politics

Russia Reportedly Violates Another Ceasefire as Civilians Flee; U.S. Says Up to 4,000 of Putin's Soldiers Have Been Killed

Aris Messinis | Afp | Getty Images

This is CNBC'S live blog covering developments in the Russia-Ukraine war. See blow for the latest updates.

Civilian casualties continue to rise in Ukraine amid continuous Russian attacks on cities across the country. But Ukraine's armed forces said Tuesday that the pace of Russia's invasion has "slowed significantly."

Russian forces disrupted humanitarian escape corridors established around the cities of Mariupol and Sumy, according to the U.K. Defence Ministry. That would mark the third consecutive day that Vladimir Putin's forces have broken their own supposed cease-fire agreements.

The latest breach comes after the U.N. called for safe passages to be established in Ukraine so civilians can leave.

Meanwhile, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak threatened to cut off gas supply to Europe if governments sanction energy imports, warning that it could lead to oil prices surging above $300 a barrel.

U.S. President Joe Biden said the nation plans to ban imports of Russian oil, a major escalation in the international response to Moscow's aggression.

Russian troops violate another ceasefire that was supposed to let civilians escape, UK says

Russian forces reportedly inflicted shelling and small arms fire on escape corridors that were designed to let Ukrainian civilians escape the cities of Mariupol and Sumy.

The U.K. Ministry of Defence said in an intelligence update that violence marks the third consecutive day that Russian forces have violated their own supposed cease-fire agreements.

Despite the dangers, the ministry said it is likely that some civilians have managed to escape the besieged cities.

"Those civilians forced to remain continue to suffer from shortages of power, food and water exacerbated by heavy Russian shelling," the ministry said.

—Ted Kemp

Fitch downgrades Russia's debt, saying default was imminent

Fitch on March 8, 2022 downgraded Russia's sovereign rating by six notches further into the junk territory to 'C' from 'B', saying a default is imminent as sanctions and trade restrictions have undermined its willingness to service debt.
Fitch on March 8, 2022 downgraded Russia's sovereign rating by six notches further into the junk territory to 'C' from 'B', saying a default is imminent as sanctions and trade restrictions have undermined its willingness to service debt.

Fitch downgraded Russia's sovereign rating by six notches further into the junk territory to 'C' from 'B', saying a default is imminent as sanctions and trade restrictions have undermined its willingness to service debt.

The country's financial markets have been thrown into turmoil by Western sanctions after it invaded Ukraine, raising significant concerns over its ability and willingness to service debt.

The rating firm pointed to Presidential decree, which could potentially force a redenomination of foreign-currency sovereign debt payments into local currency for creditors in specified countries.

"‍Further ratcheting up of sanctions and proposals that could limit trade in energy increase probability of a policy response by Russia that includes at least selective non-payment of its sovereign debt obligations," the ratings agency said in a statement.

— Reuters

Ukrainian refugees arrive in Poland

After taking trains from Ukraine, refugees arrive and wait for safe passage in Poland.

Passengers who arrived from Ukraine are seen at the main railway station in Krakow, Poland on March 8, 2022.
Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Passengers who arrived from Ukraine are seen at the main railway station in Krakow, Poland on March 8, 2022.
A woman seen carrying her baby at the Central Train Station in Warsaw, Poland, March 8, 2022.
Sopa Images | Lightrocket | Getty Images
A woman seen carrying her baby at the Central Train Station in Warsaw, Poland, March 8, 2022.
A young girl is seen waiting with her luggage at the Warsaw East railway station in Warsaw, Poland on March, 8, 2022.
Nurphoto | Getty Images
A young girl is seen waiting with her luggage at the Warsaw East railway station in Warsaw, Poland on March, 8, 2022.
A woman greets her friend from Kiev after he disembarked from a train arriving from Warsaw, carrying mostly people fleeing the war in Ukraine, at Berlin's central railway station on March 8, 2022.
John Macdougall | AFP | Getty Images
A woman greets her friend from Kiev after he disembarked from a train arriving from Warsaw, carrying mostly people fleeing the war in Ukraine, at Berlin's central railway station on March 8, 2022.
Children who fled the war in Ukraine rests inside a temporary refugee shelter that was an abandoned TESCO supermarket after being transported from the Polish Ukrainian border on March 08, 2022 in Przemysl, Poland.
Omar Marques | Getty Images
Children who fled the war in Ukraine rests inside a temporary refugee shelter that was an abandoned TESCO supermarket after being transported from the Polish Ukrainian border on March 08, 2022 in Przemysl, Poland.

U.S. and allies are discussing more releases of oil reserves amid supply, price concerns, Biden Energy secretary says

The Biden administration is "in active discussions" with allies about releasing more oil from strategic petroleum reserves, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm told CNBC.

Just a week earlier, the 31 members of the International Energy Agency agreed to tap 60 million barrels of oil from their emergency reserves in an effort to ease concerns about energy supplies and price hikes following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

"I think there's a sense of urgency about this" Granholm said on "Closing Bell." "We are in active discussions with our allies ... and we will be having further discussions" both within the U.S. government and with its partners, the Cabinet secretary said.

Kevin Breuninger

Why McDonald's store closures in Russia are significant

British Parliament gives Ukraine President Zelenskyy standing ovation in video address

'We don't know' how long high gas prices will last, Biden Energy secretary says

There's no telling how high U.S. gas prices will go, or how long they will stay at record levels, Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm told CNBC.

"We don't know, of course. We don't know how long Putin is going to terrorize Ukraine. We do not know how long his war will last. But let's be clear, these increases are because of Vladimir Putin," Granholm said when asked on "Closing Bell" about the sky-high prices.

"This is Putin's war. These are Putin's increases. And we cannot allow it to stand," she said.

