Putin and Lukashenko describe Bucha killings as ‘fake’ and ‘staged by Englishmen’ – POLITICO

Russian President Vladimir Putin known as the mass killing of civilians in Bucha “fake” and praised Russia’s “noble” battle in opposition to Ukraine throughout a go to to jap Russia with Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko on Tuesday.

“When it comes to Bucha … it’s the exact same fake as in Syria,” Putin mentioned, in reference to Russian claims from 2018 that using chemical weapons within the Syrian battle was staged by international brokers. Bucha was “a psychological operation staged by Englishmen,” Lukashenko added.

After Russian troops partially withdrew from Bucha, a city exterior of Kyiv, earlier this month, authorities found roads lined with civilians apparently tied up and shot at shut vary, in addition to mass graves of native residents. Russia has repeatedly denied it was accountable, however quite a few media retailers have independently proven that it was unlikely the scenes had been staged by Ukraine.

The Russian president was on a joint go to with the Belarusian premier to the Vostochny Cosmodrome in Russia’s far east to have fun “Space Day” and focus on the 2 nations’ house industries.

“What is happening in Ukraine is a tragedy … but they left us no choice,” Putin mentioned, including that Russia’s navy “goals are absolutely clear and noble.” He additionally slammed the U.S., alleging Washington was utilizing Ukraine as a proxy battle and was “ready to fight against Russia until the last Ukrainian” — whereas repeating claims it was “impossible” to isolate Russia with sanctions due to its dimension.

Russia’s economic system — which has been hammered by sanctions, inflation and capital flight since its invasion of Ukraine — is about to contract by over 10 p.c this 12 months, the largest drop in GDP in additional than twenty years.

Putin additionally advised reporters that negotiations with Ukraine had reached a “deadlock” on account of an “inconsistency on fundamental issues” and urged talks might happen in Belarus sooner or later.

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