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Ukrainian officials had projected a more optimistic tone for the talks than on previous, fruitless occasions. But early Monday evening, Mykhailo Podolyak, a Ukrainian negotiator and presidential adviser, said on Twitter that the talks were on a “technical pause.” The long-anticipated convoy of cars that would evacuate trapped Mariupol residents and deliver crucial food and medicine to the besieged city was also stalled Monday, with Ukrainian officials accusing Russian troops of repeatedly violating a cease-fire agreement.
After reports from U.S. officials that an increasingly isolated Russia has asked China for military equipment and aid — an allegation both countries denied — the White House warned Beijing that there would be “significant consequences" for violating sanctions against Moscow. National security adviser Jake Sullivan issued a direct warning to his Chinese counterpart during a seven-hour meeting in Rome on Monday and expressed "deep concerns about China’s alignment with Russia at this time.”