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Live Reporting

Edited by Jessica Murphy

All times stated are UK

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  1. Continue to follow our live coverage

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  2. IAEA in contact with Ukraine over Zaporizhzhia plant

    The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has said it is in contact with Ukrainian authorities over the reports of shelling at the the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant.

    A spokesperson for the plant has also taken to social media asking that Russian forces "stop the heavy weapons fire".

    “There is a real threat of nuclear danger in the biggest atomic energy station in Europe,” Andriy Tuz said in a video on Telegram, according to the Associated Press.

    Tuz said the plant is under direct attack from Russian shelling and firefighters are not able to go near the fire that had broken out.

    He added the reactor that is on fire was under renovation and is not currently operational, but it contains nuclear fuel.

    Zaporizhzhia reportedly accounts for some 25% of the country's power.

  3. Alarms raised over attack on nuclear plant

    Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says Russian troops are "firing from all sides" at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, the largest plant in Europe.

    As we just reported, local officials say that a fire has broken out in the plant because of these attacks.

    "Russians must IMMEDIATELY cease the fire, allow firefighters, establish a security zone!" he wrote on Twitter.

    Laura Rockwood, the director of the Open Nuclear Network non-profit, earlier told the BBC's Radio 4 that the war could have an impact on Ukraine's electricity grid, which depends on nuclear power.

    She said military activity around a plant poses two direct risks to nuclear instillations - potential damage to a plant's infrastructure and harm to its personnel, or much more serious damage that affects a plant's operational abilities that could cause a meltdown.

  4. Europe's largest nuclear plant is on fire, say local officials

    The Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is the largest in Europe

    A fire has reportedly broken out at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, the largest in Europe.

    It appears to have been caused by "continuous enemy shelling of [the plant's] buildings and units", according to Mayor Dmytro Orlov of nearby Enerhodar.

    Orlov had previously reported intense fighting between Ukrainian and Russian forces on the outskirts of his city, which is in the southeast.

    Russian troops had tried to enter the city in tanks and seize the plant, but residents and workers were seen congregating around the plant and its surrounding roads on Wednesday.

    Ukraine has four active nuclear plants including Zaporizhzhia.

    It also deals with nuclear waste at sites like Chernobyl, now under Russian control.

    The International Atomic Energy Agency said earlier today that it is consulting with Ukraine "and others with a view to provide maximum possible assistance to the country as it seeks to maintain nuclear safety and security in the current difficult circumstances".

  5. UK satellite firm suspends use of Russian rockets

    OneWeb satellites were due to be launched from the Baikonur spaceport

    OneWeb, the satellite company part-owned by the UK government, says it is suspending all launches from the Russian-operated Baikonur spaceport.

    The firm had hoped to send up 36 spacecraft on a Soyuz rocket from the Kazakhstan cosmodrome, but the mission has become embroiled in the fall-out over the invasion of Ukraine.

    Russia had sought a guarantee that armed forces would not use the satellites. It also wanted the UK government to divest itself of OneWeb shares, an ultimatum rejected by Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng.

    Read more here.

  6. Warnings issued over nuclear plant safety

    Enerhodar's nuclear cooling towers, pictured before the war
    Image caption: Enerhodar's nuclear cooling towers, pictured before the war

    Wladimir Klitschko, the champion boxer and brother of the Kyiv mayor, has said that Ukraine's nuclear plants are being threatened by the Russian invasion, warning of a potential repeat of the 1986 Chernobyl disaster.

    Earlier, we reported fierce shelling in Enerhodar, in south-eastern Ukraine, the home of one of Europe's largest nuclear plants.

    The local mayor has already warned that there is no water supply or electricity in the town, due to the onslaught.

    Klitschko tweeted today: "Ukraine has 4 nuclear power plants and Russian army is shooting rockets and bombing right next to it. Don’t look away, STOP Russian invasion NOW!!!"

    The International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Rafael Grossi in a statement today called on all the military forces operating around Enerhodar to refrain from violence near the plant.

    On Wednesday, he said the country’s nuclear power plants "must be able to continue operating without any safety or security threats. Any accident caused as a result of the military conflict could have extremely serious consequences for people and the environment, in Ukraine and beyond".

    Russian forces seized control of the shuttered Chernobyl nuclear power plant about a week ago. Ukrainian officials reported radiation levels had been "exceeded" in a number of places in the area at the time, but Russia said that was not the case.

  7. US TV producer arrested for sanctions violations in London

    The producer is accused of working with sanctioned oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev (pictured)
    Image caption: The producer is accused of working with sanctioned oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev (pictured)

    A former TV producer for Fox News was arrested in London last month at the request of the US, and American officials are now seeking to extradite him.

    American John "Jack" Hanik, 71, is accused of violating sanctions imposed in 2014 after Russia's invasion of Crimea. Prosecutors say he worked with a sanctioned Russian businessman to set up pro-Kremlin TV channels in Europe.

    Hanik is accused of working with oligarch Konstantin Malofeyev, who the US Justice Department says "is closely tied to Russian aggression in Ukraine".

