- Russia says EU candidate status for Ukraine, Moldova will have negative consequences
- IAEA worried about staff at Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant
- Ukrainian army leaving battered city for fortified positions
Russia-Ukraine Crisis: After weeks of ferocious fighting, Ukrainian forces have begun retreating from a besieged city in the country’s east to move to stronger positions, a regional official said Friday, the four-month mark in Russia’s invasion.
The UN nuclear watchdog said it is increasingly concerned about the welfare of Ukrainian staff at the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in southeastern Ukraine, Europe’s largest.
The International Atomic Energy Agency has for months said that Zaporizhzhia, where Ukrainian staff are operating the plant under the order of Russian troops, poses a safety risk and that it wants to send a mission there.
Meanwhile, European Union leaders on Thursday granted Ukraine the coveted status of an official candidate to join their 27-nation club, a bold geopolitical step hailed by Kyiv and the EU itself as a “historic moment”.
Although it could take Ukraine more than a decade to eventually join the bloc, the decision to officially accept it as a candidate is a symbol of the EU’s intention to reach deep into the former Soviet Union.