, Milla, 7 and Myroslava, 4, elsewhere - and perhaps even abroad.
"After this, I'm not sure we are safe," she said, after helping her elder daughter to place flowers at an unofficial memorial just metres from the burned husk of the mall.
11:15 a.m.: Britain must bolster investment in defense to tackle threats not only from Russia but from China and other countries, British defense minister Ben Wallace said on Tuesday, Reuters reported.
His comments were echoed by the new head of Britain's army, who warned the government that President Vladimir Putin's Russia would probably prove an even greater threat to European security after the war in Ukraine than it was before.
Britain has been a vocal supporter of Ukraine since Russia invaded on Feb. 24 and Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who is facing criticism at home on a range of issues, has traveled twice to Kyiv to meet Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
10:41 a.m.: Italian Premier Mario Draghi says the Indonesian presidency of the Group of 20 nations has ruled out in-person participation by Russian President Vladimir Putin at the November meeting of the group in Bali, The Associated Press reported.
The Nov. 15-16 summit risked awkward diplomatic encounters if Putin were to have come. The Kremlin had said earlier that Putin intended to go.
But Draghi, whose country held the G-20 presidency before handing it off to Indonesia, said Tuesday the G-7 had rallied to support Indonesian President Joko Widodo to organize a successful summit.
Asked about the Kremlin’s announcement that Putin would participate, Draghi said: “President Widodo excludes it. He was categorical: (Putin) is not coming. What might happen — I don’t know what will happen but what might happen is perhaps a remote intervention.”
10:26 a.m.: The city of Slovyansk in Ukraine's Donetsk region is preparing for a major offensive by Russian forces. Ukraine's territorial-defense units are defending Slovyansk and nearby villages. Local residents have been urged to evacuate, but many refuse to leave the city despite Russian bombardments and increasingly difficult living conditions.
10:02 a.m.: NATO hopefuls Finland and Sweden voiced optimism on Tuesday that Turkey might lift its veto over their stalled bid to join the military alliance at a summit in Madrid, where U.S. President Joe Biden is set to meet his Turkish counterpart, Reuters reported.
The White House confirmed Biden will meet Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan during the summit that starts later on Tuesday and runs until Thursday, and two NATO diplomats said they expected Washington to seek to break the impasse.
Turkey’s unexpected objections to the two Nordic countries’ membership bid, which if successful would be the biggest shift in European security in decades, threatens to overshadow a summit striving for unity as Russia wages war in Ukraine.
9:33 a.m.: NATO spokesperson Oana Lungescu on Twitter Tuesday summarized the agenda of the NATO Summit in Madrid this week, and released a more comprehensive statement setting out goals and objectives for the 3-day meeting.
9:24 a.m.: NATO’s chief says Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has sparked a “fundamental shift” in the alliance’s defense policy, and NATO members will have to invest more in military spending in what is now a more unstable world, The Associated Press reported.
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg spoke as the alliance’s leaders began gathering Tuesday in Madrid for a summit that will set the course of the alliance for the coming years.
Stoltenberg said the meeting would chart a blueprint for the alliance “in a more dangerous and unpredictable word.” Top of the agenda is strengthening defenses against Russia and supporting Ukraine in its fight against Moscow’s invasion.
Stoltenberg said “we hope to make progress” at the gathering in breaking a logjam over applications by Sweden and Finland to join the alliance. Turkey is blocking the move and says the Nordic pair must change their stance on Kurdish rebel groups that Turkey considers terrorists.
The three countries’ leaders are due to meet in Madrid, alongside Stoltenberg, later Tuesday.
9:17 a.m.: NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg on Tuesday gave remarks in Madrid, Spain, at the NATO Public Forum.
8:49 a.m.: Russia has added U.S. President Joe Biden's wife, Jill, and daughter, Ashley, to its list of Americans under sanctions in retaliation for Washington's moves against Russia over its war in Ukraine, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported.
