We Won’t Tolerate Nigerians Joining Ukranian Army – Federal Govt

The Federal Government has said it will not tolerate the reported planned recruitment of Nigerians into the Ukrainian Army to fight as volunteers against Russia in the ongoing war between the two nations.

This followed reports that over 200 Nigerians have applied at the embassy of Ukraine in Abuja, where they were allegedly asked to pay $1,000 as visa charges and ticket to travel to Ukraine.

The government, in a statement issued yesterday by the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Fransica Omayuli, discouraged this development and vowed to stop it.

The statement read, “The attention of the Federal Government of Nigeria has been drawn to an alleged ongoing registration of Nigerian volunteers into the fighting force of Ukraine at the Ukrainian Embassy in Abuja.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs contacted the Embassy to verify the speculation. The Ukrainian Embassy refuted the allegation, but confirmed that a number of Nigerians had approached the Embassy indicating their willingness to fight on the side of Ukraine in its ongoing conflict with Russia.


“Furthermore, the Embassy clarified that the Ukrainian government is not admitting foreign volunteer fighters and as such dissociated itself from the claim that it is requesting $1,000 from each Nigerian volunteer for air ticket and visa.”

The statement said further that as a responsible member of the international community and consistent with her obligations under international law, Nigeria discourages the use of mercenaries anywhere in the world and will not tolerate the recruitment of Nigerians as mercenaries to fight in Ukraine or anywhere else in the world.

“The federal government will continue to engage with the Embassy of Ukraine in Nigeria and other relevant authorities to prevent this possibility,” it added.

Over 1.7m Have Fled Ukraine, Says UN


Meanwhile, the United Nations refugee agency has said more than 1.7 million people have so far fled the war in Ukraine.

It said thousands of others are streaming across the borders.

A total of 1,735,068 civilians, mostly women and children, have crossed the border into Central Europe, the UNHCR said.

Poland has received more than one million Ukrainian refugees since the conflict began on February 24. The European Union could see as many as five million Ukrainian refugees if Russia’s bombardment of Ukraine continues, the EU’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, said.


Third round of talks ends


Ukraine’s negotiator has said talks with Russia have yielded small progress on evacuation logistics, but none that significantly improves the broader situation.

The two sides will continue talks on a ceasefire, Mykhailo Podolyak said in a video statement.

Russian negotiator Vladimir Medinsky said it was too early to speak of any positive outcomes.

Road Out Of Mariupol Mined – Red Cross

The Red Cross has said that its staff, along with other civilians, were unable to leave Ukraine’s besieged port city of Mariupol because of the resumption of hostilities and the lack of a safe exit route.

Dominik Stillhart, director of operations at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), told BBC radio that the team had attempted to leave on Sunday but realised the road indicated to them was mined.

Two attempts at evacuating civilians from Mariupol failed over the weekend as both Ukrainians and Russians blamed each other for violating a previously agreed ceasefire.

Meanwhile, European Union (EU) nations have agreed to start examining membership bids submitted by Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova.

The ex-Soviet states last week rushed to file applications to join the bloc after the Kremlin launched its attack on Ukraine.

The move by the 27 member states is the first step in the bloc’s process for deciding whether to allow new members to join, which can last for years.

Relatedly, the United States (US) Secretary of State Antony Blinken has assured Lithuania and Latvia of NATO protection and American support as he made quick visits to two of three Baltic states.

In the Latvian capital, Riga, Blinken said the Baltics have “formed a democratic wall that now stands against the tide of autocracy” that Russia is pushing in Europe.


“The United States is more committed than ever to standing with you as our democracies rise to the challenge,” he said.


The leaders of Germany, Britain and the Netherlands have cautioned against abruptly banning Russian energy imports, saying there were no immediate alternative supplies.


The pushback came after the United States on Sunday said it was in “active discussions” with European nations about shutting down Russian oil imports as part of sanctions against Moscow.


“Europe has deliberately exempted energy supplies from Russia from sanctions.


“Supplying Europe with energy for heat generation, mobility, electricity supply and industry cannot be secured in any other way at the moment,” German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in a statement.


Boeing CO says it has suspended buying titanium from Russia, despite there being no sanctions yet on VSMPO-Avisma, the world’s largest producer.


Russia’s VSMPO-Avisma in a statement said it “regrets” the suspension of contracts with its long-term American partner.


Boeing said in a statement that “our inventory and diversity of titanium sources provide sufficient supply for airplane production.”


British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said the United Kingdom will pledge another 175 million pounds ($230m) in aid for Ukraine to help it deal with a growing humanitarian crisis.


The extra funding brings the UK’s overall financial support for Ukraine to about 400 million pounds ($525m), he told reporters.


At least 13 civilians have been killed in an air raid on a bread factory in the town of Makariv, on the outskirts of Kyiv, according to local emergency services.


The services said five people had been rescued from the building’s rubble, adding that about 30 people were believed to have been at the place


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