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Facts About Ukraine Crisis: Russian Baltic Fleet Receives New Steregushchiy-Class Corvette

KALININGRAD REGION, RUSSIA - APRIL 29, 2021: The Russian Navy Project 20380 corvette Stoiky is seen off Baltiysk, Russia on its return from an overseas mission. The corvette Stoiky fulfilled tasks in the Indian Ocean in 2021. Vitaly Nevar/TASS–осси€. Ѕалтийск.  орвет "—тойкий" во врем€ возвращени€ из дальнего похода в составе отр€да кораблей Ѕалтийского флота в Ѕалтийском проливе. ¬италий Ќевар/“ј——

The following are the latest developments related to the Ukraine crisis:

The Russian Baltic Fleet has received a new Project 20380 Steregushchiy-class corvette dubbed “Mercury,” reported the press service of the Defense Ministry of Russia on Saturday.

According to Nikolai Yevmenov, Commander-in-Chief of the Russian Navy, the combination of high seaworthiness and the ability to be equipped with modern weapons allows the corvette to effectively operate as part of a swarm or individually to protect Russia’s national interests in oceans and marine areas.

Project 20380 multipurpose corvettes are designed to detect and destroy enemy submarines and surface ships, ensure landings and solve various tasks in near-sea zones. They are equipped with artillery, anti-missile, anti-submarine, sonar and radar systems, and a deck for the Ka-27 helicopter.

“Mercury” is the fifth project 20380 corvette built at Severnaya Verf Shipyard. The previous four ships of the series are already in service in the Russian Baltic Fleet.

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The United States Ambassador to South Africa, Reuben E. Brigety, has apologized to the South African government and people for his allegations that the country sold weapons to Russia, according to South Africa’s Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO).

DIRCO expressed the South African government’s utter displeasure with his conduct and statements, the department said in a statement issued on Friday.

“Following today’s meeting, Ambassador Reuben E. Brigety admitted that he crossed the line and apologized unreservedly to the government and the people of South Africa,” the statement said.

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Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said that Kiev stands ready to discuss peace initiatives of other countries on ending the Russia-Ukraine conflict if certain conditions are met, the government-run Ukrinform news agency reported Friday.

“If you want to come up with your own formula or initiative, we are ready to discuss it if it respects two principles: first, your initiative should not suggest territorial concessions of Ukraine to Russia; second, your initiative should not lead to frozen conflict instead of peace,” Kuleba said.

The minister said that Ukraine appreciates every effort to help end the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

At the same time, he emphasized that Kiev considers the 10-point peace plan by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky as the best way to end the conflict.

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Oleksiy Danilov, secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, said that his country is seeking to end the conflict with Russia by winter, the RBC-Ukraine media outlet reported Friday.

“By winter we want to completely end the war,” Danilov said.

At the same time, the official emphasized that Ukraine will continue its military operations until it takes control of all territories captured by Russia.

He noted that the Ukrainian forces may carry out one or several counteroffensives against the Russian forces.

Earlier this week, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that Ukraine needs more time to launch a counteroffensive against Russia as the military forces await more aid.