FirstFT: Zelensky vows to resist attacks on Russian infrastructure

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Volodymyr Zelensky said Russia’s new strategy of destroying Ukraine’s infrastructure and plunging it into darkness will not weaken the country’s resolve to liberate all occupied territories, describing the conflict as a “war of strength and resilience.”

We must return all lands. . . Because I think the battlefield is the way to go when there is no diplomacy,” Zelensky told financial times in an interview. If you can’t fully reclaim your land, the war is simply frozen. It’s only a matter of time before it resumes.”

Moscow has stepped up its bombing campaign on Ukraine’s critical infrastructure since last month, hoping to force Kyiv to make concessions despite its progress on the battlefield.

On Wednesday, Russia fired 70 missiles at infrastructure targets across Ukraine, leaving about 80 percent of the country in the dark and without water. All fifteen of Ukraine’s nuclear reactors have been shut down because electricity has become unstable.

Zelensky admitted that the fate of Crimea was rising on the international agenda. “I understand that everyone is confused by the situation and what will happen to Crimea. If someone is ready to offer us a way in terms of ending the occupation of Crimea by non-military means, I will only be in favor.

“If the solution [does not involve] removal of occupation and [Crimea] is part of the Russian Federation, so no one should waste their time on this. It’s a waste of time.”

Do you think you caught up on the news this week? Take our quiz and find out.

1. Chinese lenders are pouring $162 billion in credit into real estate developers Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, China’s largest bank by assets, announced the expansion of lines of credit totaling 655 billion renminbi ($92 billion) to 12 developers. The lending marks a key moment for China’s ailing real estate sector, which drives more than a quarter of economic output but has been mired in a liquidity crisis for more than a year.

2. Foxconn moves to quell protests at the iPhone factory Foxconn, Apple’s manufacturing partner, has offered payments of 10,000 renminbi ($1,400) to newly hired employees who chose to leave the iPhone factory and pledged to honor wage agreements, in a bid to quell unrest after workers clashed with police.

3. Twitter disbands Brussels office Twitter has dissolved its entire Brussels office, prompting concerns among EU officials about whether the social media platform will adhere to the bloc’s strict new rules on online content monitoring.

4. Disney awarded Iger a $10 million consulting deal to advise the CEO Bob Iger received a $10 million deal to advise his successor Bob Chapek even though the two executives were barely on terms. Iger returned to Disney this week as CEO after ousting his heir-chosen entanglement in an internal revolution.

5. Anwar Ibrahim is sworn in as Prime Minister of Malaysia Anwar was a protégé of former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad. The reformist leader was sworn in on Thursday night after five days of uncertainty following Saturday’s general election. He takes the reins of a country riven by political divisions and struggling with a fragile economy reeling from the pandemic.

note join Top Financial Times journalists in conversation with leaders in business and government, including Sequoia’s managing director for India and Southeast Asia, a former economic advisor to the Government of India, vice dean of the Shanghai Institute for Advanced Finance, and many more in The Global Boardroom on 7-9 Dec. Register for free to get your digital card today.

next day

Sentencing Bishop Zain Sentencing is set for the former Bishop of Hong Kong, Cardinal Zen, 90, and five others accused of failing to register a now-defunct fund set up to help people arrested in mass anti-government protests in 2019. They have all pleaded not guilty . If convicted, they face a fine of up to HK$10,000, with no jail time.

Black Friday One of the biggest days begins for the retail docket, as analysts closely monitor any signs of consumers cutting spending. In the aftermath of Black Friday, major retailers like Argos and Woolworths have transformed the advertising industry.

world Cup Iran will face Wales in the first match today. Qatar plays Senegal next, followed by the Netherlands, Ecuador, England and the United States.

Day five of the World Cup kicks off tomorrow © AFP via Getty Images

What else do we read

The cost of Chinese chips Big Read New examines the cost of the US ban on Chinese semiconductors. New US technology rules will hurt chipmakers in China but also add to inflationary pressures on many products.

In the court of King Trump Jemima Kelly visits Mar-a-Lago and mingle with the “hooters” and lovers of the former US president at his home base, social club, and partly political nerve center for a man whose obsession with winning threatens to split the Republican base.

The United Kingdom limits the use of Chinese-made surveillance systems on government websites In announcing the ban, Cabinet Office Minister Oliver Dowden said it would cover visual surveillance equipment “produced by companies subject to the National Intelligence Act of the People’s Republic of China”.

How magical thinking enabled the ups and downs of FTX Since the cryptocurrency exchange imploded this month, it has become clear that the concentration of power, coupled with a lack of oversight, has caused huge losses for customers because the money has been funneled without any accountability. Gillian Tate muses on the sector’s deep contradictions. If you missed your FTX bankruptcy hearing, we’ve got you covered.

How China’s close contacts are ramping up pressure on Beijing’s Covid-free policy More than 1.3 million people in China were under medical observation this week as close contacts of Covid-19 cases, the highest level since the outbreak began in Wuhan. The number of close contacts is a measure of whether the authorities are still able to control the virus. If it gets out of control further, the government can impose stricter lockdowns.

The 1.3 million Chinese close contacts are piling pressure on the country’s zero-tolerance policy © Getty Images

drink food

I have nothing against staples like sour cream, chives, tzatziki or guacamole. But when you want something with a little more gastronomic clout, what are your picks for dipping after hummus? American chef Lucas Folgers Snacks for dinner An entire chapter is devoted to dives that feel adventurous and luxurious while being relatively simple.

Recipes of snacks for dinner, including (clockwise from bottom left) Dill & White Bean Spread, Focaccia, and Cottage Cheese Grebec
Recipes from Snacks for Dinner, including (clockwise from bottom left) dill and white bean spread, focaccia and cottage cheese gribiche © Cara Howe

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