Update – France, Germany urges nationals to leave Ukraine

Lufthansa to suspend flights to Kyiv, Odessa from Monday
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BERLIN/FRANKFURT, Feb 19 (Reuters) – Germany’s foreign ministry on Saturday told German nationals to leave Ukraine now, as tensions between Russia and Ukraine increased further.

“German nationals are urged to leave the country now,” the ministry said in a statement. “A military confrontation is possible at any time.”

Other countries including Britain and the United States have also asked their nationals to depart immediately.

UPDATE – France also urged its citizens on Saturday to leave the Ukrainian regions of Kharkiv, Luhansk and Donetsk without delay after a rise in tensions following Russia’s military build-up near Ukraine.

A travel advisory issued on the French foreign ministry’s website also suggested French citizens in Ukraine should leave if they do not have urgent business there

Lufthansa to suspend flights to Kyiv, Odessa from Monday

Germany’s Lufthansa group is suspending flights to and from the Ukrainian cities of Kyiv and Odessa, a spokesperson said on Saturday amid growing fears of a possible Russian invasion.

The company, which owns Germany’s flagship carrier as well as Eurowings, Swiss, Brussels and Austrian Airlines, will conduct some last flights to those cities over the weekend before suspending flights from Monday until the end of the month, the spokesperson said.

It will continue to fly to the city of Lviv in western Ukraine where some countries have moved their embassies, the spokesperson said. Lufthansa is constantly monitoring the situation and will decide on further flights at a later date.

Lufthansa follows several other European airlines which have already canceled services to and from Ukraine.

Germany’s foreign ministry earlier on Saturday told its nationals to leave the countr

(Reporting by Kirsti Knolle)

Photo German Chancellor Olaf Scholz (R) and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky attend a photo opportunity ahead of bilateral talks at the 2022 Munich Security Conference in Munich, Germany, 19 February 2022. The conference, which brings together security experts, politicians and people of influence from across the globe, is taking place as Russian troops stand amassed on the Russian, Belarusian and Crimean borders to Ukraine, causing international fears of an imminent military invasion. EPA-EFE/ALEXANDRA BEIER / POOL

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