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The Informer: Putin fronts rally, cost of living key to budget

Russian President Vladimir Putin has promised his country's
Russian President Vladimir Putin has promised his country's "special military operation" aims will be achieved. Picture: Shutterstock

The Russian president fronted a rally in Moscow on Friday, after weeks of making himself scarce as Russia's invasion of Ukraine continues, taking hundreds of civilian lives.

Vladimir Putin appeared before tens of thousands at the centre of Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium, promising all the Kremlin's aims for what it has told citizens is a "special military operation" will be achieved.

"We know what we need to do, how to do it and at what cost. And we will absolutely accomplish all of our plans," Putin, 69, told the rally from a stage decked out with slogans such as "For a world without Nazism" and "For our president".

Coverage of his speech on state television was unexpectedly interrupted by what the Kremlin said was a technical problem with the server.

The US has warned Chinese President Xi Jinping of "consequences" if Beijing gives material support to Russia's invasion, the White House says, in a video call lasting under two hours. China's foreign ministry said the president told US President Joe Biden the war must end as soon as possible and called on NATO nations to hold a dialogue with Moscow.

At home, Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg promised his fourth budget and third pandemic budget would chart the path to balancing the government's books while acknowledging many Australians are finding it hard to meet basic costs.

The Treasurer told Australian Community Media that uncertainty created by repeat natural disasters and war in Europe, created more incentive to rein in spending and retain "fiscal firepower".

The Big Rainbow is set to join the likes of the Big Banana as a popular tourist attraction and people are being asked to vote on where they think it should go.

Project ambassador Nic Steepe said he would love to see it in the Central West, with Bathurst on the cards.

"It would have meant the world to me growing up in the Central West to have such a visible sign of inclusion and really help affirm who I was," Mr Steepe said.

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This story Putin fronts rally, cost of living key to budget first appeared on The Canberra Times.