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Russia-Ukraine war: What happened today (March 12)

As Saturday draws to a close in Kyiv and in Moscow, here are the key developments of the day:

President Biden approved $200 million in new security aid to Ukraine. The funding includes anti-aircraft weapons and small arms to support Ukraine. The new package brings U.S. aid for Ukraine to $1.2 billion.

Russian attacks on several cities continue. Fighting carried on outside of the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv. The ongoing conflict has disrupted the work of humanitarian groups, as Russian forces target health care sites.

Ukrainians protested the alleged abduction of a mayor. Some 2,000 people gathered before Melitopol's city hall to call for the release of Mayor Ivan Fedorov, who was captured by Russians on Friday, officials said.

Ukraine's president directly addressed the mothers of Russian forces. In an overnight video message, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy told them not to send their children "to fight in a foreign land."

More sanctions on oligarchs. The Premier League board is ordering Roman Abramovich to give up his ownership of the Chelsea Football Club, following the U.K. government's move to sanction the Russian businessman.

In-depth

The current crisis in Ukraine poses grim parallels with Russia's bombing campaigns in Chechnya in the 1990s.

As Ukrainian refugees seek safety in Poland, a mayor there has found himself at the forefront the country's surprising shift away from its anti-refugee policies — at least, for now.

McDonald's symbolic exit from Russia marks a return to the country's Soviet era.

Pets are helping Ukrainians cope with the stresses of war.

A new memoir from Marie Yovanovitch, former U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, gives insight into the post-Soviet Union politics of Russia and Ukraine.

Earlier developments

You can read more news from Saturday here, as well as more in-depth reporting and daily recaps here. Also, listen and subscribe to NPR's State of Ukraine podcast for updates throughout the day.

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