politics

More Than 90% of Ukrainians Believe Their Country Will Win the War; Zelenskyy Warns of WWIII

Aris Messinis | AFP | Getty Images

This is CNBC's live blog tracking developments on the war in Ukraine. See below for the latest updates. 

More than 90% of Ukrainians believe their country will win the war with Russia, a poll by local research institute Rating Group showed. The survey of 1,000 respondents also found that 74% support direct talks with Russian leader Vladimir Putin.

The United Nations says 10 million Ukrainians have fled their homes, including those who have left the country and others who remain within the border.

Meanwhile, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy made a direct appeal to Moscow and the people of Russia, claiming 14,000 Russian soldiers have been killed since the invasion began. Zelenskyy also warned of dire consequences if ongoing ceasefire talks with Russia fail.

And, according to Mariupol's city council, Russian bombs fell on an art school in the city where about 400 residents were in hiding.

Shares of Russia's Rusal dive after alumina ban

Rolls of aluminum foil at the Sayanal foil mill, operated by United Co. Rusal, in Sayanogorsk, Russia, on Wednesday, May 26, 2021.
Andrey Rudakov | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Rolls of aluminum foil at the Sayanal foil mill, operated by United Co. Rusal, in Sayanogorsk, Russia, on Wednesday, May 26, 2021.

The Hong Kong-listed shares of Rusal, a Russian aluminum producer, dropped by as much as 8.9% following an announcement by the Australian government that it would ban exports of alumina to Russia.

Several Australian ministries on Sunday jointly announced a ban on exports of alumina and aluminum ores including bauxite to Russia.

The ban is part of Australia's sanctions against Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine.

Last week, Canberra sanctioned two Russian oligarchs who have links to Australia's mining industry, Reuters reported. One was Oleg Deripaska, who holds a stake in Queensland Alumina, a joint venture between Rusal and Anglo-Australian mining company Rio Tinto.

The Sydney-traded shares of Rio Tinto edged higher on Monday.

— Ted Kemp

Russian advances on Kyiv from the north-east have 'stalled,' says UK Defense Ministry

A charred Russian tank is seen, amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, on the front line in the Kyiv region, Ukraine March 20, 2022.
Ukrainian Ground Forces | Reuters
A charred Russian tank is seen, amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, on the front line in the Kyiv region, Ukraine March 20, 2022.

Russian forces advancing on the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv from the north-east have "stalled," according to the UK Defense Ministry's latest intelligence update.

"Heavy fighting continues north of Kyiv," the ministry said, adding that the city "remains Russia's primary military objective" despite a continued lack of progress.

"Forces advancing from the direction of Hostomel to the north-west have been repulsed by fierce Ukrainian resistance."

The bulk of Russia's forces remain more than 25 kilometers from the center of the city, according to the ministry.

— Eustance Huang

More than 90% of Ukrainians believe their country will win the war, poll finds

A man leaves with a few belongings from a building damaged after a Russian rocket fire in the cottage district of Kharkiv, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
A man leaves with a few belongings from a building damaged after a Russian rocket fire in the cottage district of Kharkiv, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.

Some 93% of Ukrainian survey respondents believe their country will win the war against Russia, according to a poll conducted by local research institute Rating Group.

Nearly half of those surveyed hope the war will end over the next few weeks, while almost a quarter of the respondents believe the conflict will last several months.

Rating Group polled 1,000 Ukrainians who are 18 years and above from all regions, except Crimea and Donbas.

The survey also found that 74% of respondents are supportive of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's direct talks with Russian leader Vladimir Putin, but 89% are against a temporary truce that doesn't include a Russian troop withdrawal.

— Abigail Ng

Biden to travel to Poland on Friday

President Joe Biden will be heading to Poland on Friday to discuss how to support Ukraine following "Russia's unjustified and unprovoked war on Ukraine," the White House said.

People who have fled war-torn Ukraine pass the time in a shelter set up in a primary school not far from the Ukrainian border on March 16, 2022 in Przemysl, Poland.
Sean Gallup | Getty Images
People who have fled war-torn Ukraine pass the time in a shelter set up in a primary school not far from the Ukrainian border on March 16, 2022 in Przemysl, Poland.

He will meet with Polish President Andrzej Duda in Warsaw to discuss the global response to the unfolding humanitarian and human rights crisis in Ukraine. Their bilateral meeting will take place after Biden's meetings with NATO allies, G-7 leaders and European Union leaders in Brussels.

