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Philadelphia Flyers goaltending prospect Ivan Fedotov, who reportedly was picked up by law enforcement in Russia last week ahead of a planned move to the U.S., is now at a remote military base in northern Russia, his agent said Tuesday.

The agent, J.P. Barry, spoke with The Associated Press amid speculation about Fedotov’s well-being.

The situation raised fresh concerns over whether Russian players will be willing or able to join National Hockey League teams that draft them this week as the war in Ukraine continues.

The 25-year-old Fedotov is considered one the top goaltenders in the world outside the NHL, and the Flyers expected him to compete for a spot on their roster next season. He won the silver medal as the Russians’ starting goalie at the Beijing Olympics in February and led CSKA Moscow to the Gagarin Cup as KHL champion.

He was a seventh-round pick of the Flyers in 2015 but has since played in Russia, with CSKA retaining his rights. The NHL and KHL do not have a transfer agreement for players and Fedotov was eligible to sign with Philadelphia in May only because he did not have an existing contract in Russia for next season.

CSKA, whose name translates to “Central Sports Club of the Army,” was founded as the Soviet army’s hockey team in 1946 and still has traditional ties to the military.

The first sign something had gone wrong for Fedotov came Friday. Russian media said he was picked up by law enforcement outside a hockey rink in his home city of St. Petersburg, where he’d been filming a documentary with a TV crew, and taken to a military enlistment center. Local news site Fontanka reported he was suspected of evading compulsory military service required of Russian men.

Alexei Ponomaryov, a lawyer representing Fedotov, told Russian news agency RIA Novosti on Saturday that Fedotov had been taken to a military hospital with apparent stress-induced gastritis. Ponomaryov said he and Fedotov’s relatives had not been allowed to visit.

The Russian Defense Ministry hasn’t commented on Fedotov’s location. Russian newspaper Sport Express published Monday what it said were photographs showing Fedotov at a military base in Severodvinsk, a naval city with shipyards on Russia’s north coast, though there have been conflicting reports about exactly where he is.

“We have a draft in line with the law, so any emotional commentaries would be utterly inappropriate,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Monday when asked about Fedotov’s case. “There are certain reasons for deferments and various ways of undergoing military service for athletes.”

Russia was aiming to conscript more than 130,000 men for a year of military service this spring. The law allows for 21-month alternative civil service in facilities like hospitals for those who object to military service, but requests can often be ignored. In theory, Russian men can be conscripted between the ages of 18 and 27, though some never serve at all.

Russians often seek to avoid or delay being drafted with medical or educational exemptions, and athletes are no different. Some arrange to be signed up with universities on years-long programs of distance learning while they continue their sports careers.

The military also has special units for elite-level athletes who can keep competing while they serve. The defense ministry boasted of numerous athletes with military ranks competing at recent Olympics in sports ranging from judo to skiing.

The NHL and Flyers general manager Chuck Fletcher have said the team is aware and investigating. As recently as last week, Fletcher said he expected Fedotov to compete for a spot on the roster next season.

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China launches long-range airstrike drills around Taiwan on fourth day of military exercises

(CNN)Chinese forces took part in drills focused on land attacks and long-range airstrikes around Taiwan on Sunday, its military said, on what was expected to be the final day of extensive exercises rolled out in response to a visit to the island by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The Eastern Theater Command of the Chinese military said on Sunday around noon local time that it "continued" live-fire drills in the waters and airspace around Taiwan "as planned.""The drills focused on joint fire land strikes and long-range air strike capabilities," the command said in a statement posted to its official account on the social media platform Weibo, without specifying whether the drills have ended.
    The exercises, planned to take place in six zones around the island, began Thursday and were scheduled to last until Sunday at noon local time in Beijing, Chinese state media reported.
      Does Taiwan have its own airspace? China sets military drills close to island after Pelosi visitTaiwan's Defense Ministry on Sunday said it detected multiple Chinese aircraft, naval vessels and drones operating around the Taiwan Strait that morning, in what it called a "simulated attack against the main island of Taiwan and Taiwan's naval vessels" -- a slight dial-up of language from Saturday when it said that Chinese military drills around the island could be a "possible simulated attack."Read MoreTaiwan's military "closely monitored" the situation and deployed aircraft and vessels to "appropriately" react to Chinese military drills around the island, the defense ministry added. It also said drones "intruded" outlying islands controlled by Taiwan. The ministry did not immediately provide an exact number of Chinese aircraft, vessels or drones that were detected on Sunday morning or say whether they crossed the sensitive median line in the Taiwan Strait that separates the island from the Chinese mainland.
        China announced the drills -- whose scale marks a significant escalation from past activities -- within an hour of the arrival of Pelosi and a congressional delegation in Taiwan on Tuesday evening. The stop, which was expected but not announced beforehand, was part of a larger Asia tour.Chinese officials had repeatedly warned Washington of unspecified repercussions in the lead-up to the expected trip. In addition to the drills, Beijing also launched a raft of diplomatic penalties, including canceling future phone calls between Chinese and US defense leaders and suspending bilateral climate talks.The Chinese Communist Party views self-governing Taiwan as its territory, despite never having controlled it, and has long vowed to "reunify" the island with the Chinese mainland -- by force if necessary. The previous days' drills had seen a number of air and maritime activities around the island, including the launch of 11 ballistic missiles on Thursday -- some of which flew over the island of Taiwan and landed in Japan's exclusive economic zone. That marked the first time China had sent missiles over the island.On Saturday, 14 vessels and 20 planes operated by the Chinese military had been detected around the Strait, according to Taiwan's defense ministry. Of the 20 aircraft, 14 crossed the median line, it added.The previous day, Friday, 68 Chinese warplanes were reported in the Taiwan Strait, according to Taiwan's Defense Ministry. Of those, 49 entered Taiwan's air defense identification zone -- a buffer of airspace commonly referred to as an ADIZ. That was just a few planes short of the record set last year when 56 Chinese warplanes entered the ADIZ on the same day.Taiwan says multiple Chinese aircraft and vessels spotted in possible simulated attackTaiwan's Premier Su Tseng-chang on Sunday reiterated Taiwan's condemnation of the drills."Not only Taiwan but other countries in the region as well as freedom-loving countries like the US and so on have vehemently protested and condemned China's arrogant military operations disrupting regional peace and stability," he said during a press engagement."We call on the Chinese government to not flex its military muscles and disrupt regional peace."A US National Security Council spokesperson on Saturday called China's recent military activities around Taiwan a "significant escalation in China's efforts to change the status quo." "They are provocative, irresponsible, and raise the risk of miscalculation," the spokesperson said. "They are also at odds with our long-standing goal of maintaining peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, which is what the world expects."US allies have also come forward to condemn China's actions, including in a joint statement issued Friday by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong, and Japanese Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa following their meeting on the sidelines of the ASEAN Foreign Ministers' Meeting in Cambodia.The diplomats "condemned (China's) launch of ballistic missiles," including those the Japanese government said landed in its exclusive economic zone, for "raising tension and destabilizing the region," and called on China "to immediately cease the military exercises," according to the statement released by the US State Department.
          China hit back on Saturday evening, with its embassy in Australia calling the US "the biggest saboteur and destabilizer of peace in the Taiwan Strait" and disputing the "legal basis" for Japan's claims regarding the missile landings."China is the victim of political provocation from the US. The actions taken by the Chinese government to safeguard state sovereignty and territorial integrity and curb the separatist activities are legitimate and justified," a statement from the embassy read.

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