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People's Daily Online

Facts about Russia-Ukraine conflict: Russia says U.S. recruiting terrorists to fight in Ukraine

People's Daily Online

(Xinhua) 10:53, May 26, 2022

BEIJING, May 25 (Xinhua) -- The following are the latest developments in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine:

The United States is actively recruiting members of international terrorist organizations, including the Islamic State (ISIS), as mercenaries to fight in Ukraine, the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) has said.

In April this year, about 60 ISIS militants aged 20-25 were released from prisons controlled by the Syrian Kurds with the participation of American intelligence services, the SVR said in a recent statement.

They were "transferred to the U.S. military base Al-Tanf, located in Syria near the border with Jordan and Iraq, for combat training with a view to subsequent delivery to Ukraine," according to the statement.

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Russia will continue its special military operation in Ukraine despite the sanctions and increased Western assistance to Kiev, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Tuesday.

"We will continue the special military operation until all objectives are accomplished, despite the large-scale Western assistance to Kiev, and the sanctions pressure on Russia," local media reported, citing Shoigu during a meeting of the Council of Defense Ministers of the Collective Security Treaty Organization.

Shoigu added that Russia was intentionally slowing its offensive in Ukraine "to avoid civilian casualties."

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Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Wednesday to simplify the procedure for residents in the Zaporizhzhya and Kherson regions in southern Ukraine to apply for Russian citizenship.

Putin signed the document to amend an April 2019 decree, expanding the favorable terms from serving Donetsk and Lugansk residents to covering people of the current four places.

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Wednesday that the end of the conflict in Ukraine depends on the West's position on aid to Kiev and Russia's desire to sit down at the negotiating table, the government-run Ukrinform news agency reported.

"As for when this war may end, I think it depends on some things, specific things. First of all, on the desire of different parties," Zelensky said while speaking via video link with the "Ukrainian breakfast" event at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

There will be a peace process in any case after the military part of the conflict is over, Zelensky said, adding he supports holding peace talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin without any mediators.

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Hungary's Prime Minister Viktor Orban declared a state of emergency immediately after his new government was sworn in on Tuesday. The special legal order takes effect at 12 midnight on May 24.

Orban said that the state of emergency will allow the government to use "all tools of the state" and "react immediately" to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

"The world is on the brink of an economic crisis," he said, reiterating that Hungary must stay out of the Russia-Ukraine conflict and the government must protect the financial security of families.

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Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand announced Tuesday that Canada will donate more military aid for Ukraine.

In a news release, the minister said over 20,000 artillery rounds of 155 mm NATO standard ammunition, including fuses and charge bags, will be sent to further support Ukraine's military.

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