Poland has received the bulk of the 3.3 million Ukrainians who have fled their country since the start of the war. According to the UN Refugee Agency, Poland has taken in more than two million Ukrainian refugees.

Joanna Tan

Xi won't take a position on Ukraine that could undermine Putin, says political analyst

US President Joe Biden meets with China's President Xi Jinping during a virtual summit from the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC, November 15, 2021.
Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images
US President Joe Biden meets with China's President Xi Jinping during a virtual summit from the Roosevelt Room of the White House in Washington, DC, November 15, 2021.

China does not want to take a strong position on Ukraine that could undermine Russia, said Scott Kennedy of Washington D.C.-based think tank Center for Strategic and International Studies.

It doesn't appear that Beijing has yet provided any military assistance to Moscow or violated the economic sanctions on Russia, he said.

"But they've not said no. And I think what the U.S. is trying to do is make sure that doesn't happen. And they just can't get a yes out of the Chinese [or] any kind promise," Kennedy told CNBC's "Squawk Box Asia" on Monday.

President Joe Biden spoke to Xi for nearly two hours on Friday regarding the Russian invasion of Ukraine. He warned China of global backlash and "consequences" if Beijing helps Russia on its war against Ukraine.

— Sumathi Bala

Russia demands Ukrainian forces lay down arms in Mariupol

Local residents, who seek refuge in the basement of a building during Ukraine-Russia conflict, are seen in the besieged southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine March 17, 2022.
Alexander Ermochenko | Reuters
Local residents, who seek refuge in the basement of a building during Ukraine-Russia conflict, are seen in the besieged southern port city of Mariupol, Ukraine March 17, 2022.

Russia called on Ukrainian forces to lay down their arms in the eastern port city of Mariupol, Reuters reports.

"Lay down your arms," Colonel-General Mikhail Mizintsev, the director of the Russian National Center for Defense Management, said in a briefing distributed by Russia's defense ministry, according to Reuters. "All who lay down their arms are guaranteed safe passage out of Mariupol."

Mizintsev also claimed in the briefing that humanitarian corridors for civilians would be opened to the east and the west out of Mariupol at 10 a.m. Moscow time (3 a.m. ET) on Monday.

He said Ukraine has until 5 a.m. Moscow time (10 a.m. ET) on Sunday to lay down arms and accept its offer of humanitarian corridors. Mizintsev, without providing evidence, said Ukrainian "bandits," "neo-Nazis" and nationalists had engaged in "mass terror" in Mariupol, Reuters reports.

—Terri Cullen

Johnson speaks to Zelenskyy ahead of NATO and G-7 meetings

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson looks on during a news conference at British Embassy in Warsaw, Poland, March 1, 2022.
Kacper Pempel | Reuters
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson looks on during a news conference at British Embassy in Warsaw, Poland, March 1, 2022.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson told Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy that he planned to discuss advancing Ukraine's interests at the NATO and G-7 meetings this week, according to a Downing Street readout of the call.

Johnson also requested a battlefield assessment as well as an update on the ongoing negotiations between Ukrainian and Russian officials.

"Both leaders stressed the continued importance of sanctions in exerting pressure on Putin and they condemned the abhorrent attacks on innocent civilians, following the appalling bombings in Mariupol," a Downing Street spokesperson wrote in a statement.

"The two leaders agreed to step up their direct communication even further in the days to come," the spokesperson added.

–Amanda Macias

A look at NATO's military footprint on Ukraine's borders

NATO Eastern Flank Graphic
NATO
NATO Eastern Flank Graphic

Since the Kremlin's Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine, NATO has readied 140,000 troops in the region and mobilized a colossal war chest of advanced military equipment in preparation.

The U.S. service members and NATO troops are currently deployed in neighboring NATO member countries and are not directly fighting with Russian forces inside Ukraine.

The alliance, which has more than 140 warships at the ready as well as 130 aircraft on heightened alert, has previously warned Russian President Vladimir Putin that an attack on a NATO member state will be viewed as an attack on all, triggering the group's cornerstone Article 5.

Ukraine, which has sought NATO membership since 2002, is bordered by four NATO allies; Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania. Poland currently hosts the majority of the troops from the 30-member alliance and has thus far taken the lion's share of refugees fleeing Putin's war.

