(Kyiv) Russia carried out an attack on a new military factory near Kyiv on Saturday that left one dead, realizing its threat to step up the bombardment of the Ukrainian capital after it damaged its naval fleet flagship Black had lost.
Posted at 7:31 am
Updated at 10:13am
what you need to know
- Russia bombed an arms factory near Kyiv;
- British Prime Minister Boris Johnson is banned from entering Russia;
- Fighting continues in Mariupol and small pockets in eastern Ukraine;
- More than five million people have fled the country since the Russian invasion began on February 24.
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said on Telegram that after the strike in the Darnytsky district on the outskirts of the city, one person was killed and “several” were hospitalized. The factory notably makes tanks.
According to an AFP journalist, a large number of soldiers and police were on the scene after the attack, preventing access to the complex from which smoke was billowing.
The Russian Defense Ministry claimed that the strike “destroyed production buildings at an arms factory in Kyiv”.
As early as Friday, a factory in the Kyiv region was producing the Neptun anti-ship missiles, which the Ukrainians say they used to fire at the ship Moscow in the Black Sea, has been the target of a Russian attack.
The capital region had been relatively spared since the Russian army withdrew from the area at the end of March.
But the downfall Moscowthe flagship of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, which the Pentagon says was hit by two Ukrainian missiles, has angered Moscow.
“The number and scale of rocket attacks on sites in Kyiv will increase in response to all terrorist attacks and acts of sabotage on Russian territory by the nationalist regime in Kyiv,” Russia’s Security Ministry warned on Friday.
Moscow also announced on Saturday that British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and several other senior officials have been banned from entering the country in response to British sanctions against Moscow over its military operation in Ukraine.
Russia ‘will not forgive’
The mayor of Kyiv has again urged residents who left the city not to return and to stay in a “safe place”.
But the residents of the Ukrainian capital made massive use of the first bright day of spring on Friday for a walk or a drink on the terrace.
“It’s our first time back downtown, we wanted to see public transport working again to accommodate the crowds. Seeing all these people makes me feel so good,” says Nataliya Makrieva, a 43-year-old veterinarian.
Ukraine also announced that on Saturday morning it had destroyed four cruise missiles fired by Russian planes fired from neighboring Belarus in the Lviv region (west), which was generally spared violence.
Russia has not officially recognized this Moscow was sunk by Ukrainian missiles.
“We are fully aware that we will not be forgiven for the destruction”. Moscow and hence this blow to Moscow’s “imperial ambitions,” said the spokeswoman for the Military Command of Southern Ukraine, Natalia Goumenyuk, on Friday.
Kyiv fears a nuclear attack
During the war in the 52ndand Day doesn’t seem to falter, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy ruled on Friday that “the whole world” should be “concerned” about the risk that his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, cornered by his military setbacks in Ukraine , will resort to a tactic nuclear weapon.
He echoed statements made by US foreign intelligence chief William Burns, who had assessed the day before that such a threat should not be “taken lightly”.
According to Zelensky, around 2,500 to 3,000 Ukrainian soldiers died during the war, while Russia said it would suffer 19,000 to 20,000 casualties. The Ukrainian President added that around 10,000 Ukrainian soldiers were injured and it is “difficult to say how many of them will survive”.
In a video message, Mr. Zelensky also renewed his appeal to Westerners to increase their military aid.
In a phone call with US Army Chief of Staff Mark Milley, his Ukrainian counterpart Valery Zaluzhny also insisted on the urgent need for arms and ammunition.
But loud Washington PostRussia this week issued a formal complaint to the United States, warning the US government of “unpredictable consequences” if its military aid to Ukraine continues to increase.
In a diplomatic note, Moscow warns Washington and NATO against sending “more sensitive” weapons to Ukraine, judging that such military equipment “spreads fuel on the fire”.
In this context, Berlin announced on Friday that it was ready to release more than one billion euros in military aid to Ukraine.
In doing so, the German government wants to respond to the growing criticism from the Ukrainian authorities, but also from some partners in the European Union, of the evident lack of armaments support in Kyiv, to the point of complacency towards Moscow.
In northeastern Ukraine, a Russian fire on buses evacuating residents of the Kharkiv region (northeast) killed 10 people, including a seven-month-old infant, and wounded 35, local authorities said on Friday, according to local authorities.
An official at the Russian National Defense Center, Mikhail Mizintsev, claimed the authorities in Kyiv were planning a “new egregious provocation” to accuse Russian forces of committing war crimes.
According to him, Ukrainian troops are preparing to hit civilians who have gathered at the Lozova station with a Tochka-U missile in an attempt to flee the fighting in the Kharkiv region.
Moscow has repeatedly blamed Kyiv for deadly attacks on Ukrainian civilians, such as in Kramatorsk and Mariupol.
Strikes in the Donbass
In the largest region of the Donbass, that of Donetsk, where “fighting is going on along the entire front line”, three people were killed and seven injured, the Ukrainian Council Presidency announced on Friday.
The other region of this mining basin, that of Luhansk, was the scene of 24 bombings, leaving two dead and two wounded, according to the same source.
During the night from Friday to Saturday, the mayor of the city of Aleksandria, around 300 km south-east of Kyiv, announced on Facebook that a Russian missile had hit his city’s airport without causing any immediate injuries.
The governor of the Luhansk region, Serguiï Gaïdaï, sent a telegram asking the residents to leave. “While there is an opportunity, evacuate,” he wrote.
Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk announced on Saturday that nine humanitarian corridors would be established, including from Mariupol, which Russia is struggling for full control of.
The heaviest human toll of the war was recorded at this point in time in this strategic port city in the south-east. The Ukrainian authorities spoke of around 20,000 dead.
Quoted from agency UNIAN, Mme Veretchouk also stated that Russia was holding 1,000 civilians and 700 Ukrainian military prisoners. About 700 Russian soldiers are imprisoned in Ukraine.
More than five million people have fled Ukraine since February 24, according to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.