"We're fortunate that we are not being asked to sacrifice our sons and daughters to go and fight this war, but we may have to take on other sacrifices," Granholm said. "And it makes me so proud that so many Americans are willing to pay a little bit more at the pump in order to accelerate the end of this war."

Kevin Breuninger

Flight simulator giant CAE stops offering pilot training, simulator service for Russian airlines

Flight-simulator giant CAE said it has suspended all of its services and training for Russian airlines and pilots, the latest aviation company to exit Russia after its attack on Ukraine.

"CAE is saddened by the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, and in support of its people, CAE has ceased to offer training services to pilots of Russian airlines as well as corporate and cargo operators in its training network," the Montreal-based company said. "The company has also ceased to sell and service simulators for Russian airlines as well as healthcare distributors."

Russia's aviation system has grown isolated isolated since the country's Ukraine invasion, as Western companies like Airbus and Boeing pull out of the country and flight restrictions prevent flights to and from Russia. Russian airlines have ceased international flights, however, making it increasingly difficult for lessors to repossess aircraft.

— Leslie Josephs

Bumble pulls widely popular dating app Badoo from Russia, Belarus

The display outside the Nasdaq MarketSite is pictured as the dating app operator Bumble Inc. (BMBL) made its debut on the Nasdaq stock exchange during the company's IPO in New York City, New York, U.S., February 11, 2021.
Mike Segar | Reuters
The display outside the Nasdaq MarketSite is pictured as the dating app operator Bumble Inc. (BMBL) made its debut on the Nasdaq stock exchange during the company's IPO in New York City, New York, U.S., February 11, 2021.

Bumble has no love for Russia.

The popular dating app company is ceasing operations in Russia and removing all of its apps from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store in Russia and Belarus, the company said in its fourth-quarter earnings statement.

The company has close ties to Russia and Ukraine, which account for about 15% of total daily active users of Bumble-owned dating app Badoo, according to JPMorgan. Roughly 20% of its global workforce, about 130 employees, are also located in Moscow, the company's previously said.

That exposure hit investors hard with a 30% drop in the company's shares since Russia began its assault on Ukraine on Feb. 24.

Bumble estimates a $20 million hit to revenue from Russia, Ukraine and Belarus in 2022.

— Jessica Bursztynsky

NSA working to identify and defeat potential Russian cyberattacks

National Security Agency Director Gen. Paul Nakasone testifies before a House (Select) Intelligence Committee hearing on diversity in the intelligence community, on Capitol Hill in Washington, October 27, 2021.
Elizabeth Frantz | Reuters
National Security Agency Director Gen. Paul Nakasone testifies before a House (Select) Intelligence Committee hearing on diversity in the intelligence community, on Capitol Hill in Washington, October 27, 2021.

National Security Agency Director Gen. Paul Nakasone told lawmakers Tuesday that U.S. intelligence agencies are working to identify and defeat Russian cyberattacks if the Kremlin retaliates against the West.

"We're very, very focused on ransomware actors that might conduct attacks against our allies or our nation and very, very focused on some type of cyber activity that's designed for perhaps Ukraine that spreads more broadly into other countries," Nakasone said before the House Intelligence Committee.

Nakasone also warned that a potential Russian cyberattack against U.S. critical infrastructure could have a "spillover effect" if it is not contained.

"Even if the Russians think they have carefully calibrated some form of malicious cyberactivity against our critical infrastructure, the reality is they've shown a history of not being able to kind of manage the effects of it as well as they intend," Nakasone said.

 — Amanda Macias

Love and war in Ukraine

Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena listen to a priest at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict at a Ukraine checkpoint in unknown location.

Photos provided by the Press service of the National Guard of Ukraine.

Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena listen to a priest at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict, at a checkpoint in unknown location, in Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 8, 2022.
National Guard of Ukraine | Reuters
Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena listen to a priest at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict, at a checkpoint in unknown location, in Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 8, 2022.
Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena listen to a priest at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict, at a checkpoint in unknown location, in Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 8, 2022.
National Guard of Ukraine | Reuters
Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena listen to a priest at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict, at a checkpoint in unknown location, in Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 8, 2022.
Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena react at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict, at a checkpoint in unknown location, in Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 8, 2022.
National Guard of Ukraine | Reuters
Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena react at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict, at a checkpoint in unknown location, in Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 8, 2022.
Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena kiss at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict, at a checkpoint in unknown location, in Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 8, 2022.
National Guard of Ukraine | Reuters
Members of the National Guard of Ukraine Oleksandr and Olena kiss at their wedding during Ukraine-Russia conflict, at a checkpoint in unknown location, in Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 8, 2022.

U.S. and France vow to impose additional costs on Putin

French President Emmanuel Macron accompanies U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken after a meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, June 25, 2021.
Sarah Meyssonnier | Reuters
French President Emmanuel Macron accompanies U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken after a meeting at the Elysee Palace in Paris, France, June 25, 2021.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken met with French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris to discuss additional ways for the transatlantic allies to "impose significant costs on President Putin and his associates for as long as they continue their war of choice in Ukraine."

'The Secretary and President compared notes on ongoing diplomacy to diminish the violence and bring the Kremlin's war to a halt," according to a summary of the meeting.

Blinken's discussions at Elysee Palace wrap a week of meetings with allies in Belgium, Poland, Moldova, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia.

 — Amanda Macias

PepsiCo is reportedly exploring options for its Russian division

Bottles of Pepsi are pictured at a grocery store in Pasadena, California.
Mario Anzuoni | Reuters
Bottles of Pepsi are pictured at a grocery store in Pasadena, California.

PepsiCo is exploring options for its Russian business, including writing off the value of the unit, the Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.