—Amanda Macias

Some personnel partially rotated, evacuated at Chornobyl nuclear plant

The Chornobyl Nuclear Plant said that some employees were able to rotate out or leave after having been forced to work for more than 3 weeks straight following the Russian takeover of the facility.

As of Saturday, 64 people were evacuated, according to a translation of a Facebook post. At the same time, 46 people volunteered to replace some of the employees to maintain an appropriate level of safety.

The rotations come after the director of the International Atomic Energy Agency warned he was "gravely concerned" with the difficult circumstances the staff was facing at the site.

—Jessica Bursztynsky

UN says 10 million Ukrainians have fled their homes

People, mainly women and children, arrive at Przemysl train station on a train which came from Kyiv in war-torn Ukraine on March 20, 2022 in Przemysl, Poland.
Jeff J Mitchell | Getty Images
People, mainly women and children, arrive at Przemysl train station on a train which came from Kyiv in war-torn Ukraine on March 20, 2022 in Przemysl, Poland.

The war in Ukraine has caused 10 million Ukrainians to flee their homes, including those who have left the country and others who remain within the border, the head of the U.N.'s refugee agency said.

"Among the responsibilities of those who wage war, everywhere in the world, is the suffering inflicted on civilians who are forced to flee their homes," Filippo Grandi said on Twitter.

More than 3.3 million people have fled the country as of Saturday, according to data from the U.N. The bulk of those have sough refuge in Poland, with others travelling to neighboring countries such as Romania, Moldova, Hungary and Slovakia.

The U.N. had initially predicted 4 million people would leave Ukraine to escape the violence.

—Jessica Bursztynsky

Pope urges end to 'senseless massacre' in Ukraine

Pope Francis leads the Angelus prayer from the window of the Apostolic Palace at the Vatican, March 20, 2022.
Vatican Media | via Reuters
Pope Francis leads the Angelus prayer from the window of the Apostolic Palace at the Vatican, March 20, 2022.

Pope Francis called Russia's attacks on Ukraine a "senseless massacre where every day there is a repetition of slaughter and atrocities.

"There is no justification for this! I plead with the international community to truly commit to ending this abhorrent war," the Pope tweeted in English, Ukrainian and Russian.

"This week again missiles and bombs have fallen on civilians, the elderly, children, and pregnant mothers. All this is inhuman!," he said. "Indeed, it is also sacrilegious because it goes against the sacredness of human life, and this comes before any strategy!"

Leslie Josephs

Sasse says the U.S. is moving too slowly on Ukraine military aid

Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse accused the Biden administration of moving too slowly on providing weapons to Ukraine as it tries to fight off Russian attacks.

"We don't need to have fighter pilots in the air. We don't need to have boots on the ground inside Ukraine because Ukrainians have the will to fight," Sasse, a Republican and member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, said in an interview with "Fox News Sunday." "We need to have the will to rearm them constantly."

Sasse defended his vote against an omnibus legislation that included Ukraine aid, saying the aid totaled less than 1% of the package.

Leslie Josephs

At least 902 Ukrainians killed, 1,459 injured in Ukraine, UN says

Workers load a coffin of a Ukrainian soldier onto a car at the morgue in Mykolaiv, Ukraine on March 18, 2022.
Alejandro Martinez | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Workers load a coffin of a Ukrainian soldier onto a car at the morgue in Mykolaiv, Ukraine on March 18, 2022.

Russian forces have killed at least 902 civilians, including 75 children, since it began its invasion of Ukraine, the United Nations said.

At least an additional 1,459 people have been injured, including 98 children, from Feb. 24 through March 19, according to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

The majority of casualties recorded have been caused by the use of explosive weapons with a "wide impact area," the agency said. That includes shelling from heavy artillery and air strikes.

The agency said it believes the actual number of casualties are "considerably higher," since information from areas with intense fighting is delayed and some reports are being corroborated.

—Jessica Bursztynsky

Russia is feeding its soldiers into ‘wood chipper’ in Ukraine, U.S. Defense chief Austin says

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin speaks during a news conference in Warsaw, Poland February 18, 2022.
Slawomir Kaminski | Agencja Wyborcza.pl via REUTERS
U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin speaks during a news conference in Warsaw, Poland February 18, 2022.

The Russian government is essentially feeding its soldiers "into a wood chipper" as it continues its invasion on Ukraine, U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said on CBS's "Face the Nation."

Ukraine's Ministry of Foreign Affairs claimed about 14,700 Russian armed forces have been killed since the start of the invasion.

