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Biden: stop imports of Russian oil and gas to US

| 8.3.22 |

American president, Joe Biden

 The American President, Joe Biden, has announced a ban on imports of Russian oil and gas into the US, in response to the invasion of Ukraine. In a televised statement, Biden explained that he made the decision in close contact with his allies and understood that some European partners would not be able to make the same move, due to their dependence on Russian oil.

 Meanwhile this morning at 9 am (8 am Italian time) a ceasefire in Ukraine was launched to allow the evacuation of civilians from Kiev, Kharkiv, Mariupol, Chernihiv and Sumy, in accordance with the agreement signed yesterday at the end of the third negotiating meeting between the Ukrainian and Russian delegations. , after the failure of the humanitarian corridor which did not produce results yesterday. 3,500 civilians have been evacuated from Sumy, in eastern Ukraine, according to regional governor Dmytro Zhyvytsky on Telegram, who reported the number of people who managed to leave the city. There were moments of tension during the day when a group of Russian soldiers in tanks accompanying a gun convoy started firing into the air or at trees, Zhyvytskyy explained, but no shots were fired at the buses, civilians being evacuated. 

According to the governor's announcement, the evacuation route outside the city was supposed to be closed by 7:30 p.m. local time (18:30 in Italy), a ceasefire regime was agreed to until 9 p.m.
Ukraine's Foreign Ministry accused Moscow of violating the ceasefire and bombing humanitarian corridors. "Russian forces are now bombing the humanitarian corridor from Zaporizhzhia to Mariupol. Eight trucks and thirty buses are ready to deliver humanitarian aid to Mariupol and to evacuate civilians to Zaporizhzhia. Pressure on Russia must be increased to fulfill its commitments", reads a tweet from the Kiev Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Kuleba accused Russia of "holding 300,000 civilians as hostages in Mariupol" and "preventing their evacuation despite an agreement with the mediation of the International Red Cross". 

The evacuation of civilians is underway in Irpin, a town west of the Kiev theater in the final days of intense fighting between Ukrainian and Russian forces. This was announced by the governor of the region, Oleksiy Kuleba, quoted by the BBC. Nearly 3,000 civilians have been assisted. Russian troops are sabotaging efforts to evacuate civilians from the Bucha district, a center in the Kiev region, according to the head of the regional government Oleksiy Kuleba, writes the BBC. "The district is preparing for mass evacuations and providing humanitarian assistance. A ceasefire is needed for this."

American President Joe Biden, as mentioned, has announced an embargo on imports of oil and natural gas from Russia as part of renewed pressure against the invasion of Ukraine. This will happen regardless of the divided stance of European allies on the issue. "It will not be forever Putin can use fossil fuels as a weapon against other countries," the American president said at a press conference. Biden added that "this crisis is a clear reminder to protect our economy in the long term and become energy independent", explaining that with European partners it has become urgent to "wean off Russian oil" and "accelerate the transition to clean energy". The President would like to clarify that this decision will not lower energy prices for families, but will serve to change In addition to oil, Washington aims to hit Moscow's gold with a group of Democratic and Republican senators who intend to introduce measures to this effect. 

"Huge gold reserves are one of the last assets Putin can use to prevent Russia's economic collapse. By imposing sanctions on reserves, we can further isolate Russia and make it more difficult for Putin to finance his military campaign," said the senator who wanted approval of action earlier this week. . The British government also plans to exit all imports of Russian oil as additional sanctions against the war in Ukraine. The move, Bloomberg reported citing a person familiar with the plan, would be implemented over the next few months in coordination with the US but would not involve Russian gas.

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