Pepsi has deep ties to Russia, dating back to when it introduced cola to the Soviet Union in the mid-1970s during the Cold War. The company also operates a large dairy business in Russia. Citing people familiar with the matter, the newspaper reported that Pepsi is reluctant to shutter its Russian operations because tens of thousands of Russians depend on Pepsi for jobs and daily essentials.

— Amelia Lucas

Zelenskyy vows to fight Russia 'whatever the cost' in speech to U.K. Parliament

Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy drew a standing ovation from U.K. lawmakers Tuesday after a defiant speech that nodded to Britain's World War II leader Winston Churchill.

"We will fight till the end at sea, in the air. We will continue fighting for our land, whatever the cost," he said in remarks delivered by video in the House of Commons.

In a separate tweeted statement, he also thanked U.S. President Joe Biden for "striking in the heart of [Vladimir] Putin's war machine" by banning oil, natural gas and coal imports from Russia.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addresses MPs in the House of Commons via videolink on the latest situation in Ukraine. Picture date: Tuesday March 8, 2022.
House Of Commons | Pa Images | Getty Images
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addresses MPs in the House of Commons via videolink on the latest situation in Ukraine. Picture date: Tuesday March 8, 2022.

— Jacob Pramuk

Poland ready to hand over aging fighter jets in exchange for used U.S. aircraft

Two Polish MiG-29s sit at an airbase in Malbork, Poland, in this file photo from August 2021.
Anadolu Agency | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Two Polish MiG-29s sit at an airbase in Malbork, Poland, in this file photo from August 2021.

The Polish Air Force will immediately send its aging Russian MiG-29 fighter jets to Ramstein Air Base in Germany where the United States will assume control of the fleet.

In exchange, Poland requested that the U.S. send "used aircraft with corresponding operational capabilities," the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs wrote in a statement without elaborating on a specific U.S. aircraft.

"The Polish Government also requests other NATO Allies – owners of MIG-29 jets – to act in the same vein," the statement added.

 — Amanda Macias

McDonald's halts operations in Russia after staying quiet on war

McDonald's said it would halt operations in Russia, nearly two weeks after Vladimir Putin launched his invasion of Ukraine.

The company, which makes 9% of its revenue from Russia, had taken heat for staying silent on the war. On Tuesday, its CEO said McDonald's would keep paying its 62,000 employees in the country even as it shuts down its 850 stores there until further notice.

"In the thirty-plus years that McDonald's has operated in Russia, we've become an essential part of the 850 communities in which we operate," CEO Chris Kempczinski wrote in the announcement. "At the same time, our values mean we cannot ignore the needless human suffering unfolding in Ukraine."

– Mike Calia

U.S. says about 95% of Kremlin's combat power remains intact

This general view shows destroyed Russian armored vehicles in the city of Bucha, west of Kyiv, on March 4, 2022.
Aris Messinis | AFP | Getty Images
This general view shows destroyed Russian armored vehicles in the city of Bucha, west of Kyiv, on March 4, 2022.

A U.S. senior Defense official said about 95% of the Kremlin's combat power remains intact after nearly two weeks at war in Ukraine.

"Mr. Putin still has the vast majority of tactical surface-to-air capability available to him," the official said.

The official added that nearly 100% of the troops that were once staged along Ukraine's border are now fighting inside the country and slowly advancing on Kyiv in four lines of effort.

"We assess that nearly, not all, but nearly 100% of the forces that they had amassed are inside the country now and clearly they are inside the country with the intent to move along these multiple lines of access," the official said.

The official added that the U.S. has no indications that Russian President Vladimir Putin is pulling troops from other parts of Russia to fight in Ukraine.

 — Amanda Macias

Destruction in Kharkiv

Photos show destroyed buildings in Kharkiv a day after shelling by Russian forces.

A woman walks by apartment building damaged after shelling the day before in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 8, 2022.
Sergey Bobok | AFP | Getty Images
A woman walks by apartment building damaged after shelling the day before in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 8, 2022.
This picture shows an apartment building damaged after shelling the day before in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 8, 2022.
Sergey Bobok | AFP | Getty Images
This picture shows an apartment building damaged after shelling the day before in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 8, 2022.
This picture shows an apartment destroyed after shelling the day before in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 8, 2022.
Sergey Bobok | AFP | Getty Images
This picture shows an apartment destroyed after shelling the day before in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 8, 2022.
A member of the Ukrainian Territorial Defence Forces looks at destructions following a shelling in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 8, 2022.
Sergey Bobok | AFP | Getty Images
A member of the Ukrainian Territorial Defence Forces looks at destructions following a shelling in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 8, 2022.

Russian forces launch more than 670 missiles since start of invasion

A Ukrainian serviceman looks at destructions following a shelling in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 7, 2022.
Sergey Bobok | AFP | Getty Images
A Ukrainian serviceman looks at destructions following a shelling in Ukraine's second-biggest city of Kharkiv on March 7, 2022.

A senior U.S. Defense official said Tuesday that Russian forces have intensified missile strikes against Ukraine in the last 24 hours.

The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity in order to share new U.S. details of the Kremlin's campaign, said that the Russians have fired nearly 670 missiles since the invasion began. In the past 24 hours, the U.S. observed about 50 Russian missile launches.

The majority of the missiles are being launched from either inside Russia or from mobile platforms inside of Ukraine, according to the U.S. Defense official. Approximately 70 missiles have been fired from inside Belarus and less than 10 missiles have been launched from naval assets in the Black Sea.