It's been extremely difficult to pinpoint the number of Russian deaths. American intelligence estimates more than 7,000 Russian soldiers have been killed, The New York Times said Wednesday. Russia, meanwhile, has claimed fewer than 500 deaths, the paper reported.

"It's had the effect of him moving his forces into a wood chipper," Austin said of Russian President Vladimir Putin. "The Ukrainians have continued to attrite his forces and they've been very effective using the equipment we've provided them."

Russia's campaign now has "essentially stalled," with Putin being unable "to achieve the goals as rapidly as he wants to achieve them."

—Jessica Bursztynsky

This $50 million Colorado mansion could become a sanctions target

Rocky Mountain mansion owned by oligarch Roman Abramovich outside Aspen, Co.
Courtesy: Pitkin County Assessor
Rocky Mountain mansion owned by oligarch Roman Abramovich outside Aspen, Co.

Experts say a $50 million Colorado mansion owned by Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich would likely be among the first assets frozen if he is sanctioned by the White House in response to the war in Ukraine, CNBC's Robert Frank reports.

Abramovich owns a 14,000-square-foot home on 200 acres in Snowmass, Colorado, near Aspen. The Russian billionaire bought the property in 2008 for $36.5 million. Abramovich also owns a 5,500-square-foot home in Snowmass Village, which he purchased in 2008 for $11.8 million.

Struggling with a lack of supply of mega-homes near Aspen, real-estate brokers hungry for listings are likely trying to reach out to Abramovich to get him to sell, according to Riley Warwick, co-founder of Aspen-based brokerage team Saslove & Warwick at Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

"A lot of my clients have been asking about it," he said.

—Terri Cullen

Biden will not be visiting Ukraine, White House says

U.S. President Joe Biden walks from Marine One upon his return to the White House in Washington, U.S., February 28, 2022.
Kevin Lamarque | Reuters
U.S. President Joe Biden walks from Marine One upon his return to the White House in Washington, U.S., February 28, 2022.

President Joe Biden will not be visiting Ukraine during his upcoming Europe trip, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said on Twitter.

"The trip will be focused on continuing to rally the world in support of the Ukrainian people and against President Putin's invasion of Ukraine, but there are no plans to travel into Ukraine," Psaki said.

Biden is set to meet with European leaders at a NATO summit in Brussels on March 24. Biden's first trip to Europe since Russia began its invasion of Ukraine comes after Vice President Kamala Harris visited Poland and Romania. But some have been calling on Biden to visit Ukraine, after leaders from Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovenia visited the capital of Kyiv.

"The president is going to Europe, and he will be meeting with all of our partners and allies there. I have not seen any discussions of going into Ukraine. But you have to remember, we have discouraged Americans from going into Ukraine. This is a country at war, I can't imagine that that would be on the table," U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Linda Thomas-Greenfield said earlier in the day on CNN's "State of the Union."

—Jessica Bursztynsky

Zelenskyy pushes back on Putin's false 'denazification' claim

A civilian is being controlled at a check point by pro-Russian separatists as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Stringer | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
A civilian is being controlled at a check point by pro-Russian separatists as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy pushed back against Russia's false claim the country needs to be "de-Nazified," saying President Vladimir Putin is extremely deep in a misinformation bubble.

"Putin is in an information bubble, I think this is an information bunker. It is so powerful, this bunker of information, that he really thinks that Ukrainians are neo-Nazis," Zelenskyy told CNN's Fareed Zakaria.

Russia has used the idea of demilitarizing and "de-Nazifying" Ukraine as one of its pretexts for war. Zelenskyy, who is Jewish and whose family members were killed in the Holocaust, said the idea of Ukrainians being neo-Nazis is "laughable," but he fears what else Putin "is capable of doing for his mission."

"They cannot just say about their feelings that Ukraine is a betrayer or that we are neo-Nazis, because Russians are acting in the same manner as neo-Nazis at the moment," Zelenskyy said.

—Jessica Bursztynsky

A local resident retrieves what he can from his destroyed apartment in Kyiv

A local resident retrieves what he can from his destroyed apartment, located in a five-story residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before.