The Foreign Ministry in Moscow said in a statement on Tuesday that 23 other academics and U.S. officials, including Republican Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell, and Senators Charles Grassley, Kirsten Gillebrand, Susan Collins, Ben Sass, and Martin Heinrich, were also added to the list.
"As a response to the ever-expanding U.S. sanctions against Russian political and public figures, 25 American citizens are included in the 'stop list' from among the senators responsible for the formation of a Russophobic narrative, participants in the so-called McFaul-Yermak group, which develops recommendations on anti-Russian restrictions, as well as members of the family of President Joe Biden," the statement said.
Those people on the list are banned from entering Russian territory.
8:41 a.m.: VOA’s White House Correspondent Anita Powell reports from Telfs, Austria, on the close of the G7 Summit and looks ahead to the NATO summit in Madrid.
8:33 a.m.: President Tayyip Erdogan held firm on his stance towards Finland and Sweden's NATO bids on Tuesday, Reuters reported. Erdogan said Turkey wanted results not words to address its concerns, adding he will also push U.S. President Joe Biden on a "stalled" F-16 fighter jet purchase.
Breaking with decades of a policy of neutrality, Finland and Sweden applied for NATO membership in light of Russia's invasion of Ukraine. But they have faced opposition from Turkey over what it says is the Nordic countries' support for militants it views as terrorists, and arms embargoes on Ankara.
8:14 a.m.: Russia on Tuesday denied hitting a shopping mall in the Ukrainian city of Kremenchuk with missiles, saying that it had struck a nearby depot of U.S. and European arms triggering an explosion which ignited a fire in the mall, Reuters reported.
Ukraine said at least 18 people were killed on Monday by an intentional Russian missile strike against the shopping center in Kremenchuk. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said more than 1,000 people were inside when the missiles struck.
Russia's defense ministry rejected Ukraine's account, saying it had hit a legitimate military target in the city, and that the shopping center was not in use.
Reuters was unable to independently verify the Russian account, or Zelenskyy's claim that Russia intentionally hit the shopping center to target civilians.
8:00 a.m.: In addition to thousands of deaths and the destruction of crucial infrastructure, another, more invisible, crisis tied to Russia’s invasion could haunt Ukraine for years: environmental damage. From shelled chemical plants to forests scorched by missiles, the consequences will be felt not only by Ukraine’s ecosystems but also by its people, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported.
7:39 a.m.: A spokesperson for the Russian embassy in Jakarta told Reuters on Tuesday that Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is planning to attend the Group of 20, or G-20, foreign ministers’ meeting in Bali next week. The meeting, hosted by current G-20 chair Indonesia takes place from July 7-8.
7:33 a.m.: Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has shocked NATO back to first principles, The Associated Press reported. Seven decades after it was founded, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization is meeting in Madrid this week with an urgent need to reassert its original mission: preventing Russian aggression against Western allies.
7:21 a.m.: French President Emmanuel Macron said that Russia’s strike this week on a Ukrainian shopping mall was a “war crime” and that France would keep supporting Ukraine for as long as necessary, Reuters reported.
“Russia cannot and must not win this war,” Macron said at the G7 summit in Germany.
Firefighters and soldiers searched on Tuesday for survivors in the rubble of a Ukrainian shopping mall, where authorities said 36 people were still missing after a Russian missile strike that had killed at least 18.
6:56 a.m.: Kurds in Sweden's large diaspora are worried they will become a pawn in the negotiations over Stockholm's ambition to join NATO if the West makes concessions to win Turkish support, Reuters reported.
Sweden, along with Finland, applied for NATO membership in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, with their bids warmly welcomed as a "historic moment" by alliance chiefs.
But they have faced opposition from Turkey, which has been angered by what it says is their support for Kurdish militants and arms controls on Ankara over a 2019 incursion into Syria.
6:49 a.m.: Leaders of the world’s wealthiest democracies struck a united stance to support Ukraine for “as long as it takes” as Russia’s invasion grinds on, and said they would explore far-reaching steps to cap Kremlin income from oil sales that are financing the war, The Associated Press reported. The final statement Tuesday from the Group of Seven summit in Germany underlined their intent to impose “severe and immediate economic costs” on Russia.
