Russia said on Friday that its forces had captured Solidar in eastern Ukraine in a rare victory for Moscow after months of battlefield reversals, but on January 14 its forces continued to fight in the town.
* President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said that the Ukrainian forces are Solida, Fighting continued in the small salt-mining town and other towns in the Donetsk region, he said.
* Reuters cannot verify accounts.
* Journalists outside Solidar could hear mortar and rocket fire Friday afternoon and saw Ukrainian forces ferrying troops, CNN said.
* Yevgeny Prigozhin, an ultra-nationalist mercenary leader whose Wagner group included prisoners, complained after the Russian military honored Soledar without telling his fighters.
* Finland joins Poland as part of a Western coalition to supply German-made Leopard tanks to Ukraine.
* France expects to deliver AMX 10-RC light combat tanks to Ukraine within two months, Armed Forces Minister Sebastien Lecornu said.
* A Russian Foreign Ministry official said Belarus could enter the conflict. Russia used Belarus as a springboard to invade Ukraine in February, but the border is now so waterlogged that it is impossible to attack from there. 4 p.m
* Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, after meeting with US President Joe Biden in Washington, stressed the importance of resisting Russia’s aggression, and said that if a unilateral change to the status quo is unchallenged, the same will happen in other places, including Asia. It cites China’s commitment to reunification with autonomous Taiwan, using force if necessary.
* Russia is becoming too dependent on oil revenue to support its budget as military spending increases, economists say, and the government could raise taxes if crude prices fail to meet expectations this year.
* A close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin has discredited the armed forces and suggested confiscating the property and assets of Russians opposed to the war in Ukraine.
* At least four Russian supertankers are shipping Russian Urals crude to China, according to trade sources and tracking data, as Moscow looks for ships for exports after G7 oil price caps limit the use of Western cargo services and insurance.
Edited by Grant McCool and William Mallard.
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