A local resident retrieves what he can from his destroyed apartment, located in a five-storey residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before by Russian troops trying to encircle the Ukrainian capital as part of their slow-moving offensives, in Kyiv on March 20, 2022.
Sergei Supinsky | AFP | Getty Images
A local resident retrieves what he can from his destroyed apartment, located in a five-storey residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before by Russian troops trying to encircle the Ukrainian capital as part of their slow-moving offensives, in Kyiv on March 20, 2022.
A local resident speaks on his mobile phone as he retrieves what he can from his destroyed apartment, located in a five-storey residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before by Russian troops trying to encircle the Ukrainian capital as part of their slow-moving offensives, in Kyiv on March 20, 2022.
Sergei Supinsky | AFP | Getty Images
A local resident speaks on his mobile phone as he retrieves what he can from his destroyed apartment, located in a five-storey residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before by Russian troops trying to encircle the Ukrainian capital as part of their slow-moving offensives, in Kyiv on March 20, 2022.
A local resident carries a teddy bear out of his apartment in Kyiv on March 20, 2022 located in a five-storey residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before by Russian troops trying to encircle the Ukrainian capital as part of their slow-moving offensives.
Sergei Supinsky | AFP | Getty Images
A local resident carries a teddy bear out of his apartment in Kyiv on March 20, 2022 located in a five-storey residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before by Russian troops trying to encircle the Ukrainian capital as part of their slow-moving offensives.
A local resident smokes a cigarette after retrieving amongst other things, a huge teddy bear, from his destroyed apartment, located in a five-storey residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before by Russian troops trying to encircle the Ukrainian capital as part of their slow-moving offensives, in Kyiv on March 20, 2022.
Sergei Supinsky | AFP | Getty Images
A local resident smokes a cigarette after retrieving amongst other things, a huge teddy bear, from his destroyed apartment, located in a five-storey residential building that partially collapsed after shelling the day before by Russian troops trying to encircle the Ukrainian capital as part of their slow-moving offensives, in Kyiv on March 20, 2022.
Amid the intensified Russian offensive encircling Kyiv, a Russian missile struck the residential area in Podilskyi district which killed one civilian and injured dozens.
Sopa Images | Lightrocket | Getty Images
Amid the intensified Russian offensive encircling Kyiv, a Russian missile struck the residential area in Podilskyi district which killed one civilian and injured dozens.

Getty Images

Zelenskyy says country won't budge on Luhansk and Donetsk

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy meets Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, Petr Fiala, Prime Minister of Poland, Mateusz Morawieckiand Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Jansaduring their visit in Kyiv on behalf of EU Council, on March 16, 2022.
Ukrainian Presidency | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy meets Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, Petr Fiala, Prime Minister of Poland, Mateusz Morawieckiand Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Jansaduring their visit in Kyiv on behalf of EU Council, on March 16, 2022.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the country won't give up the two pro-Russian republics in the eastern region of the country or the Russian-annexed Crimea.

Russia has demanded that Ukraine recognize the independence of Donetsk and Luhansk. It's also called on Ukraine to recognize Crimea, which Moscow annexed in 2014, as Russian territory.

"You cannot just demand Ukraine to recognize some territories as republics, these compromises are simply wrong," Zelenskyy told CNN's Fareed Zakaria.

—Jessica Bursztynsky

Australia banning exports to Russia of materials used to make aluminum

An aluminum coil stands in a warehouse awaiting transport, at an Alcoa World Alumina Australia smelting plant, partially owned by Alumina Ltd., in Point Henry, Australia.
Carla Gottgens | Bloomberg | Getty Images
An aluminum coil stands in a warehouse awaiting transport, at an Alcoa World Alumina Australia smelting plant, partially owned by Alumina Ltd., in Point Henry, Australia.

The Australian government said it would ban exports of alumina and aluminum ores to Russia as part of its sanctions against the country for invading Ukraine.

The move will limit the country's capacity to produce aluminum, "a critical export for Russia," said the statement.

Australia provides 20% of Russia's alumina needs, according to the government.

Russia's Rusal International is the world's second-largest aluminum producer, according to Reuters.

John Melloy

Russia claims it fired hypersonic missiles on Ukraine again

Russia's MiG-31 supersonic interceptor jets carrying hypersonic Kinzhal missiles fly over Red Square during the Victory Day military parade in Moscow on May 9, 2018.
Yuri Kadobnov | AFP | Getty Images
Russia's MiG-31 supersonic interceptor jets carrying hypersonic Kinzhal missiles fly over Red Square during the Victory Day military parade in Moscow on May 9, 2018.

