Kyiv/Moscow | Reuters:  Ukraine said a new attempt had begun on Friday to evacuate scores of civilians trapped in a ruined steel works in the city of Mariupol, after bloody fighting with Russian forces thwarted efforts to bring them to safety the previous day. Local authorities in Mariupol accused Russian forces on Friday of opening fire on a car on its way to evacuate civilians, killing a fighter, and violating a truce deal.

Top developments:

FIGHTING

* Russian forces in Ukraine's port of Mariupol continued their ground assault on the Azovstal steel plant for a second day, British military intelligence said.

* Russia's defence ministry said its missiles destroyed a large ammunition depot in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk. It also said its air defences shot down two Ukrainian warplanes, an Su-25 and a MiG-29, in the eastern Luhansk region. Reports of battlefield developments by both sides could not be independently confirmed by Reuters.

* President Vladimir Putin will send a "doomsday" warning to the West when he leads celebrations on
Monday marking the 77th anniversary of the Soviet Union's victory over Nazi Germany, brandishing Russia's vast firepower while its forces fight on in Ukraine.

* A Moscow court on Friday ordered the arrest in absentia of Alexander Nevzorov, a prominent Russian journalist accused of spreading false information about what Moscow calls its special military operation in Ukraine.

* Russia's defence ministry said on Friday its missiles hit a weapons depot near the eastern Ukrainian city
of Popasna and hit 31 areas where Ukrainian forces were deployed, RIA news agency reported.

HUMAN IMPACT

* Amnesty International said there was compelling evidence that Russian troops had committed war crimes, including extrajudicial executions of civilians, when they occupied an area outside Ukraine's capital in February and March. Moscow has denied that its forces committed abuses.

* Russia's invasion of Ukraine has devastated hundreds of hospitals and other medical institutions and left doctors without drugs to tackle cancer or the ability to perform surgery, President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said.

* Rssia has handed over 41 people, including 28 military, in a prisoner exchange with Ukraine, Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said on Friday.

ECONOMIC IMPACT

* Nearly 25 million tonnes of grains are stuck in Ukraine and unable to leave the country due to infrastructure challenges and blocked Black Sea ports including Mariupol, the U.N. food agency said, a factor in soaring food prices abroad.

INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE

* The European Commission has proposed changes to its planned embargo on Russian oil to give Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic more time to prepare for the shift in their energy supplies, three EU sources said on Friday.

* Germany will deliver seven self-propelled howitzers to Ukraine, Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht said on Friday, in a further reversal of a longtime policy not to send heavy weapons to war zones due to the country's Nazi past.

* U.S. President Joe Biden said he would speak with leaders from the G7 advanced economies this week about more sanctions.

* Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida warned that Russia's invasion of Ukraine could be replicated in East Asia if leading powers do not respond as one, saying peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait must be maintained.

QUOTES

"If you consider just medical infrastructure, as of today Russian troops have destroyed or damaged nearly 400 healthcare institutions: hospitals, maternity wards, outpatient clinics," Zelenskiy said.

Posted By: Sugandha Jha