Russia cuts off gas supplies to Poland and Bulgaria

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As we’ve reported, Russia’s energy giant Gazprom says it has completely cut off gas supplies to both Bulgaria and Poland after not receiving its April payments in roubles.

The announcement comes after Russian President Vladimir Putin demanded that countries deemed “unfriendly” to Russia must start paying for gas supplies from the country in roubles – something both Poland and Bulgaria have refused to do.

The demand is seen as an attempt to boost the rouble, which has been hit by Western sanctions.

Others European countries have also refused to pay in roubles – but right now Poland and Bulgaria are the only two that Russia has announced it is cutting off supplies to.

In its statement, Gazprom also warned Poland and Bulgaria against “unauthorised withdrawals” of gas running through either country on its way elsewhere.

What’s happening?
If you’re just joining us, here’s a quick round-up of some of the main developments so far today in Ukraine:

Russia’s gas supplier Gazprom says it has completely cut off deliveries to both Poland and Bulgaria after both countries refused to start paying for supplies in roubles.

Earlier this morning, gas supplies to Poland through Belarus temporarily dropped off before resuming – we’re yet to see data on gas volumes following Gazprom’s most recent statement.

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has accused Russian special services of carrying out a series of attacks in a pro-Russian breakaway region of Moldova.

Russia’s ground invasion of Ukraine is slowly making progress, the US-based Institute for the Study of War think tank says.

But the UK’s Ministry of Defence says Ukraine retains control over the majority of its airspace.

Russian air defence systems were triggered overnight in the Kursk region, a local official said, adding that no damage was reported.

Multiple explosions were also heard in the Russian city of Belgorod, near the Ukrainian border.

Drone giant DJI Technology Co Ltd has become the first major Chinese company to stop doing business in Russia since the start of the war.

This is Vikas Pandey and Meryl Sebastian in Delhi signing off and handing over to our colleagues Alex Therrien and Leo Sands in London who will continue providing regular updates as they come.