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Russia widened its military offensive in Ukraine on Friday, striking near airports in the west of the country for the first time as troops kept up pressure on the capital, Kyiv, and the U.S. and its allies prepared to revoke Russia’s favored trading status in a new punishment for the invasion.

The airstrikes on the Lutsk airfield left two Ukrainian servicemen dead and six people wounded, according to the head of the surrounding Volyn region, Yuriy Pohulyayko. In Ivano-Frankivsk, residents were ordered to shelters after an air raid alert, Mayor Ruslan Martsinkiv said.

Ukraine accused Russian forces of hitting a psychiatric hospital near the eastern Ukrainian town of Izyum on Friday in what the regional governor called “a brutal attack on civilians.”

Canada slapped sanctions on Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich on Friday, but said the move won’t affect the Canadian operations of Evraz North America, which supplies much of the steel for the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Speaking in Warsaw, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Mr. Abramovich and four others who prop up Russian President Vladimir Putin’s regime were hit with an assets freeze and banned from doing business in Canada.

In Ottawa, MPs are expected to hear from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who will deliver a speech virtually next Tuesday, Government House Leader Mark Holland says. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau invited the besieged leader to address Parliament when the two spoke on Wednesday. Zelensky has already addressed the British Parliament and U.S. Congress amid his push for Western leaders to do more to punish Russia for its war in Ukraine.

In the latest Decibel, we hear from The Globe’s Europe correspondent, Paul Waldie, who has been reporting from border towns in Poland since the start of the war. He discusses how the towns are coping with the influx of Ukrainian refugees and why the Polish government needs to figure out a plan to help people resettle.

Live updates: Catch up on the news and stay up to date on the latest events with our guide, here.

More coverage of the Russia-Ukraine war:

Opinion and analysis:

A Ukrainian soldier hides from a helicopter airstrike amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine, near Demydiv, Ukraine, on March 10, 2022.MAKSIM LEVIN/Reuters

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Jean Charest says he doesn’t support Bill 21 and favours more oil and gas production

Jean Charest says he is opposed to Quebec’s controversial religious-symbols law and also favours more oil and gas production, including new pipelines, as he formally entered the race for the Conservative Party leadership.

In an interview, the former Quebec premier said a Charest government would present its views on Bill 21 if it goes to the Supreme Court of Canada, and would work with Quebec on any ruling.

“This bill is very popular in Quebec, and there’s a reason for that: There’s an anxiety in regards to issues of identity in Quebec, and we acknowledge that,” he said. Charest told The Globe’s Ian Bailey that the issue doesn’t need to be divisive in Quebec – leaders need to look at the bigger picture of what needs to be done to create a more inclusive society.

Read more:

Ontario judge rules spousal abuse can be considered in divorce cases

An Ontario judge has created a new legal claim of “family violence” in divorce cases, opening the door to large financial awards and bitter litigation despite the no-fault rules in place across Canada in family disputes.

Under the federal Divorce Act’s no-fault rules, judges cannot consider spousal misconduct when determining such matters as child or spousal support and division of property. But Ontario Superior Court Justice Renu Mandhane ruled that in unusual cases, judges may take into account a history of abuse, and award damages where appropriate, reports The Globe’s Sean Fine.

The ruling opens the possibility that a pattern of spousal abuse can be compensated in divorce cases, without abused spouses needing to file a separate claim in civil court.

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ALSO ON OUR RADAR

Leaders of truck convoy protests sought to overthrow government, national security adviser says: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s national security adviser says it was necessary to invoke the federal Emergencies Act to end the trucker protests, whose leaders were bent on overthrowing the government. Whether the organizers had the ability to do so, Jody Thomas said, is irrelevant.

No need to delay the release of the 2022 budget because of war in Ukraine, says Parliamentary Budget Officer: Canada’s budget watchdog is urging MPs to legislate a fixed deadline for the government to table an annual budget and says it is not necessary to delay this year’s spending plan because of the war in Ukraine. In a report, Yves Giroux’s office said the yearly uncertainty over the budget’s timing undermines the ability of Parliament to properly scrutinize spending.

Ontario unveils transportation plan, including two proposed Toronto-area transit lines: The Ontario government is dangling the prospect of a new transit line across the top of Toronto and another connecting downtown to Pearson airport, as part of a pre-election transportation plan unveiled on Thursday.


MORNING MARKETS

European markets rebound on economic hopes: Stocks rose on Friday as investors clung to hopes the global economy would continue to grow despite the war in Ukraine and yet more evidence central banks will need to tighten policy fast to tame inflation. Around 6 a.m. ET, Britain’s FTSE 100 rose 1.05 per cent. Germany’s DAX and France’s CAC 40 advanced 1.25 per cent and 0.33 per cent, respectively. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei closed down 2.05 per cent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 1.61 per cent. New York futures were positive. The Canadian dollar was trading at 78.33 US cents.


WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT

A message to Conservatives: Smarten up – serious times need serious leaders

“The stakes could not possibly be higher. And not only for the peace of the world. With Russia’s economy collapsing under the weight of international sanctions, commodity prices soaring, and inflation at 40-year highs, Canada’s economy is in highly uncertain territory. Deeply held assumptions, born of a decade or more of relative stability – that interest rates would stay low, that fiscal deficits were manageable, that in the end, we’d be all right – are now having to be revised, on the fly.” - Andrew Coyne

The answer to nuclear anxiety is to get rid of nuclear weapons

“Perhaps we will be moved, once again, to debate why we have these weapons, and why we’re kept in the dark about how they might be used. I hope so. The best way to deal with nuclear anxiety would be to have no nukes to be anxious about. Unfortunately, there’s a more dangerous path ahead as well: There are military and political leaders around the world using this critical moment to call for more weapons buildup, not less.” - Elizabeth Renzetti


TODAY’S EDITORIAL CARTOON

Brian Gable/The Globe and Mail


LIVING BETTER

Spring’s most captivating historical fiction

This spring’s most transportive historical fiction offers an itinerary across the ages – Edinburgh in 1869; the Algonquin territories in 1657; Windsor, Ont., in 1921 and the House of Windsor in 1981, writes Sarah Laing. From Flora Harding to Danielle Daniel, these nine writers know how to make dry facts dance.


MOMENT IN TIME: March 11, 2020

WHO declares COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus attends a daily press briefing on COVID-19 at the WHO headquarters in Geneva on March 11, 2020.FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images

Looking back, the numbers seem strikingly modest: 118,000 cases, 4,291 deaths. But what proved most alarming to officials with the World Health Organization was that the virus that causes COVID-19 had spread to 114 countries by early March, 2020, and was gaining momentum. That was enough to prompt the international body to declare the disease a pandemic – a move that many had anticipated for weeks. When director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus first uttered “pandemic” during a news conference in Geneva, he called it “a word, that if misused, can cause unreasonable fear, or unjustified acceptance that the fight is over.” The WHO had previously been criticized for naming the swine flu outbreak of 2009 a pandemic, triggering large vaccine orders in many countries along with emergency preparations that were later deemed unnecessary. By comparison, COVID-19 was to prove far more serious, in part because no vaccines were available to deal with the novel coronavirus. And while the pandemic declaration was intended as a rallying cry to exhort governments to work harder to contain the virus where possible, its timing coincided with the abrupt shift by many countries – including Canada – from a strategy of containment to one of widespread lockdown. Ivan Semeniuk


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