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Crisis, Trump, Russia’s tantrums, and cheap bloody gas: Foreign media digest as of April 14

Western media continue to cover the war in Ukraine: on April 14, the media reported about a three-dimensional world crisis over the Russian invasion, support from Ireland, and Russia’s new threats over the desire of Finland and Sweden to join NATO.

In addition, the European Commission decided that paying Russia for gas in rubles means violating the terms of the sanctions, and Putin assured that his bloody gas and oil are cheaper than American ones.

The Page offers an up-to-date preview of what the European and American media are reporting on the 50th day of active Russian invasion.

Three-dimensional world crisis over Russian aggression

Photo: Pixabay

Photo: Pixabay

According to The New York Times, the United Nations has offered devastating details of the global effects of the war in Ukraine, a "three-dimensional crisis" upending the flow of food, energy and money around the world.

Quote"We are now facing a perfect storm that threatens to devastate the economies of many developing countries," said António Guterres, the organization’s secretary general.

In its first official report on the war’s impact, the U.N. said the war in Ukraine was having alarming cascading effects on a global economy already battered by the pandemic and climate change.

In particular, up to 1.7 billion people — a third of whom are already living in poverty — now face food, energy and finance disruptions. With energy prices rising as much as 50 percent for natural gas in recent months, and with inflation growing and development stalled, many countries risk defaulting on their debts.

Quote"These are countries where people struggle to afford healthy diets, where imports are essential to satisfy the food and energy needs of their populations," the report said.

107 countries had severe exposure to at least one the three dimensions of the crisis, and that of those nations, 69 had severe exposure to all three dimensions.

Ukraine and Russia provide about 30 percent of the world’s wheat and barley. The war has sent commodity prices to record highs — with food prices 34 percent higher than in 2021, and crude oil prices up by around 60 percent.

The rise in food prices threatens knock-on effects of social unrest, the authors of the report add.

Ireland to support Ukraine's accession to EU

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

The Guardian reports that Ireland’s Foreign Minister Simon Coveney was in Kyiv on April 14 as the first foreign minister in the UN Security Council.

After visiting areas in the capital directly affected by the invasion he met with Ukraine’s foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba and defense minister Oleksiy Reznikov.

Speaking during a press conference with Kuleba, Coveney said:

Quote"We don’t know yet how many citizens have lost their lives due to this Russian aggression but we know it is many, and the brutality and violence, not only against soldiers, but against Ukrainian civilians is something that is likely to be determined as war crimes in the future."

He also said that now Ukraine does not want sympathy: it needs action and strong practical support in defending itself:

Quote"Even though Ireland is militarily neutral, we are not neutral on this war and conflict and the future of your country."

Coveney assured that Ireland would support the full and prompt membership of Ukraine in the EU.

UK responds to Russia’s threats

Photo: Twitter Liz Truss

Photo: Twitter Liz Truss

The Guardian also reports that the UK’s foreign secretary Liz Truss reacted to today's Russian rhetoric about the possible expansion of NATO:

Quote"Sweden and Finland are free to choose their future without interference — the UK will support whatever they decide."

This happened after Russia’s deputy foreign minister Alexander Grushko had added his voice to warnings from Moscowia that it would take security measures if Sweden and Finland opt to join NATO.

Это произошло после того, как заместитель главы МИД России Александр Грушко присоединился к предупреждениям московии о том, что она примет меры безопасности, если Швеция и Финляндия решат вступить в НАТО.

Grushko said their membership of the military alliance will lead to "the most undesirable consequences".

Kremlin brandishes threats to the whole world

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

CNBC quoted Dmitry Medvedev, Deputy Chairman of the Russian Security Council, as saying that Finland and Sweden would become Russia's enemies if they joined NATO.

The change would give Moscow "more officially registered opponents," Medvedev wrote on Telegram.

Quote"In this case, it will no longer be possible to talk about any nuclear–free status of the Baltic — the balance must be restored," he said. "Until today, Russia has not taken such measures and was not going to."

He added that Russia’s response should be taken with "no emotion, with a cold head."

Earlier, Finland and Sweden’s leaders said their security assessments had dramatically changed following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Trump started talking about genocide in Bucha

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

Sky News quotes former US President Donald Trump as joining Joe Biden in calling what is happening in Ukraine a genocide.

Biden made the comments earlier this week and now his predecessor, who has in the past spoken of his admiration for Vladimir Putin, has told Fox News:

Quote"And now add to that what's going in Ukraine — that's genocide. What's happening in Ukraine, people have never seen anything like that before."

During his time in office Trump faced accusations of collusion with Russia during his election campaign. He also threatened to withhold military aid from Ukraine at one point over his spat with the Biden family — leading to him being impeached.

"Stable and cheap" bloody gas

Photo: Getty Images

Photo: Getty Images

Sky News also reports that Vladimir Putin has warned against further attempts for Western countries to replace Russian oil with alternatives.

He said:

Quote"This will have consequences for the world economy and the consequences of such steps can be very painful."

Even what he calls "unfriendly countries" have not been able to stop using Russian gas. Russia says supplies have been running into Europe, despite Western commitments to wean themselves off supplies.

Putin admitted there has been disruption in payments for oil and gas after he demanded payment be made in rubles, and said gas companies are "responsible" players in the global market.

He also accused the US of having more expensive supply lines, adding Russia's is stable and cheap.

European Commission "bans" payment in rubles


Reuters cites an internal European Commission note stating that paying for Russian gas in rubles by EU buyers, as demanded by Putin, would break the EU's sanctions regime against Moscow.

In March, Moscow proposed that energy buyers open accounts at Gazprombank, where payments in euros or dollars would be converted to rubles.

Quote"This mechanism would lead to a breach of the existing EU restrictive measures adopted in respect of Russia, its government, the Central Bank of Russia, and their proxies," the document reads.

In the case of such payments, Russia, through its central bank, will have total control over foreign currency, which it can manipulate entirely to its own benefit.

The government of the Netherlands will instruct companies not to pay for Russian gas in rubles, the Ministry of Economic Affairs assured.

At the same time, according to Austrian media, Putin assured Austrian Chancellor Karl Nehammer that Austria could continue to pay in euros

Instead of an afterword. It is obvious that the world is facing the inevitable consequences of the war in the center of Europe, when the impossibility to export food in full leaves many poor countries on the brink of starvation. As always, one question arises at the UN: how long will Russia remain in the Security Council and block decisions on Ukraine?

It is necessary to realize that that Moscowia is a dangerous "monkey with a grenade", that is, a nuclear weapon, not only for Ukraine, but for the entire civilized world, because its threats have no limits — from blocking the very "cheap and reliable" gas to all of Europe to attack the Baltic countries, or, as it is now, Finland and Sweden for their desire to defend themselves in the ranks of NATO. What the world will do with this, apart from sanctions restrictions, is another big question.

Kyiv has no choice but to require more weapons for self-defense, because intelligence is already reporting that Putin is ready to raze half of Ukraine to the ground, so we must defend ourselves with all possible means. Ukraine has been defending its right to exist for 50 days.

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