 — Amanda Macias

Russian forces are about 12 miles from Kyiv's city center, U.S. defense official says

Ukrainian soldiers patrol in front of the Independence Monument during Russian attacks in Kyiv, Ukraine on March 03, 2022.
Aytac Unal/ | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Ukrainian soldiers patrol in front of the Independence Monument during Russian attacks in Kyiv, Ukraine on March 03, 2022.

A senior U.S. defense official said Russian forces are pursuing four different advances on Kyiv and are approximately 12 miles from the city center.

The official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said that Russian troop movements deeper into Ukraine have slowed.

"They still seem to be plagued by logistics and sustainment challenges," explained the official, adding that the Russians are facing substantial fuel and food shortages.

"We have every expectation that they will try to overcome those challenges," the official added.

 — Amanda Macias

U.S. warns that Kyiv could run out of food and water in 14 days if Russians cut off supplies

A woman crosses the street as anti-tank constructions are seen in central Kyiv, Ukraine March 7, 2022.
Gleb Garanich | Reuters
A woman crosses the street as anti-tank constructions are seen in central Kyiv, Ukraine March 7, 2022.

The U.S. intelligence community assesses that if Russian forces cut off food and water supplies to Kyiv, people in the Ukrainian capital could run out of supplies in about 14 days.

"I don't have a specific number for days of supply that the population has but with supplies being cut off it will become somewhat desperate. I would say about 10 days to two weeks," said Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. Scott Berrier before the House Intelligence Committee's hearing on "Worldwide Threats."

Shelves in a supermarket stand empty, following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Skvyra near Kyiv, Ukraine, March 4, 2022. 
Thomas Peter | Reuters
Shelves in a supermarket stand empty, following Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Skvyra near Kyiv, Ukraine, March 4, 2022. 

 — Amanda Macias

Biden says U.S. gas prices could rise after Russia oil import ban

High gas prices are displayed at a Shell station on March 7, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.
Mario Tama | Getty Images News | Getty Images
High gas prices are displayed at a Shell station on March 7, 2022 in Los Angeles, California.

President Joe Biden said his administration's move to ban Russian oil imports could further squeeze consumers who face high prices at the gas pump.

"With this action, it's going to go up further," he said Tuesday of fuel costs in the U.S.

As he warned of possible price increases, Biden pointed to the White House's decision to release oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve to increase supply and blunt cost increases for consumers. Oil prices have climbed since Russia, a major producer, invaded Ukraine last month.

The U.K. and EU on Tuesday announced separate plans to wean themselves off of Russian energy.

— Jacob Pramuk

Biden announces U.S. ban on Russian imports

A general view of oil tanks in the Transneft-Kozmino Port near the far eastern town of Nakhodka, Russia.
Yuri Maltsev | Reuters
A general view of oil tanks in the Transneft-Kozmino Port near the far eastern town of Nakhodka, Russia.

President Joe Biden announced U.S. plans to ban imports of Russian oil, a major escalation in the international response to Moscow's invasion of Ukraine.

The move came as Western-allied nations work to sever Moscow from the global economy to punish Russian President Vladimir Putin for his unprovoked aggression.

"Today I am announcing the United States is targeting the main artery of Russia's economy. We're banning all imports of Russian oil and gas and energy," Biden said at the White House. "That means Russian oil will no longer be acceptable at U.S. ports and the American people will deal another powerful blow to Putin's war machine."

"This is a step we're taking to inflict further pain on Putin," Biden said.

— Kevin Breuninger

New York Times pulls journalists from Russia

The New York Times is pulling its journalists from Russia as Vladimir Putin's government cracks down on media outlets that refuse to toe the Kremlin's line on the war in Ukraine.

The decision was revealed in a tweet Tuesday from Times Deputy Managing Editor Clifford Levy, who shared an announcement from Michael Slackman, another top editor at the paper.

"Russian authorities are clamping down harder on news and free speech than at any time during President Vladimir V. Putin's 22 years in power, pushing through a law that effectively criminalizes independent news reporting about the war against Ukraine," Slackman wrote in a note to Times staff.

Russia's new media law threatens potential violators with as many as 15 years in prison. The Times' decision follows similar moves by other non-Russian media outlets.

The BBC, however, reversed its decision to cease reporting from inside Russia. "We will tell this crucial part of the story independently and impartially, adhering to the BBC's strict editorial standards," a representative for the UK outlet said. "The safety of our staff in Russia remains our number one priority."

Slackman vowed that the Times would continue its "live, robust coverage" of the invasion. "We have had a team of journalists in Ukraine and the region bearing witness to the unfolding conflict," he wrote.

– Mike Calia

Ukrainian servicemen laid to rest in Lviv

A joint funeral takes place at Saint's Peter and Paul Garrison Church for two Ukranian soldiers who died during recent fighting in Lviv, Ukraine.

The two servicemen, Victor, 44 who was killed in the Mykolaiv region and Ivan, 25, who was killed in the Zaporizhzhia region, were laid to rest at the Lychakiv Cemetery, surrounded by family, friends and colleagues.

Photos made by Dan Kitwood.

A procession takes place at Lychakiv cemetary during a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
Dan Kitwood | Getty Images
A procession takes place at Lychakiv cemetary during a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
A service takes place at Lychakiv cemetery during a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
Dan Kitwood | Getty Images
A service takes place at Lychakiv cemetery during a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
A service takes place at Lychakiv cemetery during a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
Dan Kitwood | Getty Images
A service takes place at Lychakiv cemetery during a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
Father of Ivan, Yuriy, pauses over his sons coffin during a service at Lychakiv cemetery during a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
Dan Kitwood | Getty Images
Father of Ivan, Yuriy, pauses over his sons coffin during a service at Lychakiv cemetery during a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
A woman stands besides two graves at Lychakiv cemetery after a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
Dan Kitwood | Getty Images
A woman stands besides two graves at Lychakiv cemetery after a joint funeral for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
A joint funeral takes place at 'Saint's Peter and Paul Garrison Church', for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.
Dan Kitwood | Getty Images
A joint funeral takes place at 'Saint's Peter and Paul Garrison Church', for two soldiers who died in the east of the country during recent fighting, on March 08, 2022 in Lviv, Ukraine.

