Olaf Scholz calls for strong arms production in Europe
This Monday, Chancellor Olaf Scholz gave the symbolic groundbreaking ceremony for a new factory for arms manufacturer Rheinmetall on the country’s largest defense industrial complex, in Untelüss, in northern Germany. On this occasion, he called on Europeans to turn towards mass production of military equipment, favoring grouped and long-term orders.
The new unit must produce 155 millimeter artillery ammunition from 2025, gradually aiming for a capacity of 200,000 shells per year. According to the Chancellor, this is a “signal” to Europeans called to strengthen the continent’s defense industrial base.
We must move away from manufacturing and toward large-scale arms production
, he declared on the Rheinmetall website. This is an “urgent necessity. Because as harsh as this reality is, we do not live in times of peace,” the Chancellor stressed. Russia’s war in Ukraine and Vladimir Putin’s “imperial ambitions” pose “a major threat.” In this situation, “those who want peace must succeed in deterring potential aggressors,” believes the Chancellor.
kyiv denounces “deliberate” destruction of grain by Polish demonstrators at the border
The Ukrainian government denounces the “deliberate destruction” by Polish protesters of Ukrainian grain destined for the European Union on the border between the two countries. Ukraine’s Ministry of Agrarian Policy said in a statement it “strongly condemns” Sunday’s incident. kyiv further urged Warsaw to “rapidly” identify and punish the perpetrators.
Ukraine says it is outraged by border blockades by Polish farmers
An outcry has erupted in Ukraine after a new incident on the border with Poland where disgruntled Polish farmers blocking the border with Ukraine dumped Ukrainian grain destined for the European Union onto the road. This action aroused strong reactions in Ukraine – this country with a strong agricultural tradition, where millions of people died in 1932-1933 during the Great Famine (Holodomor) artificially organized by the Stalinist regime.
“Today we are witnessing a new escalation of violence on our common border,” Taras Katchka, Ukrainian Deputy Minister of Economy, denounced on Facebook. The lack of reaction from the Polish authorities to the destruction of the deliveries will lead to more xenophobia and political violence.” He denounces Warsaw’s “indifference”. If the Polish authorities do not react, the “gang” that organized the border blockade will “start killing Ukrainians because they are Ukrainians,” he said.
The Kremlin and Elon Musk deny that Starlink is used by the Russian army
The Kremlin and Elon Musk have formally denied kyiv’s accusations that Russian forces use the Starlink satellite internet access service, owned by the American billionaire, on the front. “This is a system not certified in our country, which therefore cannot be officially supplied,” Vladimir Putin’s spokesperson, Dmitri Peskov, told the press. µTherefore, it cannot be used in any way.”
Elon Musk, owner of Starlink, denied on Sunday any delivery of his system to Moscow. “This is completely false. To our knowledge, no Starlink terminal has been sold directly or indirectly to Russia,” he declared on X. However, Ukraine reiterated on Monday its accusations made the day before. “Starlink is freely available in Russia through third countries,” said Andriy Yusov, spokesperson for the Main Directorate of Ukrainian Military Intelligence, on Ukrainian television.
A number of false news reports claim that SpaceX is selling Starlink terminals to Russia.
This is categorically false.
To the best of our knowledge, no Starlinks have been sold directly or indirectly to Russia.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) February 11, 2024
In Ukraine, the heavy human toll of two years of war
In its latest report published on January 15, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights estimates Ukrainian civilian casualties at more than 10,000 since February 2022. Among them, nearly 8,000 were in the areas controlled by Ukraine and more than 2,000 in areas occupied by Russia. Added to this are more than 19,000 injured.
The Ukrainian police, for their part, have recorded nearly 10,000 civilian deaths, 7,000 missing and 11,000 injured in the areas they control. But Ukrainian authorities estimate that thousands more civilians were killed during the siege of Mariupol [de février à mai 2022]. An advisor to the city’s mayor assured Ukrainian television in February 2023 that at least 25,000 people had been buried in mass graves there.
On the Russian side of the border, the death toll stands at at least 138, according to a count carried out by the Russian news site 7×7. The latest official reports, which are subject to caution, date back a year and a half: 5,937 Russian soldiers were killed according to statements by Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in September 2022.
Ukraine and Russian disinformation on the agenda of a meeting between Paris, Berlin and Warsaw
The fight against disinformation coming from Russia and increased support for Ukraine are on the agenda of discussions on Monday by French, German and Polish foreign ministers, meeting at the Château de La Celle-Saint-Cloud, near Paris.
The ministers will jointly report new information attacks launched by Moscow against the three countries. “Our three countries have been victims of the same destabilization strategy. On Monday, we will make announcements on new cooperation against disinformation and Russian information attacks,” declared Stéphane Séjourné, the new head of French diplomacy, in an interview with the French regional daily. West France, published Saturday. So far, the attacks have been launched via troll factories and d