Russia's military claims it fired Kinzhal hypersonic missiles on Ukrainian targets again, this time hitting a fuel depot in Kostiantynivka, defense ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov said in a statement posted to the Kremlin's Telegram channel, according to NBC News and the AP.

Russia said it used the Kinzhal for the first time in combat on Saturday to target an ammunition depot in Western Ukraine. CNBC could not independently verify Russia's claims of using the missile.

Russian officials say the missiles can reach targets some 1,240 miles away, according to the BBC.

Konashenkov said Russia also launched cruise missiles from warships from the Caspian sea on the fuel depot strike.

Leslie Josephs

Civilians in Mariupol are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists

Civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists. Men were being checked before being allowed to leave the city.

Civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Stringer | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
A civilian is being controlled at a check point by pro-Russian separatists as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Stringer | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
A civilian is being controlled at a check point by pro-Russian separatists as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
A civilian is being controlled at a check point by pro-Russian separatists as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Stringer | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
A civilian is being controlled at a check point by pro-Russian separatists as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
A civilian is being controlled at a check point by pro-Russian separatists as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Stringer | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
A civilian is being controlled at a check point by pro-Russian separatists as civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Stringer | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.
Stringer | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Civilians trapped in Mariupol city under Russian attacks, are evacuated in groups under the control of pro-Russian separatists, through other cities, in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 20, 2022.

-Anadolu Agency

Zelenskyy: If Russia talks fail, that would mean a third world war

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy speaks during a news conference in Kyiv, Ukraine March 12, 2022.
Ukrainian Presidential Press Service | Reuters
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy speaks during a news conference in Kyiv, Ukraine March 12, 2022.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy warned that if peace talks with Russian leader Vladimir Putin fail, it would mean the start of a third global war.

"If these attempts fail, that would mean that this is a third world war," Zelenskyy said in an interview with CNN's Fareed Zakaria that aired Sunday morning.

Ukrainian and Russian officials have met intermittently for peace talks, which have failed to progress to key concessions. Still, Zelenksyy has called for another round of talks with Moscow.

"I think that without negotiations we cannot end this war," Zelenskyy said. "If there is just 1% chance for us to stop this war, we need to take this chance."

—Jessica Bursztynsky

Ukraine front lines are not shifting as Russia loses momentum, Ukrainian official says

Alexander Ermochenko | Reuters
A service member of pro-Russian troops in uniform without insignia jumps off a tank with the letters "Z" painted on it outside a residential building which was damaged during Ukraine-Russia conflict in the separatist-controlled town of Volnovakha in the Donetsk region, Ukraine March 11, 2022. 

Reuters reports that the front lines between Ukrainian and Russian forces are "practically frozen," citing a video address by presidential adviser Oleksiy Arestovych. The reason for the stalemate is that Russia doesn't have enough combat strength to push further into Ukraine, he said.

"(Over the past day) there were practically no rocket strikes on (Ukrainian) cities," Arestovych said, according to Reuters.

—Terri Cullen

Boris Johnson criticized for Ukraine-Brexit comparison

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during a joint press conference with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in London, Britain, March 7, 2022.
Alberto Pezzali | Reuters
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaks during a joint press conference with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in London, Britain, March 7, 2022.

Prominent politicians and officials have sharply rebuked Boris Johnson after the British prime minister tried to draw comparisons between the war in Ukraine and the 2016 Brexit vote.

Speaking Saturday, Johnson said that it was the instinct of Britons, like Ukrainians, to choose freedom. "I can give you a couple of famous recent examples. When the British people voted for Brexit, in such large, large numbers, I don't believe it was because they were remotely hostile to foreigners. It's because they wanted to be free to do things differently and for this country to be able to run itself," Johnson said.

The comments were branded tasteless by opposition figures in the U.K., while former president of the European Council, Donald Tusk, said his words would offend Ukrainians.

—Matt Clinch

Ukraine deputy PM calls Russia's actions 'war crimes'

Olga Stefanishyna, Ukraine's deputy prime minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration, spoke to Sky News this morning saying the situation in her country is growing "more and more severe."

She alleged that Moscow has committed "nearly all possible war crimes that humanity has seen."

She added: "The number of civilian victims is far more than those from the armed forces of Ukraine."

"Ukraine will resist as long as it is needed to make sure no terror, no genocide is committed on this land in the 21st century."

Read more here.

—Matt Clinch

Prosecutor General Office says 115 children have now died in the war

Ukraine's Prosecutor General Office tweeted Sunday saying 115 children have now died since the invasion began on Feb. 24.