Up to 4,000 Russian troops killed so far in Kremlin's war, U.S. intelligence says

Smoke rises from a Russian tank destroyed by the Ukrainian troops on the side of a road in Lugansk region on February 26, 2022.
Anatolii Stepanov | AFP | Getty Images
Smoke rises from a Russian tank destroyed by the Ukrainian troops on the side of a road in Lugansk region on February 26, 2022.

The U.S. intelligence community assesses that up to 4,000 Russian troops have been killed in the Kremlin's war in Ukraine.

The figure, which shared during an unclassified hearing with lawmakers, was presented by Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. Scott Berrier.

"With low confidence, somewhere between 2,000 and 4,000. That number comes from some intelligence sources but also open sources," Berrier said during testimony before the House Intelligence Committee's hearing on "Worldwide Threats."

 — Amanda Macias

— EDITOR'S NOTE: GRAPHIC CONTENT

The body of a Russian serviceman lies near destroyed Russian military vehicles on the roadside on the outskirts of Kharkiv on February 26, 2022, following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Sergey Bobok | AFP | Getty Images
The body of a Russian serviceman lies near destroyed Russian military vehicles on the roadside on the outskirts of Kharkiv on February 26, 2022, following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Fuel cost surge from Russia's invasion hits Alaska Airlines' schedule

An Alaska Airlines aircraft flies past the U.S. Capitol before landing at Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., January 24, 2022.
Joshua Roberts | Reuters
An Alaska Airlines aircraft flies past the U.S. Capitol before landing at Reagan National Airport in Arlington, Virginia, U.S., January 24, 2022.

Alaska Airlines is trimming its flights for the first half of the year to cope with a surge in fuel prices resulting from Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the first U.S. airline to alter its schedule as costs jump from the war.

The Seattle-based carrier says its capacity in the first half of the year will be down 3% to 5% from 2019, after forecasting flat-to-slightly bigger schedules in January. It said it expects to grow in the second half of the year but didn't provide more detail.

Other airlines could follow suit, but executives face a dilemma: fly more to capture revenue after two bruising years or reduce schedules to cut costs.

— Leslie Josephs

KFC owner Yum Brands suspends restaurant development in Russia

A sign walker outside a KFC fast food restaurant; the Russian government has extended the period off work with full pay until April 30 nationwide to counter the spread of the COVID-19 infection.
Artyom Geodakyan | TASS | Getty Images
A sign walker outside a KFC fast food restaurant; the Russian government has extended the period off work with full pay until April 30 nationwide to counter the spread of the COVID-19 infection.

KFC's parent company Yum Brands is suspending all investment and restaurant development in Russia.

The restaurant company will also redirect all profits from its existing Russian restaurants to humanitarian efforts. Yum's Russian footprint includes about 1,000 KFC locations and 50 Pizza Hut restaurants, nearly all of which are operated by franchisees.

"Like so many across the world, we are shocked and saddened by the tragic events unfolding in Ukraine," Yum said in a statement.

— Amelia Lucas

EU announces plan to reduce its dependency on Russian energy

On a display at a gas station, a liter of diesel costs 7.19 zloty. Refueling is also more expensive than ever in Poland, but still a lot cheaper than in neighboring Germany.
Patrick Pleul | Picture Alliance | Getty Images
On a display at a gas station, a liter of diesel costs 7.19 zloty. Refueling is also more expensive than ever in Poland, but still a lot cheaper than in neighboring Germany.

The European Union on Tuesday announced plans to reduce its dependency on Russian energy, amid Moscow's invasion of Ukraine, sky-high prices and a potential embargo of Russian crude.

The European Commission, the executive arm of the EU, wants to cease its buying of fossil fuels from Russia before 2030, pledging to reduce its purchases of Russian gas by two-thirds before the end of the year.

Read the full story here.

—Matt Clinch

Winter weather hits civilians as they continue to flee Irpin

Ukrainian civilians face winter conditions as they continue to flee the city of Irpin.

Civilians continue to flee from Irpin due to ongoing Russian attacks as snow falls in Irpin, Ukraine on March 08, 2022.
Emin Sansar | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Civilians continue to flee from Irpin due to ongoing Russian attacks as snow falls in Irpin, Ukraine on March 08, 2022.
Ukrainian soldiers help an elderly woman to cross a destroyed bridge as she evacuates the city of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on March 8, 2022.
Sergei Supinsky | AFP | Getty Images
Ukrainian soldiers help an elderly woman to cross a destroyed bridge as she evacuates the city of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on March 8, 2022.
People carry a wounded woman during the evacuation by civilians of the city of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on March 8, 2022.
Sergei Supinsky | AFP | Getty Images
People carry a wounded woman during the evacuation by civilians of the city of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on March 8, 2022.
Ukrainian soldiers help an elderly woman to cross a destroyed bridge as she evacuates the city of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on March 8, 2022.
Sergei Supinsky | AFP | Getty Images
Ukrainian soldiers help an elderly woman to cross a destroyed bridge as she evacuates the city of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on March 8, 2022.
Civilians continue to flee from Irpin due to ongoing Russian attacks as snow falls in Irpin, Ukraine on March 08, 2022.
Emin Sansar | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Civilians continue to flee from Irpin due to ongoing Russian attacks as snow falls in Irpin, Ukraine on March 08, 2022.
Civilians continue to flee from Irpin due to ongoing Russian attacks as snow falls in Irpin, Ukraine on March 08, 2022.
Emin Sansar | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images
Civilians continue to flee from Irpin due to ongoing Russian attacks as snow falls in Irpin, Ukraine on March 08, 2022.
A woman reacts as her relatives cross a destroyed bridge as they evacuate the city of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on March 8, 2022.
Sergei Supinsky | AFP | Getty Images
A woman reacts as her relatives cross a destroyed bridge as they evacuate the city of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, on March 8, 2022.