6:35 a.m.: Ukrainian officials on Tuesday revised the casualty figure upward in the aftermath of a missile strike on a busy shopping mall in the city of Kremenchuk on Monday, according to the Kyiv Independent.
“Most of the bodies found at the scene of the explosion haven't been identified yet due to their severe burns, Minister of Internal Affairs Denis Monastyrskyi reported. He added that the relatives of missing people will need to take DNA tests to identify the bodies,” according to the Kyiv Independent.
6:30 a.m.: Negotiations aimed at overcoming Turkey’s objection to Sweden’s bid to join NATO have made progress and a breakthrough could come at the alliance’s current summit in Madrid, Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde said on Tuesday.
“We are prepared for the eventuality that something positive could happen today, but it might also take longer,” Linde told daily Svenska Dagbladet (SvD). “In that case, we will stay patient and continue discussions even after the summit.”
6:15 a.m.: The Kremlin said Tuesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin is planning to hold a meeting with Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi during a visit to Ashgabat, the capital of Turkmenistan, on Wednesday, Reuters reported.
Putin is making his first known trip abroad since the start of what Moscow calls a “special military operation” in Ukraine. He is expected to meet Tajik President Imomali Rakhmon in Dushanbe later on Tuesday.
Speaking to reporters on a conference call, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Putin would return to Moscow on Wednesday evening.
6 a.m.: The Associated Press interviews Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez ahead of the NATO summit this week in Madrid.
5:45 a.m.: U.S. President Joe Biden will meet Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan at this week’s NATO summit in Madrid where the alliance will discuss the fallout of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the White House said in a statement on Tuesday.
Leaders at the Madrid summit will also take “historic decisions to strengthen the alliance's collective defense and security,” the statement said.
5:30 a.m.: The U.K.’s Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said Tuesday she spoke to Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal and reiterated her country’s commitment and “solidarity with the Ukrainian people and we will work with them to support their reconstruction plans.”
5:15 a.m.: Russia on Tuesday expanded its U.S. ‘stop-list,’ including in it the wife and daughter of President Joe Biden as well as other prominent figures.
The step was taken “as a response to the ever-expanding U.S. sanctions against Russian political and public figures,” Russia’s foreign ministry said in a statement.
5 a.m.: G-7 leaders are working on finding a way of letting Ukraine export its grain, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Tuesday.
“We’re working on it, we’re all working on it,” he said at the start of a five-way meeting with France’s Emmanuel Macron, Italy’s Mario Draghi, Germany’s Olaf Scholz and the U.S.'s Joe Biden, when asked if they were going to get the grain out of Ukraine.
Ukraine’s bulk grain exports are being hindered by a Russian blockade of its Black Sea ports, forcing exporters to use less efficient land routes, Reuters reported.
4:45 a.m.: The British army’s Chief of the General Staff Patrick Sanders said on Tuesday that Russia will likely be an even greater threat to European security after the war in Ukraine than it was before, Reuters reported.
“While Russia’s conventional capability will be much reduced for a time at least, (Russian President Vladimir) Putin’s declared intent recently to restore the lands of historic Russia makes any respite temporary and the threat will become even more acute,” Sanders said in a speech.
“We don't know how the war in Ukraine will end. But in most scenarios Russia will be an even greater threat to European security after Ukraine than it was before.”
Sanders said the army needed to be able to mobilize faster to deter the threat from Russia.
4:15 a.m.: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Tuesday he stressed the need for a “powerful missile defense system for Ukraine to prevent Russian terrorist attacks” in talks with NATO’s leader.
The phone call with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg came ahead of the start of a summit of NATO leaders in Madrid where Ukraine is expected to be among the major topics of discussion.
“At our NATO summit we will step up support for our close partner Ukraine, now and for the longer term,” Stoltenberg tweeted after speaking with Zelenskyy. “NATO allies stand with you.”
Stoltenberg said Monday that the Western military alliance is declaring a sevenfold increase in the number of its troops on standby alert — from 40,000 to more than 300,000.
