© Reuters. Ukrainian national flag is seen through the window of an apartment destroyed during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in the town of Borodianka, in Kyiv region, Ukraine May 13, 2022. REUTERS/Vladyslav Musiienko
(Reuters) – Russia pressed for control of Ukraine’s Donbas region, claiming victory in the months-long battle for Mariupol’s steel plant and launching a major offensive on the remaining Ukrainian-held territory in the province of Luhansk.
* Russia’s defence ministry said the last group of Ukrainian forces holed up in Mariupol’s Azovstal steel works had surrendered, marking an end to a weeks-long attack that left the city in ruins.
* The commander of Ukraine’s Azov Regiment said in a video that civilians and heavily wounded fighters had been evacuated from Mariupol’s Azovstal steelworks, giving no further clue about the fate of the rest of its defenders.
* The Pentagon said there were no indications Russia had used laser weaponry in Ukraine, following claims by Moscow that it was fielding a new generation of powerful lasers there to strike enemy drones.
* Russia’s President Putin said the number of cyber attacks on Russia by foreign “state structures” had increased several times over and Russia must bolster its cyber defences.
* Ukrainian President Zelenskiy proposed a formal deal with the country’s allies to secure Russian compensation for the damage its forces have caused during the war.
* Finance ministers and central bank governors of the Group of Seven wealthy democracies said they have mobilised $19.8 billion for Ukraine and pledged to give more if needed.
* Turkish President Erdogan said he would speak to Finland on Saturday, while maintaining his opposition to Finnish and Swedish NATO membership bids over their history of hosting members of groups that Ankara deems terrorists.
* Russia rushed forward two payments on its international debt in its latest attempt to stave off a default that has looked on cards since its invasion of Ukraine.
* Seizing Russian state assets to help finance the rebuilding of Ukraine remains a possibility, Germany’s Finance Minister said, but he added that no decision had been taken at a meeting with his G7 counterparts.