LIVE: Day 282 of Russian aggression against Ukraine

Ukrainian servicemen pictured near the frontline town of Bakhmut, in Donetsk region, Ukraine, December 2, 2022. Photo: PAP/EPA/ROMAN PILIPEY

According to the Institute for the Study of War “Russian forces continued to conduct defensive measures and move personnel on the east bank of the Dnipro River in Kherson Oblast.” Meanwhile, European countries continue to send military aid to Ukraine, with Italy recently extending the term of arms supplies, including anti-aircraft systems and Lithuania sending 25 thousand sets of winter clothing for the military.

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U.S. President Joe Biden is not intending to speak to Russian strongman Vladimir Putin right now, the White House said on Friday, a day after Biden said he was willing to talk if Putin was looking for a way to end the war.

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Former U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, who exposed the scale of secret surveillance by the National Security Agency (NSA), has sworn an oath of allegiance to Russia and received a Russian passport, TASS reported on Friday.

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The United States has designated China, Iran and Russia among other nations as “countries of particular concern” under the Religious Freedom Act, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said on Friday.

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Poland has agreed to the European Union's deal for a USD 60 per barrel price cap on Russian seaborne oil, allowing the EU to move forward with formally approving the deal over the weekend, Poland's Ambassador to the EU Andrzej Sadoś said on Friday.

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American detainee Paul Whelan phoned his parents from Russia early on Friday, his brother said, the first contact since a period of silence last week that spurred the White House to express concern.

Whelan, a former U.S. Marine detained in Russia since 2018 and convicted on espionage charges in 2020, had been transferred to the hospital prison, his brother, David Whelan, said in a statement.

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Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Friday that he expects a “clear picture” on the war in Ukraine by spring, as shelling and clashes continued and the Kremlin said Russian President Vladimir Putin was open to negotiations.

“Now Ukraine is advancing on the ground, retaking some of their occupied territories. But Russia in return is deliberately targeting civilian infrastructure. So life is getting difficult for Ukrainians particularly, and for all of us,” Cavusoglu said at a forum in Rome.

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