3:30 a.m.: After winning their opening matches at Wimbledon, Ukrainian tennis players Anhelina Kalinina and Lesia Tsurenko have advanced to the next round of the competition.
But both said it’s tough to stay focused on the game when your family’s home is under attack, according to The Associated Press. The two plan to discuss what they can do to bring more recognition to the war.
3:15 a.m.: The French tire maker Michelin said Tuesday that it intends to transfer its activities in Russia to local management by the end of the year, Reuters reported.
“Michelin now confirms that it is technically impossible to resume production, due in particular to supply issues, amid a context of general uncertainty,” the company said in a statement.
It added that the new entity would operate through an independent structure.
The company in April said its balance sheet exposure to Russia and Ukraine still amounted to roughly 200 million euros ($211.78 million), adding that it was its goal to stop raw material imports from Russia by June.
3 a.m.: Chris Philp, U.K.’s minister for the digital economy said Tuesday that Russia’s airstrike at a busy mall in Kremenchuk, in the region of Poltava, southeast of Kyiv fits a pattern in Russia’s approach to the war. Philp said the attack is not a “a one-off act” and that there is “no end to Putin’s barbarity,” speaking on Sky News TV program.
2:45 a.m.: G-7 leaders have agreed to study potential price caps on Russian oil and gas in a bid to limit Moscow’s ability to fund its invasion of Ukraine, G-7 officials said on Tuesday, according to Reuters.
The European Union will explore with international partners ways to curb energy prices, including the feasibility of introducing temporary import price caps, a G-7 document seen by Reuters said. The official said this meant both oil and gas.
2:30 a.m.: Giving aid to Ukraine and pain to Vladimir Putin – those are the measures leaders of the world’s wealthiest liberal democracies zeroed in on Monday as they listened to Ukraine’s president plea for more help. VOA White House correspondent Anita Powell reports from Telfs, Austria.
2 a.m.: The U.K. defense ministry said Tuesday that Russian forces “continue to consolidate their positions on higher ground in the city of Lyschansak, after falling back from Sieverodonetsk,” despite fielding core elements of six different armies.
“Ukrainian forces continue to disrupt Russian command and control with successful strikes deep behind Russian lines,” the report said, adding that “Russian armed forces are increasingly hollowed out. They currently accept a level of degraded combat effectiveness, which is probably unsustainable in the long term.”
1:30 a.m.: Firefighters and soldiers searched on Tuesday for survivors in the rubble of a shopping mall in central Ukraine after a Russian missile strike killed at least 18 people in an attack condemned by the United Nations and the West, Reuters reported.
Family members of the missing lined up at a hotel across the street where rescue workers set up a base after Monday's strike on the busy mall in Kremenchuk, in the region of Poltava, southeast of Kyiv.
More than 1,000 people were inside when two Russian missiles slammed into the mall, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said. At least 18 people were killed and 25 hospitalized, while about 36 were missing, said Dmytro Lunin, governor of Poltava.
Leaders of the Group of Seven, or G-7, major democracies, at a summit in Germany, said the attack was “abominable.”
“Russian President Putin and those responsible will be held to account,” they said in a joint statement.
12:30 a.m.: Prominent Russian opposition politician Ilya Yashin was detained in Moscow, a lawyer for opposition figures and a Russian journalist said on their social media accounts, Reuters reported.
Irina Babloyan, a journalist and a host at the now defunct Ekho Moskvy radio station, said Yashin was detained while the two were walking together.
Lawyer Vadim Prokhorov, who has represented many Russian opposition figures, also said Yashin was in police custody for the alleged administrative violation of disobeying a police officer, according to Reuters.
12:01 a.m.: VOA’s national security correspondent Jeff Seldin tweeted that the Department of Defense Inspector General released a statement saying it would evaluate U.S. intelligence’s support for Ukraine “to determine the extent to which the DoD developed, planned, and executed cros-domain intelligence sharing with European partners in support of Ukraine.”
Some information in this report came from Reuters and The Associated Press.