    Malofeyev, the US says, was "one of the main sources of financing for Russians promoting separatism in Crimea," and has provided material and financial assistance to separatists in Donetsk.

    "The defendant Hanick knowingly chose to help Malofeyev spread his destabilising messages by establishing, or attempting to establish, TV networks in Russia, Bulgaria, and Greece, in violation of those sanctions,” the US statement adds.

  8. Canada grounds charter plane from Russia

    Yellowknife is a city in the Northwest Territories of Canada
    Image caption: Yellowknife is a city in the Northwest Territories of Canada

    Canadian transport officials have grounded a charter plane carrying two Russian citizens who appeared to be headed to the Arctic to conduct an expedition.

    "A charter aircraft that carried Russian foreign nationals has been held at the Yellowknife airport," Canada's transport minister tweeted on Thursday.

    "We will continue to hold Russia accountable for its invasion of Ukraine."

    The plane will be held until officials complete an assessment to determine if the flight violated the new ban on Russian planes in Canada's airspace.

    It's unclear what is happening to the Russians passengers aboard the plane.

  9. Ukrainians in the US to receive 'temporary protected status'

    Ukrainian nationals present in the US as of this past Tuesday will be allowed to remain in the country under a special non-immigrant category.

    US Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas announced the move on Thursday evening, saying the government would extend the 'Temporary Protected Status' (TPS) to Ukrainians.

    Homeland Security typically designates nationalities under TPS due to ongoing armed conflict, natural disasters, epidemics or "other extraordinary and temporary conditions" that prevent people from safely returning to their home countries.

    Nationals from 12 countries are already protected under TPS.

    They include Burma, Haiti, Syria and Yemen.

    View more on twitter
  10. UK defence secretary: 'Russia's invasion is not going to plan'

    The UK's Defence Secretary Ben Wallace says that Russia's military strategy is not going to plan.

    He told the BBC's Jonathan Beale that logistics recovered from armoured vehicles show the Russian army is behind schedule - and that plans to appeal to Ukrainians as "liberators" have failed.

    Meanwhile, President Putin insisted Russia's invasion is "going to plan" in a televised address on Thursday.

    Video content

    Video caption: Ben Wallace says Russia's plan not going as they wanted
  11. Belarusian troops ordered into Ukraine, says Ukraine army

    The Ukrainian military says it believes Belarusian troops were ordered to cross the border into Ukraine to fight today.

    In a Facebook post, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine wrote that "the command of the military unit received an order to cross the border with Ukraine".

    Ukraine say Russia has been using Belarusian territory to fire missiles at Ukrainian cities.

  12. 'It's become a war against civilians'

    Damien McGuinness

    BBC News, Berlin

    Residents of Odesa fill construction bags with sand to defend the city
    Image caption: Residents of Odesa fill construction bags with sand to defend the city

    As Russian troops move along the coast, there are fears for Ukraine’s biggest port, the magnificent city of Odesa.

    Russian naval ships are reportedly approaching. Sandbags are piled up in front of the Baroque opera house, and armed soldiers patrol leafy 19th-century boulevards.

    Until recently many hoped that Odesa would escape the worst of the conflict.

    On Friday when I spoke to my friend Natalia Polupanova, a teacher and grandmother, she told me she was staying in Odesa, hopeful talks would stop the war.

    But when I called her again today she had fled to Moldova with her daughter-in-law and three grandchildren. The youngest is nine-months old. The men stayed behind.

    “It’s become a war against civilians", Natalia said.They couldn’t sleep for the sound of sirens and rocket fire.

    “We didn’t want to leave, it’s hard to leave your home,” Natalia said, but the children couldn’t stop crying. “They kept saying: we don’t want to die, we want to live.”

    Map showing areas of southern Ukraine under Russian control
  13. Saudi Arabia offers to mediate between Moscow and Kyiv

    Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman
    Image caption: Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman

    Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has told the leaders of Russia and Ukraine he is "ready to make efforts to mediate between all parties".

    In separate phone conversations with Vladimir Putin and Volodymyr Zelensky, he expressed support for "a political solution" to their conflict.

    He told Zelensky that the kingdom will extend the visas of Ukrainian tourists and residents that are due to expire by three more months.

    According to Saudi Arabian media, it was Putin who called the Crown Prince, who then "clarified the kingdom's stated position" on the war in Ukraine.

    The Kremlin, in its own readout of the call, said both leaders discussed energy concerns and "will continue to coordinate their approaches" on oil production, as key partners in the OPEC+ alliance.

    "Taking into account the anti-Russian sanctions imposed by a number of Western countries, Vladimir Putin emphasised the inadmissibility of politicising the issues of global energy supply," it said.

  14. Don't trust Putin, warns ex-Ukrainian president

    Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has cast doubt over the viability of peace talks with Russia.

    Speaking to BBC Newsnight, he says it is impossible to trust Russia's President Putin to keep his word.

    Watch what he has to say here:

    Video content

    Video caption: Poroshenko became Ukraine's president in 2014, and lost to Volodymyr Zelensky in 2019

    Watch the full interview on Newsnight on BBC Two at 22:30 GMT (UK only).

