for Washington, the reduced fighting pace is expected to last several months

19:26 ET. Only 25% of Russians still favor war.

According to the British Ministry of Defence, support for the offensive in Ukraine is in free fall in Russia.

A survey by the Federal Protection Services, consulted by an independent Russian media, shows that “55% of Russians are in favor of peace talks with Ukraine” and that only 25% of the population would still support the “special operation” launched by Vladimir Putin February last year.

In April 2022, almost 80% of Russians supported their president, according to British Defence, which believes that the partial mobilization imposed by Vladimir Putin last September is partly responsible for the reversal of Russian opinion.

(Re)see: in Russia, the mobilization is a failure

16:00 UTC. OPEC+ maintains its production quota.

On the eve of the entry into force of new sanctions targeting Russian crude oil, the representatives of the thirteen members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) led by Riyadh, and their ten allies led by Moscow, have agreed to stay the course decided in October a reduction of two million barrels per day until the end of 2023

(Re)read: oil: OPEC+ chooses the status quo in an unstable context

The much-anticipated decision was made after a quick meeting by video conference. This status quo is mainly justified by “uncertainty about the impact on Russian crude oil production” of the new set of sanctions, commented for AFP Giovanni Stauvono, analyst at UBS. Russia is up against the price cap on its oil that the EU, G7 and Australia plan to impose on Monday “or very soon after”.

11:16 GMT. More than 500 localities still without electricity in Ukraine.

More than 500 Ukrainian localities are still without electricity after Russian strikes in recent weeks have widely damaged the national power grid, an Interior Ministry official said.

“The enemy continues to attack critical infrastructure in the country. Currently, 507 locations in eight regions of our country are cut off from power supply.”first deputy interior minister Yevgeniy Yenin told Ukrainian television.

(Re)see: Ukraine: no electricity at the start of winter

In details, “Kharkiv region is the most affected, where 112 villages are isolated; in Donetsk and Kherson regions: more than 90; Mykolaiv region: 82; Zaporizhia region: 76; Luhansk region: 43”he specified.

On Saturday, Ukrainian authorities again urged civilians to hold on despite worsening living conditions. The prospect of new Russian strikes on the Ukrainian energy grid is raising fears of a particularly complicated winter for the civilian population and a new wave of refugees from the country.

10:45 UT. For Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, it is necessary “calm Zelensky”.

Former sovereigntist presidential candidate Nicolas Dupont-Aignan believes it is time “make peace” between Ukraine and Russia and “calm Zelensky”the Ukrainian president whose goal would be “to be the instrument of the destruction of Russia”.

“I think the fight today is running”said the president of the Debout la France party on stage at the big meeting (Europe 1 / Les Echos / Cnews). “Gaullian France should distance itself and have a refereeing position. Because Volodymyr Zelensky’s goal is no longer to defend Ukraine, it is, by sacrificing its people, to be the instrument of the destruction of Russia. And this is a very serious mistake.”pleaded Nicolas Dupont-Aignan.

(Re)read: portrait: Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, sovereignism, Gaullism and staging

Assuring that in this conflict which began in February, “wrong is much more shared than we say”confirmed the representative of Essonne that it was “the moment to avoid Europe’s suicide”. “Now is the time to make peace, find a compromise between the two and appease Zelensky”he insisted.

“I in no way legitimize Russian aggression”he nuanced further. “I’m just saying that today the two forces are running out, and Europe is sinking with them”, He continued. For Nicolas Dupont-Aignan, it is now necessary “Absolutely stop economic sanctions, stop arms deliveries in exchange for a ceasefire and we will go to the negotiating table”.

07:20 GMT. The United States expects the reduced pace of combat to continue in the coming months.

US intelligence chief Avril Haines said that despite attacks on Ukraine’s power grid and other critical winter infrastructure, she sees no sign of a weakening of Ukrainian will to resist and expects the reduced pace of fighting to continue in the coming months.

“We are already seeing some kind of slowdown in the conflict…and we expect that in the coming months”, April Haines told the Reagan National Defense Forum in California. She added that the Ukrainian and Russian militaries would try to rearm and resupply to prepare for a counteroffensive after winter.

(Re)read: Ukraine: the risk of war in winter

On what that would look like, she added: “We’re actually quite skeptical that the Russians will be ready to do this. I think more optimistic for the Ukrainians in this time frame.”. Asked about the effects of Russian attacks on Ukraine’s power grid and other civilian infrastructure, Avril Haines said Moscow’s goal was in part to undermine Ukrainians’ will to resist.

06:00 GMT. OPEC+ oil producers are expected to err on the side of Sunday and maintain current cuts.

OPEC + oil producers are expected to choose caution on Sunday and maintain the current cuts on the eve of the entry into force of new sanctions against Moscow, pillar with Riyadh in the alliance.

The representatives of the thirteen members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), led by Riyadh, and their ten allies led by Moscow, will meet at 11:00 GMT in an electric atmosphere.

(Re)see: Europe: what will the Russian oil price cap change?

Russia is up against the price cap on its oil that the EU, G7 and Australia plan to impose on Monday “or very soon after”. It is also on this day that the EU’s embargo on Russian crude oil transported by sea begins, which will eliminate two-thirds of its purchases in Moscow. The purpose of these measures: to deprive Moscow of the means to finance the war in Ukraine.

05:56 GMT. Emmanuel Macron says the West should consider a Russian guarantee.

The West should think about how to meet Russia’s need for security guarantees if President Vladimir Putin accepts talks to end the war in Ukraine, French President Emmanuel Macron has said.

Emmanuel Macron said Europe must respond to Putin’s fears “NATO comes to its doors” and deploying weapons that could threaten Russia as Europe prepares its future security architecture.

(Re)read: Macron and Biden will find a way out of Ukraine together

02:27 GMT. The US Defense Secretary accuses Russia of “deliberate cruelty” in Ukraine.

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin accuses Russia of “deliberate cruelty” in its war in Ukraine, claiming Moscow was deliberately targeting civilians.

“With Deliberate Cruelty, Russia Targets Civilians and Civilians”Lloyd Austin said at the Reagan National Defense Forum in Simi Valley, California. “Russian attacks have killed children, destroyed schools and destroyed hospitals”he declared.

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