♦ Russia is thought to be readying a massive assault on Kyiv after a 40-mile convoy of tanks, troops and artillery broke up and redeployed to surround the Ukrainian capital. Howitzers have been towed into position to open fire, as the convoy fanned out into the forests and towns near Kyiv, which is braced for attack.
♦ Refugees: up to 2.2 million Ukrainians have fled so far – UNHCR. Most staying with relatives, friends. More arriving with nowhere to go, no contacts. Host countries scramble to accommodate them. Thousands more Ukrainian refugees fled to central and eastern Europe on Wednesday, many with no contacts and nowhere to go, as host countries scrambled to accommodate them.
♦ The UK is, according to a statement, ready to place sanctions on 386 members of the Russian Duma for their support of the breakaway regions of Luhansk and Donetsk, the Foreign Office said. The measures are to include travel bans and asset freezes and will prevent those targeted from conducting business within the UK, a statement said on Friday. We will be watching this.
♦ Russia announced it will cut off access to Instagram and launch a criminal investigation into its parent company Meta, adding to the country’s growing isolation since the start of its war on Ukraine. Russia’s media watchdog, Roskomnadzor, on Friday said it planned to restrict access to the Instagram app within 48 hours, after Meta changed its moderation policies to allow for certain violent speech, such as “death to the Russian invaders”, by Ukrainian users.