NATO member Romania reported a possible violation of its airspace during an overnight Russian attack in neighboring Ukraine, saying it had not found debris on Romanian territory but would continue the search on Saturday.
The Romanian Army’s radar system detected “a possible unauthorized” breach of the country’s airspace after registering “groups of drones heading toward Ukrainian territory” near the border as Russia conducted “a new series of attacks on some targets in Ukraine,” Romania’s defense ministry said.
Russian strikes on Ukrainian infrastructure on the banks of the River Danube, which runs along the border with Romania, have renewed concerns of a potential escalation of the conflict in recent weeks. Romania said it found drone fragments on its territory this month, although it did not suggest this was an intentional attack. Still, the spillover to countries neighboring Ukraine has caused jitters in NATO, for which a mutual defense clause means that an attack on one member can be considered an attack on all.
Here’s the latest on the war and its ripple effect across the globe:
Romania’s Ministry of National Defense said police were deployed near the border where the potential breach was detected. The statement said residents there received warning alerts that were lifted later in the night. Romania began building some air-raid shelters near the Ukraine border after finding the suspected war debris earlier this month.
A Russian drone attack in a town in Ukraine’s Vinnytsia region sparked a fire, prompting authorities to order a limited evacuation of residents near the site as they extinguish the flames, the Vinnytsia governor, Serhiy Borzov, said Saturday on Telegram.
Russian air defense systems shot down nine rockets launched by Ukraine over Russia’s Belgorod region overnight, according to the Russian defense ministry.
Russian authorities in Kursk have reported strikes and shelling nearly every day over the past week. A Ukrainian drone strike on a substation in the Russian border region on Friday briefly left 5,000 people without electricity. Power was restored Friday evening, according to the regional governor. Russian regions in the country’s west have sought to bolster air defenses as Ukrainian forces grow more brazen, The Washington Post reports.
President Volodymyr Zelensky said Ukraine is negotiating with allies on joint weapons production, adding that this was a key outcome of his talks with President Biden on a recent trip to Washington. Zelensky made the comments at an international defense industry conference which Kyiv hosted — part of efforts to boost weapons production inside Ukraine and help reduce reliance on foreign deliveries as Western allies deplete their stocks.
Norway will start banning Russian-registered passenger cars from entering the country as of next week, echoing sanctions imposed by E.U. nations. Norway, which has a long border with Russia, is a member of NATO but not the European Union. The Norwegian government said the ban will stop Russian-registered passenger cars with nine or fewer seats from entering, with some exceptions, while buses and minivans will still be able to enter at one border crossing.
But the Nordic nation has formally joined the military bloc, spurred by the threat of Russian aggression and doubling NATO’s land border with Russia. On the sidelines of U.N. meetings in New York this month, Tharoor spoke with Finnish Foreign Minister Elina Valtonen on life in NATO and the prospects of the war. Read the conversation here.
Loveday Morris, Amar Nadhir and Serhiy Morgunov contributed to this report.