  15. Russia's invasion of Ukraine: Day eight

    Good evening to those of you just joining us, here's a round-up of today's main events on day eight of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

    • The port city of Mariupol has been relentlessly shelled as Russian forces try to surround and capture the city - a key strategic target for Russia in southern Ukraine
    • Russia took control of another city in southern Ukraine, Kherson. It is the first major population centre to be captured by Russia in more than a week of fighting
    • On the diplomatic front, Russian and Ukrainian negotiators met at an undisclosed location and reportedly agreed on the need to organise humanitarian corridors
    • Russian President Vladimir Putin told his Security Council meeting that his so-called "special military operation" in Ukraine was "on track", and insisted that Russians and Ukrainians were one people
    • The UK extended its sanctions regime against two more oligarchs close to the Kremlin
    • And on the sea, an Estonian-owned cargo ship sunk following an explosion near the Ukrainian Black Sea port of Odesa. Ukrainian media say the Russian navy had been using the Helt as a shield to hide from Ukrainian weaponry

    You can read more on today's developments here.

    Map showing situation in Ukraine
  16. Putin's KGB friends and former judo partner among those targeted by new US sanctions

    Duncan Kennedy

    BBC News Correspondent

    Vladimir Putin

    President Biden was pretty blunt in announcing the new package of sanctions on Russia.

    He said its oligarchs were lining their pockets with the Russian people’s money while Ukraine and its people were hiding in subways to protect themselves from Russian missiles.

    Biden added that sanctions against President Putin and those around him were already having a “profound impact”.

    The additional list of eight names of those to be sanctioned by the US is interesting.

    They include former friends of Putin during his time in the KGB in East Germany and one of his former judo training partners.

    They also include the Kremlin press secretary who, the Americans say, is a "top purveyor of Putin’s propaganda".

    And we’re told a lot of these Russians have houses and other major assets in the US.

    Earlier on Thursday, the White House also told us that President Biden had no plans to talk to, or meet, President Putin to discuss ways of halting the invasion.

  17. Russia's credit rating approaches junk territory

    A man in Russia looks at a currency exchange screen
    Image caption: The Russian rouble has hit record lows in recent days

    Ratings agency S&P has cut Russia's credit rating from "BB+" to "CCC-".

    "The downgrade follows the imposition of measures that we believe will likely substantially increase the risk of default," the agency said on Thursday.

    It comes less than a week after S&P's last downgrade of Russian debt.

    On Wednesday, Moody’s Investors Service and Fitch Ratings also downgraded Russia's rating by several notches. Both indicated further downgrades were likely.

    It means Russian debt is now considered sub-investment grade, or in "junk" territory, by all three of the world's major ratings companies.

    The Russian rouble has hit record lows in the wake of heavy sanctions.

  18. Superstar Russian soprano dropped by Met Opera

    Nada Tawfik

    North America correspondent, BBC News

    Anna Netrebko

    The war in Ukraine has put international arts organisations in a difficult position, and many have chosen to take a principled stance.

    The Metropolitan Opera, based in New York, just announced that their superstar Russian soprano, Anna Netrebko, will no longer perform this season or next after she failed to comply with their demand that she repudiates her support for Vladimir Putin.

    General manager Peter Gelb said the loss of Netrebko – one of the best singers in Met Opera history – was a great artistic loss.

    But, he said: "With Putin killing innocent victims in Ukraine, there was no way forward."

    The soprano will be replaced by a Ukrainian, Liudmyla Monastyrska, who made her debut in the opera house in 2012.

    Increasingly, it looks like Russia’s isolation internationally will be felt for some time: a Met official said it would be hard to imagine a scenario where Netrebko would be able to return to the opera house.

  19. New White House sanctions on 19 Russian oligarchs

    Billionaire Alisher Usmanov will be among those sanctioned by the US
    Image caption: Billionaire Alisher Usmanov will be among those sanctioned by the US

    The Biden administration has announced a fresh round of sanctions against Russian oligarchs.

    Eight wealthy elites will be cut off by the US financial system and see their assets frozen, including billionaire Alisher Usmanov, Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov and oil executive Nikolai Tokarev.

    In addition, 19 oligarchs and 47 of their family members and closest associates will be banned from traveling to America.

    The White House also said it will sanction seven Russian entities and 26 individuals for their role in spreading "false narratives that advance Russian strategic objectives and falsely justify the Kremlin’s activities".

    President Joe Biden noted on Thursday that sanctions already in place have "had a profound impact".

    Now, he said, Western allies are headed toward "the strongest unified economic impact campaign on Putin in all history".

  20. Putin cannot kill our soul, ex-Ukrainian president says

    Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko tells the BBC the "whole nation is beating Putin", as he urges his fellow citizens to never give up.

    "He can switch off the lights, he can switch off the supply of the warmth, but he cannot kill Ukrainian soul," he says.

    Poroshenko was Ukraine's president for five years, until Volodymyr Zelensky won a landslide in the 2019 election.

    Watch what he's got to say below.

    Video content

    Video caption: Poroshenko: Putin can switch off the lights, but he cannot kill Ukrainian soul

    Watch the full interview on Newsnight on BBC Two at 22:30 GMT (UK only).