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The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain

For a world without Nazism

by our European Affairs correspondent

RUSSIAN forces are working to expand their control in the Kiev region from the eastern and western directions to the Ukrainian capital whilst concentrating their efforts to assist the Donetsk and Lugansk militias in their offensive to drive the Ukrainians out of the areas of western Donbas that the Kiev regime still occupies. In Moscow, over 200,000 people gathered at Moscow’s Luzhini Stadium to hear President Putin say that Russia will prevail.

“We know what we need to do, how to do it and at what cost. And we will absolutely accomplish all of our plans,” Putin told the cheering crowds from a stage decked out with slogans such as “For a world without Nazism” and “For our president”.

On the diplomatic front the Ukrainian leader, Volodymyr Zelensky, is repeatedly calling for an immediate cease-fire and face-to-face talks with Vladimir Putin. But the Kremlin says this will only occur if the Ukrainians first accept the Kremlin’s minimum demands.

Nevertheless, the head of the United Nations was upbeat this week. Elements of diplomatic progress can be seen on several key issues in the situation around Ukraine, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Tuesday. “From my outreach with various actors, elements of diplomatic progress are coming into view on several key issues,” Guterres said.

“There is enough on the table to cease hostilities – now… and seriously negotiate – now,” he said. The UN secretary-general expressed confidence that the conflict could be ended only through negotiations. “This war is unwinnable. Sooner or later, it will have to move from the battlefield to the peace table. This is inevitable.”

Meanwhile Russian and Ukrainian negotiating teams are maintaining daily online contact, although they have achieved little apart from the extension of humanitarian corridors to allow civilians in besieged Ukrainian cities to escape the fighting. At the same, time Israel and Turkey are acting as go-betweens and the European Union has also urged China to step in as a mediator.

Russian warplanes and missiles continue to target Ukrainian and foreign mercenary military camps with impunity whilst their troops surround and isolate the major cities in central Ukraine in what the Russians call a “tactical pause”.

Although the Ukrainians are using residential areas and civilians as ‘human shields’ to deploy their artillery systems and conduct massive fire on Russian positions, the Russians have confined their response to precision artillery and air strikes on Ukrainian units hiding in the besieged cities. Meanwhile fierce fighting continues on the streets of Mariupol as Russian and Donbas forces push into the centre of the strategic Black Sea port to mop up the last pockets of fascist resistance.

Behind the lines known leftists are being rounded-up by the police and the fascist militias whilst the puppet regime imposes martial law and blanket censorship in the territories it controls. The Zelensky regime has banned the remaining opposition parties, claiming they had alleged links with Russia, and shut down all independent TV channels. The 11 parties that have been banned include the Opposition Platform for Life, which has 39 seats in the 450-strong Ukrainian parliament, along with 10 other smaller social-democratic movements that were opposed to joining NATO and the European Union.

But in the liberated areas of the Donbas people are being assured of their rights. The Lugansk People’s Republic authorities will not engage in repression and will not persecute anyone on the territories of the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) liberated from Kiev security forces, LPR head Leonid Pasechnik said on Wednesday during a meeting with the heads of administrations of the liberated districts.

“I repeat once again: there will be no repression, no persecution, no bullying. We bring peace and calm,” Pasechnik said.

He said that the main task of the authorities is “to ensure the transition to a peaceful life as quickly as possible and to ensure the most comfortable living conditions in the liberated territories”.