Russia-Ukraine war: What happened today (March 30)
As Wednesday draws to a close in Kyiv and in Moscow, here are the key developments of the day:
Despite Russia's pledge to reduce attacks, areas of Kyiv and Chernihiv are still getting shelled, local officials said. The Pentagon said about a fifth of Russian forces around Kyiv have been moving north from the Ukrainian capital toward Belarus, but they are believed to be en route to resupply and regroup for potential deployments elsewhere in Ukraine. The British defense ministry said Russia's public refocus on eastern regions put new pressure on its military's strained logistics.
The number of Ukrainians fleeing abroad has topped 4 million, according to the U.N. refugee agency. More than half have gone to neighboring Poland, with others fleeing to nearby Romania, Moldova, Hungary, Slovakia and other countries. Some 350,000 have fled to Russia, the U.N. estimates. Officials in besieged Mariupol accused the Russian military of forcibly deporting thousands of city residents to Russia.
Germany and Austria triggered the first stage of their natural gas emergency plans. Germany called on people and businesses to conserve the resource in preparation for a possible shortage. Russia supplies about half of Germany's natural gas and has said it will start demanding payments only in rubles, which Germany and other G-7 countries have rejected. Poland said it will ban all imports of Russian gas, oil and coal by the end of the year.
The White House claimed it has information that Russian President Vladimir Putin feels misled by the Russian military. A spokesperson declined to share evidence but said the U.S. believes Putin is being misinformed by advisers on the status of the military campaign and the sanctions' impact on Russia's economy.
After escaping their besieged city, one Ukrainian family tries to plan for a new life.
In Poland, residents quickly launched grassroots efforts to take in Ukrainian refugees.
Kyiv is urging companies to resume bike rentals so residents can move around the city.
In a rare sign of U.S.-Russia cooperation, astronauts from both countries returned to Earth together.
How Putin conquered Russia's oligarchy: NPR's Planet Money explains.
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