Ukraine’s capital was hit by fresh missile strikes on Friday, with multiple cities under grinding Russian siege. At a children’s hospital in the northern city of Chernihiv, which is surrounded on all sides by Russian forces, the cancer ward has run out of painkillers, and will soon run out of food.
This comes as Russian forces have taken control of Europe’s biggest nuclear power plant after an overnight attack on a facility that produces a fifth of Ukraine’s electricity, with the country’s regulator warning that an accident now could produce the world’s worst nuclear disaster.
A fire broke out at a training building for the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Station as a result of early morning shelling, Ukraine’s state emergency service said. That was extinguished by daybreak and rise in radiation levels was reported at the site.
Operation of the nuclear plant continues normally, safety experts said, and Zaporizhzhia is equipped with several backup systems to continue cooling operations for days. Those include safety upgrades made following the Fukushima disaster. But the consequences of a mistake are dire, the regulator warned.
In Canada, the federal government announced new measures in response to the invasion, including a 35-per-cent tariff on imports from Russia and Belarus, a close ally of the Kremlin, and a streamlined immigration process for Ukrainians fleeing Moscow’s military assault. Ukrainians seeking refuge in Canada will still be required to undergo a visa-application process because the program’s security check and background screening aims to weed out pro-Kremlin actors who mounted a war against Kyiv in eastern Ukraine for the past eight years.
In preparation for their arrival, resettlement agencies and associations in Canada are already organizing donations and compiling lists of available housing. Agencies say they are being inundated with calls from people wanting to help. “People are worried about their family and friends, and they are willing to bring, sponsor and help them somehow get out of the war zone,” said Iryna Matsiuk, the Saskatoon-based co-chair of the Ukraine Crisis Response Committee, part of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress Saskatchewan Provincial Council.
In the latest Decibel, Ottawa bureau chief Robert Fife explains the various levels of measures that Canada, as a medium-sized power, has enacted since Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine and where things might go next.
Live updates: Catch up on the news and stay on top of the latest events with our guide here.
More coverage from our correspondents:
- From Johannesburg: In sign of Russian influence, many African leaders decline to criticize Putin
- From Istanbul and Ottawa: Canadian man urges Ottawa to help Ukrainian family members stranded in Turkey for cancer treatment
- From Toronto: Russian cargo jet grounded at Toronto’s Pearson airport
- From Hong Kong: China-led Asian Infrastructure and Investment Bank pausing deals involving Russia and Belarus
- From Newfoundland: Newfoundland’s largest cod processing plant halts Russian imports, putting workers out of a job
Analysis and opinion:
- The ghost of Kyiv, and the digital quagmire of modern warfare
- Is Vladimir Putin a war criminal?
- Eric Reguly: The party’s over for Russia’s oligarchs. The ones facing sanctions are losing billions – and their megayachts
- Robyn Urback: In remaining to fight for his country, Zelensky set the tone for both domestic and international resistance
- Gary Mason: In a war being waged for all humanity, the West is paying a shamefully small price
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ALSO ON OUR RADAR
Bank of Canada Governor Tiff Macklem warns of broadening inflation: Canada’s central bank has “considerable space” to raise interest rates, says Tiff Macklem, as inflationary pressures broaden and commodity prices move sharply higher in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Macklem said he hasn’t ruled out a half-percentage point rate hike at a coming meeting.
Rogers will not be allowed to acquire all of Shaw’s wireless spectrum licences, minister says: Industry Minister François-Philippe Champagne says he won’t allow Rogers to acquire all of Shaw’s wireless spectrum licences as part of the takeover of the Calgary-based cable company, adding it’s “incompatible” with the government’s policies on competition for spectrum and mobile service.
As provinces lift COVID-19 restrictions, vulnerable people worry about their safety: Saskatchewan became the first province to lift all COVID-19 measures, while others have started to end some mandates. Yet as fed up as many people may be with pandemic precautions, the more vulnerable among us, and their caregivers, are pleading for a bit more solidarity.
Co-founder of Christian crowdfunding site tells MPs his company would allow fundraising for KKK if legal: Jacob Wells of GiveSendGo, a Christian website that helped facilitate Canadian convoy fundraising efforts, told MPs during a committee hearing that his website would allow the Ku Klux Klan to raise money through the platform, if the activity was legal.
Stocks extended their losses for the week on Friday as investors piled into government bonds and gold for cover while scrutinizing the latest twists in Russia’s escalating invasion of Ukraine. Industrial metals, grains and oil gained while Asian shares mined 16-month lows after news of a fire, later extinguished, near a Ukraine nuclear facility following fighting with Russian forces. S&P 500 futures and Nasdaq futures were down around 0.5%. The Canadian dollar was trading at 78.62 US cents.
WHAT EVERYONE’S TALKING ABOUT
A realist’s guide to winners and losers in the wave of interest-rate hikes that just began
“You thought anything house-related would be listed on the worse side, right? Won’t rising rates hurt affordability in a market that is already too expensive by virtually all rational measures? The answer is yes, let’s hope so.” - Rob Carrick
Sunwing deal is just the first as hospitality sector faces consolidation pressures
“Sunwing’s financial challenges mirror what is playing out for owners of hotels, restaurants, gyms, ski hills and all sorts of other privately held businesses hit by the pandemic. If they survived the past two years, they did so by slashing costs, burning through savings and borrowing money.” - Andrew Willis
TODAY’S EDITORIAL CARTOON
Full Stream Ahead: The three best films of 2021 are now available to stream at home
If you don’t want to head to a theatre this weekend, good news: Drive My Car, Licorice Pizza and West Side Story – three of 2021′s best films – are now available for streaming online.
MOMENT IN TIME: March 4, 1922
Nosferatu, the first vampire film, premieres
Over the next 12 months, Hollywood will roll out a veritable bloodbath of high-budget vampire movies (Morbius, Salem’s Lot, Renfield with Nicolas Cage, and now in preproduction, a Western riff on Dracula directed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Chloe Zhao). But culture’s long obsession with all things fang-y would not exist if not for the blood-sucking granddaddy of them all, Nosferatu, which had its gala opening in Germany 100 years ago today. The magnificently creepy masterpiece from German director F.W. Murnau – who cast Max Schreck as Count Orlok, a rodent-like vampire who brings a plague to the town of an estate agent and his wife – can take credit for influencing a century’s worth of culture, across mediums and genres (including the delightful 2000 meta-comedy Shadow of the Vampire starring John Malkovich as Murnau and Willem Dafoe as a genuinely monstrous Schreck). But the film almost didn’t make it into the world at all: An unauthorized adaptation of the 1897 novel Dracula, Nosferatu was nearly blocked from release by the heirs of author Bram Stoker. Good thing that didn’t happen, because in terms of popular culture, it would have, well, sucked. Barry Hertz