U.S. expected to announce ban on Russian oil as soon as today

Employees pass beneath pipes leading to oil storage tanks at the central processing plant for oil and gas at the Salym Petroleum Development oil fields near the Bazhenov shale formation in Salym, Russia.
Andrey Rudakov | Bloomberg | Getty Images
Employees pass beneath pipes leading to oil storage tanks at the central processing plant for oil and gas at the Salym Petroleum Development oil fields near the Bazhenov shale formation in Salym, Russia.

The U.S. is expected to announce as early as today that it will ban imports of Russian oil, a person familiar with the matter told CNBC.

The White House and the Department of Energy did not immediately respond to CNBC's requests for comment. But the White House on Tuesday morning updated President Joe Biden's schedule for the day to include an announcement of new U.S. actions intended to "hold Russia accountable for its unprovoked and unjustified war on Ukraine."

Biden will deliver those remarks from the White House at 10:45 a.m. ET, the updated schedule said.

Kevin Breuninger

Blinken meets with French officials as U.S. pushes forward on Russian oil ban

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L) and French Foreign Affairs Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian hold a joint press conference at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Paris, on June 25, 2021.
Andrew Harnik | AFP | Getty Images
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (L) and French Foreign Affairs Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian hold a joint press conference at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Paris, on June 25, 2021.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken will meet with French President Emmanuel Macron and French Foreign Minister Yves Le Drian in Paris on Tuesday evening, as European Union governments debate whether to join the U.S. in banning Russian oil imports.

France, which depends on nuclear power for most of its energy needs, has yet to take a position on whether the 27-member bloc should ban Russian oil.

Blinken said Tuesday that President Joe Biden discussed a Russian oil ban in a Monday call with Macron, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

— Amanda Macias

UN says at least 1,207 civilian casualties in Ukraine so far

A secondary school building seen destroyed by Russian military attack.
Sopa Images | Lightrocket | Getty Images
A secondary school building seen destroyed by Russian military attack.

The United Nations says there have been at least 1,207 civilian casualties since Russia's invasion of Ukraine began on Feb. 24.

That includes 406 people killed and 801 injured — although the exact figures are likely to be much higher, according to Liz Throssell, spokesperson for the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Most civilian casualties were as a result of airstrikes and explosive weapons used by Russian forces, the U.N. said, with hundreds of residential buildings in several Ukrainian cities damaged or destroyed.

The latest figures say 12,700 people have been arbitrarily arrested for holding peaceful anti-war protests.

The U.N. said it was concerned by Russia's new criminal code amendments that impose prison terms of up to 15 years on those charged with spreading information deemed to be fake or discrediting Russian armed forces.

— Sam Meredith

China's Xi urges 'maximum restraint' in Ukraine, says Beijing 'pained' to see war in Europe

A video screen displays French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Chinese President Xi Jinping attending a video-conference to discuss the Ukraine crisis, at the Elysee Palace in Paris, on March 8, 2022.
Benoit Tessier | Afp | Getty Images
A video screen displays French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Chinese President Xi Jinping attending a video-conference to discuss the Ukraine crisis, at the Elysee Palace in Paris, on March 8, 2022.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has reportedly called for "maximum restraint" in Ukraine and says Beijing is "pained to see the flames of war reignited in Europe."

Speaking at a virtual meeting alongside French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Xi said the three countries should jointly support peace talks between Moscow and Kyiv.

His comments, reported by state broadcaster CCTV, were thought to be his strongest yet on Russia's onslaught of Ukraine.

China, an economic and strategic ally of Moscow, has not imposed any sanctions on Russia.

— Sam Meredith

Shell announces withdrawal from Russian oil and gas

A cyclist passes oil silos at the Royal Dutch Shell Pernis refinery in Rotterdam, Netherlands, on Tuesday, April 27, 2021.
Peter Boer | Bloomberg | Getty Images
A cyclist passes oil silos at the Royal Dutch Shell Pernis refinery in Rotterdam, Netherlands, on Tuesday, April 27, 2021.

Oil major Shell on Tuesday apologized for a buying a heavily discounted consignment of Russian oil last week, and announced it would gradually withdraw from its involvement in all Russian hydrocarbons.

"As an immediate first step, the company will stop all spot purchases of Russian crude oil. It will also shut its service stations, aviation fuels and lubricants operations in Russia," it said in a statement.

On Friday, Shell purchased 100,000 metric tons of flagship Urals crude from Russia. It was reportedly bought at a record discount, with many firms shunning Russian oil due to Moscow's unprovoked invasion of its neighbor. The purchase did not violate any Western sanctions.

— Matt Clinch

Child dies of dehydration as Russia ‘holds 300,000 civilians hostage in Mariupol,’ Ukraine says

A child has died of dehydration in the city of Mariupol, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Tuesday.

In his latest video address, the Ukrainian president said Mariupol had been cut off from vital supplies and utilities.  

"Mariupol was surrounded, blocked and specially depleted," he said, according to an NBC News translation. "The occupiers deliberately cut off communications and blocked the supply of food, cut off electricity. A child died of dehydration in the city."

Meanwhile, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Tuesday that 300,000 civilians were being held hostage in Mariupol by Russian forces.

