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Latest in Ukraine: All eyes on Bakhmut as Russia fights to take it over (March 6)

Ukrainian soldiers fire a self-propelled howitzer towards Russian positions near Bakhmut, Donetsk region, Ukraine, Sunday.
Ukrainian soldiers fire a self-propelled howitzer towards Russian positions near Bakhmut, Donetsk region, Ukraine, Sunday.

Here's a look ahead and a roundup of key developments from the past week.

What to watch

Russian forces have been trying for months to capture Bakhmut, a small town in eastern Ukraine. Ukraine's top generals say they want to continue defending the town that has become a symbol of Ukrainian resistance.

Turkey's talks with Sweden and Finland over their bids to join NATO are expected to resume Thursday.

Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, visits the White House Friday for talks with President Biden, following her trip to Canada.

Also Friday, French President Emmanuel Macron hosts British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak for talks in Paris.

What happened last week

The top U.S. and Russian government diplomats met for the first time since the invasion began, in a brief walk and talk alongside meetings of the Group of 20 nations' foreign ministers in India.

Chinese leader Xi Jinping and Belarus' leader Alexander Lukashenko met in Beijing and declared their nations' friendship "unbreakable." Lukashenko, a close Kremlin ally, endorsed China's proposal to end the war in Ukraine.

President Biden hosted German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at the White House, asserting their unity in supporting Ukraine for as long as needed.

Two key bridges in Bakhmut were destroyed, but it was unclear by whom, as both sides could have tactical reasons to do so.

Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas, one of Europe's staunchest supporters of Ukraine, is set to remain in her post after her center-right party overwhelmingly won Sunday's election.


In the Donbas, Russia's vast numbers of troops weigh heavily on Ukraine's defenders.

U.S. and Russia's top diplomats meet for the first time since the Ukraine war began.

Russia bombards Ukraine with cyberattacks, but the impact appears limited.

Justice Department task force takes aim at Russian oligarchs and their riches.

Merrick Garland supports efforts to hold Russia accountable for war crimes.

Meet the volunteers bringing relief to the residents of embattled Bakhmut, Ukraine.

Russia's foreign minister gets laughed at over Ukraine remarks at a global conference.

How Russia's war in Ukraine is changing the world's oil markets.

Ukraine is dominating the election in Estonia, a key NATO ally.

As G-20 ministers gather in Delhi, Ukraine may dominate — despite India's own agenda.

NPR's Rough Translation podcast looks at the covert effort to get abortion pills into Ukraine.

Special report

Russia's war in Ukraine is changing the world: See our updated report on its ripple effects in all corners of the globe.

Earlier developments

You can read past recaps here. For context and more in-depth stories, you can find more of NPR's coverage here. Also, listen and subscribe to NPR's State of Ukraine podcast for updates throughout the day.

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