Putin delays surprise speech; Ukraine’s allies say they will not accept referendums in Russian-held areas

Russian-backed officials in several parts of Ukraine have announced plans to hold referenda on joining Russia.

Ukraine has slammed the upcoming votes as fake attempt to legitimize Russia’s invasion and slammed the prospect of “sham” ballots.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has called on Russian producers of military equipment to up their production and supplies to Russian troops.

Putin was also set to give a major speech to the country on Tuesday — only to later postpone it until Wednesday without explanation.

The war “isn’t going too well” for Russia, U.S. Army Gen. Mark Milley said from Poland, adding that this could make Moscow’s reactions less certain and that U.S. forces in Europe need to maintain alertness.