Situation around Ukraine in brief. February 7

07.02.2023, Moscow.

We publish a summary of events concerning the situation around Ukraine as of 10 p.m., February 7.

Political situation

Lavrov slams Borrell for his statement about Africa, “This says a man who does not know how to hide the racist nature of his view of the world. Not so long ago he said publicly and unashamedly that Europe is an idyllic garden, probably presenting himself as a gardener, and Europe is surrounded by jungle which threatens the idyllic garden, so the garden must be more careful with the jungle and protect its well-being from its negative influence. There is nothing to add as to who and how treats the needs and interests of African countries. We have nothing to hide or be ashamed of. We were at the root of Africa’s liberation from the colonial yoke. The Soviet Union was one of the main initiators of the 1960 Declaration on the Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries and Peoples. And it was not an imitation, as Boris Johnson recently called the Minsk agreements, but a real historical act that sealed the fall of colonial rule.”

At the EEAS Conference on Foreign Information Manipulation and Interference, Vice-President of the European Commission Josep Borrell said that African countries are an easy target for Russia’s propaganda.

Head of the Russian Foreign Ministry Sergey Lavrov received the title of Commander of the National Order of Mali – the state award of this country, said the foreign minister of the African country Abdoulaye Diop.

Former metropolises must understand that the world has changed, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said during his visit to Mali. Countries that were former metropolises must now know their place, Lavrov said. The world has changed since they were metropolises, the Russian foreign minister stressed. The metropolises should forget how they exploited the African continent.

“Tankers in Iran’s ‘ghost fleet’ have switched to carrying Russian oil since western curbs on Moscow intensified in December, as the Kremlin turned to sanctions-busting techniques pioneered by Tehran. At least 16 vessels that formed part of the “ghost” network that allowed Iran to breach US sanctions have begun to ship Russian crude oil over the past two months,” Financial Times.

Global Times‘ military expert Song Zhongping commented on the NATO chief’s recent trip to Asia in his article. Sun stressed that one of its goals was to coordinate Washington’s strategy to contain Beijing. He believes the USA wants to turn Japan into a “Ukraine of Asia” to fight China and Russia. “Among all Asian countries, Japan is a special case. In both World War I and II, Japan was a country advocating power politics, and its aggression in the past had brought countless suffering to regional countries. The country also considers itself a Western country. China and Japan has not only geopolitical tension, but also historical conflict. All these will be fully taken advantage of by Washington. Japan may become a ‘Ukraine of Asia’ if continuing follow the US’ strategy to contain China closely.” 

The EU will not impose sanctions on petroleum products produced from Russian oil outside Russia. In addition, the price deck will not apply to the mixing of Russian oil products and products from other countries.


The Verkhovna Rada [Ukrainian government] presented bills on the extension of martial law and general mobilization for 90 days.

The Verkhovna Rada appointed Vasiliy Malyuk as head of the Security Service of Ukraine.

Prime Minister Shmygal proposed to appoint Igor Klimenko as Minister of Internal Affairs. He is currently acting minister due to the death of Denis Monastyrskyy in a helicopter crash.

The Verkhovna Rada officially appealed to the Georgian authorities to immediately send the ex-president of Georgia, citizen of Ukraine Mikhail Saakashvili for treatment abroad.

Ukraine is working to unblock a decision by Western allies to provide Ukraine with the first squadron of foreign combat aircraft. This was announced by Foreign Minister Dmitriy Kuleba, the Foreign Ministry reports.

Igor Abramovich, a former member of the faction Opposition Platform – For Life, has written a statement on resigning his mandate. Abramovich resigned from the faction at the beginning of the special operation.

The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church will switch to a new style holidays – the Gregorian calendar – as of September 1. These are holidays with a specific date, such as Christmas (but not floating like Easter).

Western countries and their supporters

In France, trade unions launched a third wave of nationwide strikes against President Emmanuel Macron’s plans to make the French work longer before retirement, France 24 wrote. Public transport was disrupted and refinery deliveries were halted across France as workers walked out on the job. More than 750,000 people turned out for protests across France, according to the interior ministry. Union organisers estimated participation nationwide at close to 2 million.

Japan held National Rally to Demand the Return of the Northern Territories, the participants of which made territorial claims against Russia. The prime minister, foreign minister, deputies, and government officials of Japan took part in the rally. The result was a statement: Japan demanded to give it Iturup, Kunashir, Shikotan and a group of small islands. “It is unacceptable that the four northern islands were illegally occupied by the Soviet Union 77 years ago and still occupied today,” reads the final declaration of the rally.

Many representatives of the Republican Party in the US Congress have advocated giving up parts of Ukraine in favor of Russia, The Washington Post wrote.

Germany intends to transfer 187 Leopard 1 tanks to Ukraine. Rheinmetall plans to supply 88 tanks, and Flensburger Fahrzeugbau Gesellschaft 90 units of the Leopard 1.. This type of tank was removed from production in 1984.

Norwegian Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre said that his government has agreed to provide Ukraine with an aid package worth $7.2 billion over the next five years.

A UAV factory caught fire in the Marupe region of Latvia. The fire is spreading rapidly. 50 firefighters are working at the site.

Finland has not abandoned the idea of joining NATO together with Sweden, despite rumors about the possibility of separately joining the alliance, Finnish President Sauli Niinisto said at a joint press conference with Canadian Governor General Mary Simon.

The Netherlands provided military aid worth of €1.07 billion to Ukraine according to letters to the lower house of parliament from Dutch Defense Minister Kajsa Allongren, NL times reported.

The French government must increase arms supplies to Ukraine. This appeal to the French government is contained in the adopted resolution of the French Senate, which was broadcast on the Internet resources of the upper house of parliament. “There were 324 votes in favor of the resolution, 16 against. The Senate thus adopts the resolution,” summarized Pascale Gruny, deputy speaker of the Senate.

The huge shift to a war footing is creating a supply chain crisis in Europe as defence manufacturers struggle to ramp up production to replenish national stockpiles as well as maintain supplies to Ukraine, Financial Times wrote.

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