Evacuation attempts were halted in Mariupol, a key port city in southeastern Ukraine, over the weekend, with Ukraine saying Russian forces had violated a cease-fire agreement by continuing to attack the city and the planned route out of it.  

— Chloe Taylor

London Metal Exchange suspends nickel trading after price surge

The London Metal Exchange suspended the trading of nickel on Tuesday after prices surged above $100,000 per ton.

The LME said in a statement that trading will be suspended for at least the remainder of the day.

The exchange said it had been monitoring the evolving situation in Russia and Ukraine and it was evident this had affected the nickel market, citing extreme price moves in Asian trading hours.

"The LME will actively plan for the reopening of the nickel market, and will announce the mechanics of this to the market as soon as possible" it added.

Three-month nickel on the LME briefly jumped to a record high above $100,000 a metric ton, before paring gains.

— Chloe Taylor

Footage shows civilian evacuations underway in Sumy

Kirll Timoshenko, an advisor to Ukraine's President Zelenskyy, shared footage on Tuesday of the evacuation of civilians from Sumy.

Sumy, a city in northeast Ukraine, has been the scene of intense attacks in recent days, with an airstrike killing 18 civilians, including two children, overnight.

Oleg Nikolenko, a spokesperson for Ukraine's Foreign Ministry, said Tuesday that a humanitarian corridor out of Sumy would be open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. local time to allow the evacuation of residents and foreign students.

— Chloe Taylor

2 million people have fled Ukraine, UN says

Alexandra, 12, holds her sister Esyea, 6, who cries as she waves at her mother Irina, while members of the Jewish community of Odessa board a bus to flee Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Odessa, Ukraine, March 7, 2022.
Alexandros Avramidis | Reuters
Alexandra, 12, holds her sister Esyea, 6, who cries as she waves at her mother Irina, while members of the Jewish community of Odessa board a bus to flee Russia's invasion of Ukraine, in Odessa, Ukraine, March 7, 2022.

Two million people have fled Ukraine, according to U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi.

— Chloe Taylor

Mayor of Irpin says Russians have threatened his life and demanded surrender

Abandoned strollers are pictured under a destroyed bridge as people walked across the collapsed concrete to flee Irpin, a northwest suburb of Kyiv, on March 7, 2022.
Dimitar Dilkoff | AFP | Getty Images
Abandoned strollers are pictured under a destroyed bridge as people walked across the collapsed concrete to flee Irpin, a northwest suburb of Kyiv, on March 7, 2022.

Alexander Markushin, the mayor of Irpin — a town on the outskirts of Kyiv — said Tuesday that Russian forces had contacted him to threaten his life and demand his surrender.

"Yesterday at 17:58, I received a message from the occupiers threatening my life and health," Markushin said, according to a translation.

He added that the message included demands for "the complete surrender of Irpin."

"I'm surprised that these monsters still haven't understood — Irpin doesn't give up, Irpin doesn't sell, Irpin fights," he said.

There has been intense fighting in Irpin over recent days. On Sunday, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russian troops had opened fire on civilians attempting to flee the town, resulting in the deaths of a family of four. "How many such families have died in Ukraine? We will not forgive. We will not forget," he said.

— Chloe Taylor

Russian state media says new cease-fire will see Ukrainian civilians evacuated to Russia

Smoke rise after shelling by Russian forces in Mariupol, Ukraine, Friday, March 4, 2022.
Evgeniy Maloletka | AP
Smoke rise after shelling by Russian forces in Mariupol, Ukraine, Friday, March 4, 2022.

The Russian military on Tuesday declared a fresh cease-fire in five Ukrainian cities, according to state-run media. But evacuation routes will lead to Russia.

News agency Interfax reported that evacuation routes would take civilians "from Kyiv, Chernihiv, Sumy, Kharkiv, Mariupol to Russia," citing Russia's National Defense Control Center.

On Monday, Russian plans for a cease-fire to allow civilian evacuations were rejected as "completely immoral" by Ukrainian officials, after it emerged that the evacuation routes Russia planned to open would lead to Russian or Belarusian territory.

It came after evacuation attempts were halted at the weekend over claims that Russian forces were violating cease-fire agreements by continuing to attack cities and the routes out of them.

In a press briefing on Tuesday, Ukraine's Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said Kyiv had agreed an evacuation route out of Sumy to the Ukrainian city of Poltava. The route had been agreed with both Russia and the International Red Cross Committee, she told reporters.

"No other routes were agreed upon," she said, according to a translation by NBC News. But she added: "We already have information that the Russian side is preparing a violation of this corridor, they prepare manipulations with the routes to make people go in [another] direction."

On Monday, a U.N. official said civilians must be permitted to evacuate from conflict zones "in the direction they choose."

— Chloe Taylor

Ukraine official says 18 people, including 2 children, killed in Sumy airstrike

A Russian airstrike on the city of Sumy killed 18 civilians, including two children, on Monday night, a Ukrainian official has said.

Anton Herashchenko, Ukraine's deputy minister of internal affairs, said in a Telegram post on Tuesday that Russian pilots had "committed another crime against humanity in Sumy" by dropping bombs on residential buildings in Sumy.

"Debris clearing is still ongoing," he said. "But the fact of the death of 18 civilians has already been established. Including two children."

Herashchenko said the deaths were also "on the conscience of European politicians … who have not yet made a decision to give us powerful anti-aircraft missiles or close the sky."

Western countries and the NATO military alliance have ruled out imposing a no-fly zone over Ukraine, arguing that shooting down Russian planes would lead to an escalation of the conflict and greater human suffering.

— Chloe Taylor

Russia using claims about Ukrainian nuclear weapons to justify invasion, UK says

In an intelligence update on Tuesday, the U.K. Ministry of Defense said that since the end of February, there has been "a notable intensification of Russian accusations that Ukraine is developing nuclear or biological weapons."