—Matt Clinch

Ukraine's deputy PM announces humanitarian corridors

Ukraine's Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said seven humanitarian corridors had been agreed for Sunday.

One includes Mariupol to Zaporizhzhia in the Donetsk region, with private cars of Mariupol residents being refueled in Berdyansk on the way to Zaporizhzhia.

—Matt Clinch

Art school in Mariupol bombed, says city council

Russian bombs fell on an art school in the city of Mariupol where about 400 residents were in hiding, according to Mariupol's city council.

The council said the building was destroyed and "peaceful people are still under the rubble," adding that there were women, children and the elderly. CNBC and NBC News could not confirm if the report was accurate. "Information on the number of victims is being clarified," the council said on its official Telegram channel.

Earlier Sunday, President Zelenskyy said in a televised address that more than 4,000 residents in the besieged city of Mariupol managed to leave for Zaporizhzhya.

He said the Mariupol blockade "will go down in history" as a war crime. "To do such a thing with a peaceful city that the occupiers did is the terror that will be remembered even in centuries." 

Matt Clinch

Zelenskyy appeals directly to Russians

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy attends a meeting with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, Polish Deputy Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski, Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala and Slovenia's Prime Minister Janez Jansa, in Kyiv, Ukraine March 15, 2022.
Ukrainian Presidential Press Service | via Reuters
Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy attends a meeting with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, Polish Deputy Prime Minister Jaroslaw Kaczynski, Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala and Slovenia's Prime Minister Janez Jansa, in Kyiv, Ukraine March 15, 2022.

Ukraine's president made a direct appeal to Moscow and the people of Russia early on Sunday morning, claiming 14,000 Russian soldiers have been killed since the invasion began.

In his latest speech, Volodymyr Zelenskyy spoke in Russian saying: "This is 14,000 mothers ...This is 14,000 fathers. These are wives, these are children, relatives and friends."

"And you don't notice it? But there will only be more victims. As long as this war continues. Your war is against us, Russia against Ukraine. On our land," he said, according to an NBC News translation.

CNBC or NBC News has not independently verified the death toll. Estimates of Russian deaths have varied since the war started.

—Matt Clinch

UK warns of more civilian casualties as Russia increases shelling

Russia has made limited progress in capturing Ukraine's eastern cities even though the Kremlin continues to encircle a number of those cities, according to the latest intelligence by the U.K. Defense Ministry.

"Instead, Russia has increased its indiscriminate shelling of urban areas resulting in widespread destruction and large numbers of civilian casualties," the ministry said in a Twitter post.

Amid the intensified Russian offensive encircling Kyiv, a Russian missile struck the residential area in Podilskyi district which killed one civilian and injured dozens.
Sopa Images | Lightrocket | Getty Images
Amid the intensified Russian offensive encircling Kyiv, a Russian missile struck the residential area in Podilskyi district which killed one civilian and injured dozens.

It warned there could be increased civilian casualties as Russia will likely "continue to use its heavy firepower to support assaults on urban areas as it looks to limit its own already considerable losses."

Joanna Tan

Time will prove China is on the right side of history, China's foreign minister says

China is on the right side of history with regard to the Ukraine crisis — and time will prove it, said Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi, according to Chinese state media.

"We have always stood for maintaining peace and opposing war," Wang said, according to CGTN News.

His comments came after the Friday meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and U.S President Joe Biden, during which Biden warned of "consequences" if China were to provide material support to the Kremlin in its war against Ukraine.

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attends a press conference on China's foreign policy and foreign relations on the sidelines of the fifth session of the 13th National People's Congress NPC in Beijing, China on March 7, 2022.
Xinhua News Agency | Getty Images
Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attends a press conference on China's foreign policy and foreign relations on the sidelines of the fifth session of the 13th National People's Congress NPC in Beijing, China on March 7, 2022.

Speaking to reporters a day after the U.S.-China meeting, Wang said Beijing will make its own assessment of the situation in an objective and fair manner.

"We will never accept any external coercion or pressure, and we will also oppose any groundless accusations or suspicions targeted against China," he added.

Beijing has so far refrained from condemning Russia, and has refused to call the violence in Ukraine an "invasion."

Joanna Tan

Read CNBC’s previous live coverage here:

Russian progress 'significantly blunted' amid failure to control Ukraine airspace; China says it's on the right side of history

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