Today, Thursday, March 10, Russian museums asked some Italian museums to return works loaned from them.
And according to “Reuters”, Italian galleries said that two museums in Milan will return many artworks loaned from Russia, after requests to return them early, in response to the sanctions imposed on Russia.
The Hermitage Museum, based in St. Petersburg, authorized the Palazzo Reale, Milan, to request the return of two paintings it had loaned to it, the first of a young woman in a feathered hat, by the Venetian painter Titian.
I think the two works will be delivered at the end of March, museum director Domenico Perin said, adding that the request could not be opposed.
Perrin added, “Titian’s work is certainly important, but the exhibition can continue well without him.” When I read the letter, I felt bitter that culture must be protected from war, but these are difficult times.
Galleria d’Italia, which runs another museum in Milan, said it had received a request to return 23 of the nearly 200 works in the current exhibition, which were on loan from three Russian museums.
They will be returned before the fair closes on March 27, said a spokesman for Intesa Sanpolo, which owns two other sites in Naples and Vicenza.
Similar requests have been received by the Rome-based Vindia Foundation and another museum north of Udine.
The Russian military operation in Ukraine continues for the fifteenth day in a row, since its beginning on February 24.
The Russian-Ukrainian conflict gained a new turning point, on February 21, after Russian President Vladimir Putin announced the recognition of Donetsk and Luhansk as independent republics of Ukraine, in an escalatory step that drew great anger from Kyiv and its Western allies.
In the wake of this, the Russian forces began, at dawn on Thursday, February 24, to launch a military operation in eastern Ukraine, which opened the door to the possibility of the outbreak of a “third world war”, which would be the first in the twenty-first century.
The European Union said the world has been living in a “blacker atmosphere” since World War Two, while the European Union and the United States imposed a package of sanctions against Russia, which European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen described as “the harshest ever.”
However, the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization “NATO” have so far insisted not to engage in any military operation in Ukraine, and the EU countries also refuse to impose a no-fly zone in Ukraine, contrary to the desire of Kyiv, which called on European countries to take that step, Which the US administration said would cause a “third world war”.
Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said, earlier, that the outbreak of a third world war would be “nuclear and destructive,” as he described it.
On the scene of the events, the Russian Defense Ministry said, at the beginning of the military operation, that the Ukrainian air defense system and its bases had been destroyed and the infrastructure of the Air Force was out of service.
Later, the Russian Defense announced, on Saturday, February 26, that it had issued orders to the Russian forces to launch military operations on all axes in Ukraine, following Kyiv’s refusal to enter into negotiations with Moscow, while Ukraine attributed that refusal to Russia putting conditions on the table before negotiating. rejected for Ukraine.
However, the two sides sat for negotiations for the first time, on Monday, February 28, in Gomel, on the Belarusian border, and a second round of talks was held on Thursday, March 3, while the two sides held a third round of talks in Belarus on Monday, March 7. The three rounds of negotiations ended without a noticeable change on the ground.
The head of the Russian delegation said that his country’s expectations from the third round of negotiations “did not materialize”, but indicated that meetings with Ukraine would continue, while the Ukrainian delegation spoke of a slight progress in negotiations with the Russians on “safe corridors.”
Prior to that, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky signed, on February 28, a decree on his country’s application to join the European Union, in a move that did not find Russian opposition, as the issue of Kyiv’s accession to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization “NATO”.
Russian Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that the European Union is not a military-political bloc, noting that the issue of Kyiv’s accession to the union does not fall within the framework of strategic security issues, but falls within a different framework.
At the international level, the United Nations General Assembly voted, on Wednesday, 2 March, to condemn the Russian war on Ukraine, with 141 countries approving the draft resolution, while only 5 countries rejected the issue of condemning Russia, while 35 countries around the world abstained.
Meanwhile, the Ukrainian authorities have imposed martial law throughout the country since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukrainian territory.
Before starting a military operation against Ukraine, Russia had always rejected the West’s accusations of preparing for an “invasion” of Ukraine, and said that it was not a party to the internal Ukrainian conflict.
However, this was not convincing for Western circles, which were basing their accusations of Moscow of preparing for the invasion of Ukraine, on Russia’s deployment of about 100,000 Russian soldiers a few weeks ago on its borders with Ukraine, a country close to the West, saying that “this invasion could take place in any time”.
But Russia justified this at the time that it only wanted to ensure its security, at a time when Washington sent military reinforcements to Eastern Europe and Ukraine as well.