White House Correspondent Ksenija Pavlovic Mcateer gives her take on the latest news from the White House

THE WHITE HOUSE

Biden will return to the White House from Wilmington, DE, today, where he will immediately host a conference call with Western leaders regarding the invasion of Ukraine.

DIGITAL ASSETS

The EU could rush the approval of crypto regulations as a layer of protection surrounding Russia’s sanctions.

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

Boris Johnson announces that those fleeing the conflict in Ukraine with family in the UK will be welcomed at the border, as he commits to sending more arms into the region.

*All this and more ahead!

Good Morning DC!

The battle for world peace intensifies. Putin has issued a nuclear weapons threat to NATO. In the words of Lenin, “There are decades when nothing happens, and there are weeks when decades happen.” Today’s edition of GMDC follows the most up-to-date news about the fast-developing situation in Ukraine. 

BREAKING THIS MORNING

  • Russia-Ukraine negotiations have started at the Ukraine-Belarus border.
  • Roman Abramovich is assisting with the peace talks

“I can confirm that Roman Abramovich was contacted by the Ukrainian side for support in achieving a peaceful resolution, and that he has been trying to help ever since,” Abramovich spokesman confirmed.

“Considering what is at stake, we would ask for your understanding as to why we have not commented on neither the situation as such nor his involvement.”

Ukraine and Russia have agreed to hold peace talks at the Belarusian-Ukrainian border, the office of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced on Sunday. 

Releasing a photo of the room where today’s Russia-Ukraine negotiations took place, the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that they are waiting for delegations to arrive.

This Is The Venue Of Today’s Russia-Ukraine Negotiations

Ukraine and Russia have agreed to hold peace talks at the Belarusian-Ukrainian border, the office […]

In Belarus, everything is ready to host Russia-Ukraine negotiations. Waiting for delegations to arrive,” it has been announced on Twitter.

Vladimir Putin has placed Russia’s nuclear weapons on “high alert” against NATO. In a televised address on Sunday, President Putin said that due to NATO’s “unfriendly steps” towards Russia, he was ordering his military to place its nuclear deterrent “into a special mode of combat service.” The White House said that this was a “totally unacceptable” escalation on Russia’s behalf and that NATO poses no threat to Russia. According to the GMDC sources, the Pentagon is working behind-the-scenes to defuse the situation with Russia regarding nuclear escalation. 

The Western countries are escalating sanctions against Russia.

The European Union, a political club since its founding days, is becoming a political-military club before our eyes, a geo-political development to be watched closely. The 27-nation bloc has announced that they will be financing the purchase and supply of weapons to Ukraine, including “fighter jets,” as a part of the EU’s military package, the first move of its kind in the history of the European Union.  

Read: Josep Borrell: It is a matter of life and death. So the EU will provide weapons for Ukraine’s armed forces ( Guardian

On Sunday evening Ursula von der Leyen announced new sanctions against Russia and said the EU would close its airspace to Russian planes. The EU will also ban Sputnik and Russia Today, two media companies, a move that has been pushed for in the UK, but Boris Johnson said during PMQ that banning media is what Russia does, not the UK. 

The EU and the US are cutting off several Russian banks from SWIFT, the main international payment system. Russian people are running to the banks to withdraw their money. The rubel has plunged to its lowest low when valuated against US dollar.   

In a new measure against the Russian oligarchs, the UK government will mandate all property owners in Britain to declare their real identity. According to Boris Johnson, it will be deemed illegal to disguise property ownership behind shell companies. 

Russian Billionaire Roman Abramovich has transferred control of the Chelsea soccer club to its trustees. Following his announcement, Chelsea Football Club has put out its own statement referring to the situation in Ukraine as “horrific and devastating.”

Priti Patel has canceled visas for the Belarusian men’s basketball team and got their visa canceled by UK’s Priti Patel. The team was to play in a World Cup qualifier in Newcastle. 

England will boycott all football matches against Russia over the “atrocities being committed by the Russian leadership,” according to the Football Association.

  

THE WHITE HOUSE

Biden will return this morning to the White House from Wilmington, DE, where he went for the weekend before announcing Judge Kenaji Brows as his nominee for the Supreme Court.  She will be the first Black woman to sit on the nation’s highest court.

Yesterday, at the Wilmington Country Club, President Biden attended the memorial service for Joan Olivere (née Berger), the mother of Beau Biden’s widow, Hallie. Ms. Olivere died on February 20, aged 76.

This morning, after receiving the President’s Daily Brief, he will host a call from the Situation Room with the Western leaders regarding the situation in Ukraine. 

In domestic news today, Biden will host a reception this afternoon honoring Black History Month. 

DIGITAL ASSETS

European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde said at a press briefing that the EU should approve crypto regulations so that Russia, currently under sanctions, won’t move money via crypto. 

“We would welcome a strong regulatory framework for digital assets in Europe, Lagarde!,” said Sam Bankman-Fried. “But in the meantime, we are already complying with international sanctions to prevent evasion, and will do so whether or not it’s mandated,” he added, suggesting to Lagarde that they should “get in touch.” 

TODAY’S CRYPTO PRICES

Bitcoin (BTC):$39,197.87

Ether (ETH):$2,693.10

SOL:$89.82

LUNA: $65.32

FOREIGN AFFAIRS

The UN Secretary General said today that ”The escalation of Russia’s military operations in Ukraine is leading to escalating human rights violations.”

US Secretary Blinken held a call with the G7 Foreign Ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom, as well as the High Representative of the European Union to discuss how to respond to Russia. According to the State Department, the Foreign Minister of Ukraine was also present on the call. 

Since the crisis, approximately 200,000 people have fled from Ukraine to Poland. As Poland could fill up quickly, across the pond, in the UK, PM Johnson confirmed that as a sign of solidarity, the refugees from Ukraine whose family members are in the UK would be able to join them. 

Boris Johnson announced that the UK would be sending more arms to Ukraine. However, that does not mean that the UK will engage its military inside of Ukraine. Britain won’t engage in “direct fighting” or implement a Western no-fly zone over Ukraine would guarantee the all-out war.  

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss made a series of statements on Ukraine that have been criticized. Speaking on BBC One’s Sunday Morning show, Truss said that she would “absolutely” support Britons who want to join the fight in Ukraine. That would be illegal, but this is not the first time the Foreign Secretary is not showing steller expertise in foreign affairs she is in charge of. 

In the COVID news, the UK government is planning for the upcoming Easter holidays to kill mandatory locator forms for all passengers coming into the UK. 

And that’s a wrap for this Monday morning, February 28, 2022. Good Morning DC will be back tomorrow to bring you the latest first. 

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Ksenija Pavlovic McAteer

Ksenija Pavlovic is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the Pavlovic Today, The Chief White House Correspondent. Pavlovic was a Teaching Fellow and Doctoral Fellow in the Political Science department...