"These narratives are long standing but are currently likely being amplified as part of a retrospective justification for Russia's invasion of Ukraine."

Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine on Feb. 24.

Last week, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba called Russian claims that Ukraine was developing nuclear weapons a "hallucination."

"I once again refute this sick fake," he said on Twitter.

— Chloe Taylor

UN calls for safe passages for civilians fleeing conflict

Refugees queue for trains to Poland following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, at the train station in Lviv, Ukraine, March 7, 2022.
Marko Djurica | Reuters
Refugees queue for trains to Poland following the Russian invasion of Ukraine, at the train station in Lviv, Ukraine, March 7, 2022.

In a statement on Monday, Martin Griffiths, the U.N.'s under-secretary general for humanitarian affairs, said there were three immediate priorities that needed to be addressed in Ukraine to "lessen the pain and suffering we are all watching unfold in real time."

Firstly, he said, military operations must take constant care to spare civilians and civilian infrastructure from attacks — this included creating safe passages to allow civilians to leave areas of active hostilities "in the direction they choose."

On Monday, Ukrainian officials accused Russia of allowing civilians to evacuate only to Russian or Belarusian territory, a move slammed by Ukraine's government as "completely immoral."

Griffiths said in his statement that safe passage for humanitarian supplies into conflict zones was also vital. The U.N. also wanted a system of "constant communication" with both Russia and Ukraine, as well as assurances that the delivery of humanitarian aid would be enabled, he said.

— Chloe Taylor

Ukraine says Russian advance has ‘slowed significantly’

Service members of pro-Russian troops in uniforms without insignia drive an armoured vehicle in the separatist-controlled village of Bugas during Ukraine-Russia conflict in the Donetsk region, Ukraine March 6, 2022.
Alexander Ermochenko | Reuters
Service members of pro-Russian troops in uniforms without insignia drive an armoured vehicle in the separatist-controlled village of Bugas during Ukraine-Russia conflict in the Donetsk region, Ukraine March 6, 2022.

As Russia's invasion of Ukraine enters its thirteenth day, officials in Kyiv have said the pace of the Russian advance has slowed.

The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said in a post on Facebook Tuesday that: "The opponent continues the offensive operation, but the pace of promotion of his troops has slowed significantly," according to a translation.

As of 6 a.m. local time, defensive operations continued across the country, including in the city of Chernihiv, the capital Kyiv and on Ukraine's southern coast, the post said.

Russian troops were "increasingly violating the rules of international humanitarian law on military conflict," Ukrainian officials said.

In Kherson and Mykolaiv, which Ukraine said were currently occupied by Moscow's forces, Russia had set up tactical groups designed to "conduct propaganda work with the local population," according to Ukrainian officials.

— Chloe Taylor

Russia claims oil could hit $300 a barrel if Western allies target energy

Andrey Rudakov | Bloomberg via Getty Images
Oil pumping jacks, also known as "nodding donkeys", are reflected in a puddle as they operate in an oilfield near Almetyevsk, Russia, on Sunday, Aug. 16, 2020.

Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak has claimed that oil prices could climb beyond $300 a barrel if the West decides to move ahead with full sanctions on its energy exports.

"It is absolutely clear that a rejection of Russian oil would lead to catastrophic consequences for the global market," Novak said in an address on state television.

"The surge in prices would be unpredictable. It would be $300 per barrel if not more."

International benchmark Brent crude futures rose 3.5% to trade at $127.61 a barrel on Tuesday morning in London, while U.S. West Texas Intermediate futures jumped 3% to trade at $123.04.

— Sam Meredith

Putin still has strong support in some circles in Russia, says former NATO deputy chief

Rose Gottemoeller, a former deputy secretary general of NATO, said there are signs Russian President Vladimir Putin retains strong support in certain parts of the country.

"There are a number of very strong nationalists in Russia. Apparently they were present in … motorcades outside of the Kremlin yesterday, waving flags, supporting the president," she told CNBC's "Squawk Box Asia" on Tuesday.

Some polls also suggest that his popularity in Russia is still growing, she added.

On the other hand, people who are informed or have a stake in this, "like the oligarchs who have investments all over the world and want to keep their wealth" may be growing concerned as international sanctions hit.

"I am not surprised that they are becoming increasingly worried," Gottemoeller said.

"I don't think he's going to lose his grip on power, but perhaps some messages will start to get through to him," she said.

— Abigail Ng

Ukraine claims it killed another one of Putin's top generals, other senior Russian Army officers

A man stands on the rubble of a house destroyed by recent shelling during Ukraine-Russia conflict in Kharkiv, Ukraine March 7, 2022.
Oleksandr Lapshyn | Reuters
A man stands on the rubble of a house destroyed by recent shelling during Ukraine-Russia conflict in Kharkiv, Ukraine March 7, 2022.

Ukraine's defense intelligence agency said that Russian Army Major General Vitaly Gerasimov was killed, and other senior Russian Army officers "were also killed or wounded" in action near the city of Kharkiv.

Gerasimov was identified by the intelligence agency as the chief of staff and first deputy commander of the 41st Combined Arms Army.

The agency, which said Gerasimov had been "liquidated," claimed that data obtained related to his death near the city in northeast Ukraine "show significant problems with communication" in Russia's army, "and with the evacuation of their defeated units."

The post contains embedded audio files purporting to be intercepted communications between Russians discussing Gerasimov's death.

The reported killing comes days after another deputy commander of the 41st Combined, Gen. Andrei Sukhovetsky, was fatally shot by a Ukrainian sniper.

—Dan Mangan

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