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Explosions rock Kyiv again as Russians rain fire on Ukraine – Press Telegram

By DAVID KEYTON and INNA VARENYTSIA

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) – Russia hit targets from virtually one end of Ukraine to the other Thursday, including Kiev, bombing the city while the UN chief was visiting in the boldest attack on the capital since Moscow forces they withdrew weeks ago.

At least one person was killed and several were injured in the attack on Kiev, some of whom were trapped in the rubble when two buildings were hit, rescue officials said.

The bombing came just an hour after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy held a press conference with UN Secretary-General António Guterres, who said Ukraine had become “an epicenter of pain and unbearable pain.” A spokesman said Guterres and his team were safe.

Meanwhile, there have been explosions across the country, in Polonne in the west, Chernihiv near the border with Belarus and Fastiv, a major railway center southwest of the capital. The mayor of Odessa, southern Ukraine, said the rockets were intercepted by air defenses.

Ukrainian authorities have also reported intense Russian fires in the Donbas – the eastern industrial core that the Kremlin says is its main target – and near Kharkiv, a city in the northeast outside the Donbas that is considered key to the offensive.

In the ruined port city of Mariupol in the south, Ukrainian fighters hiding in the steel plant that represents the latest source of resistance said the concentrated bombings during the night killed and injured more people. And authorities have warned that a lack of drinking water within the city could lead to outbreaks of deadly diseases such as cholera and dysentery.

In Zaporizhzhia, a crucial transit station for tens of thousands of Ukrainians fleeing Mariupol, an 11-year-old boy was among at least three people injured in a rocket attack that authorities say was the first to hit a residential area of southern city since the war began. The pieces of glass cut the child’s leg to the bone.

Vadym Vodostoyev, the boy’s father, said: “It only takes a second and you are left with nothing.”

The new attacks came as Guterres was investigating the destruction of small towns outside the capital that saw some of the worst horrors of the first attack of the war. He condemned the atrocities committed in cities such as Bucha, where evidence of mass killings of civilians was found after Russia withdrew in early April in the face of unexpectedly harsh resistance.

“Where there is a war, the highest price is paid by civilians,” lamented the UN chief.

Meanwhile, the Ukrainian prosecutor accused 10 Russian soldiers of being “involved in the torture of peaceful people” in Bucha. Attorney General Iryna Venediktova did not say her office had filed criminal charges and asked the public for help in gathering evidence. Russia denies targeting civilians.

In the attack on Kiev, explosions shook the city and flames erupted through the windows of at least two buildings – including a residential building – in the capital, which has been relatively unharmed in recent weeks. Plumes of smoke could be seen over the city.

The blasts in the Shevchenkivsky district in northwestern Kiev occurred as residents returned to the city. Cafes and other businesses reopened, and a growing number of people were outside, enjoying the spring weather.

It was not immediately clear how Guterres’ attack was.

“I was shocked to learn that two rockets exploded in the city where I am,” the UN chief told the BBC. “So this is a dramatic war, and we absolutely need to end this war and we absolutely need to have a solution for this war.”

Getting a full picture of the battle taking place in the east has been difficult because airstrikes and artillery shelling have made journalists too dangerous to move. Several journalists were killed in the war, which is now in its third month.

In addition, both Ukraine and Moscow-backed rebels fighting in the east have introduced strict restrictions on reporting from the combat zone.

Western officials say the Kremlin’s apparent goal is to take the Donbas by surrounding and crushing Ukrainian forces in the north, south and east.

But so far, Russian troops and their allied separatist forces appear to have made only small gains, taking several small towns as they try to advance in relatively small groups against firm Ukrainian resistance.

Russian military units were maimed in a failed attempt to storm Kiev and had to regroup and regroup. Some analysts say the delay in launching a full-fledged offensive may reflect the decision of Russian President Vladimir Putin to wait until his forces are ready for a decisive battle, rather than rush and risk another failure that could shake his government in the midst of worsening economic conditions. at home because of Western sanctions.

Many observers suspect that Putin wants to be able to claim a great victory in the east for Victory Day, May 9, one of the proudest holidays on the Russian calendar, marking the defeat of Nazi Germany during World War II.

As Russia presses its offensive, civilians are once again at their worst.

“It’s not just scary. It’s when your stomach contracts because of the pain,” said Kharkiv resident Tatiana Pirogova. “When they shoot during the day, it’s still fine, but when night comes, I can’t describe how scary it is.”

The Ukrainian army said Russian troops were under heavy fire in several parts of the Donbas and that for the past 24 hours Ukrainian forces had repelled six attacks in the region.

Four civilians were killed in a heavy bombing of residential areas in the Luhansk region of Donbas, according to the regional governor.

Columns of smoke could be seen rising at different points in the Donetsk region of the Donbas, and sirens and artillery could be heard.

In Mariupol, a video posted online by Ukraine’s Azov regiment inside the steel industry showed people combing through the rubble to remove the dead and help the wounded. The regiment said the Russians attacked a makeshift underground hospital and its operating room, killing an unspecified number of people. The video could not be independently verified.

An estimated 100,000 people were trapped in Mariupol.

“Deadly epidemics could erupt in the city due to lack of centralized water and sewer supply,” the council said in the Telegram messaging app. He denounced the decaying bodies under the rubble and a “catastrophic” shortage of drinking water and food.

There were also heavy blows in the Russian region of Belgorod, bordering Ukraine, but there was no immediate explanation. In recent days, sites of fuel and ammunition on Russian soil have been hit by explosions and fires, and suspicions have fallen on Ukraine.

Ukraine has urged its allies to send even more military equipment to defend itself from the Russians. U.S. President Joe Biden has asked Congress for an additional $ 33 billion to help Ukraine.

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Associated Press journalists Jon Gambrell and Yuras Karmanau in Lviv, Mstyslav Chernov in Kharkiv, Yesica Fisch in Sloviansk, and AP staff around the world contributed to this report.

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Follow AP coverage of the war in Ukraine: https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine

Explosions rock Kyiv again as Russians rain fire on Ukraine – Press Telegram Source link Explosions rock Kyiv again as Russians rain fire on Ukraine – Press Telegram

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