Ukraine war: US condemns ‘brutal’ Russian strikes on Ukraine – BBC
Russia has been widely condemned after bombarding cities across Ukraine, including launching missile strikes on the centre of Kyiv for the first time.
The US said the “brutal” attacks had hit non-military targets, including an university and children’s playground, and promised ongoing military aid.
United Nations chief Antonio Guterres said he was “deeply shocked”.
Vladimir Putin said the particular attacks were retaliation for Saturday’s explosion on a key bridge linking Russian federation to Crimea.
Ukraine says 83 missiles were launched of which more than 43 were shot down.
In a defiant video, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky said that “Ukraine cannot be intimidated. It can only be more united. ”
The deadly barrage included strikes on the cities of Lviv, Kharkiv, Dnipro and Zaporizhzhia, and were some of the worst Ukraine has seen for months.
At least 14 people were killed plus scores more were injured, officials said.
Several regions were left without electricity and water after missiles hit energy infrastructure.
Residents in the capital Kyiv said Russia appeared to be targeting civilian areas which were busy with Monday morning commuters, which includes the children’s playground, university and the popular Taras Shevchenko park.
Antonio Guterres described the strikes as “another unacceptable escalation of the war” for which civilians had been paying the highest price.
The EU said a war crime had been committed, while European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen said Russia stood with regard to terror and brutality.
US President Joe Biden was one of many foreign leaders to speak with President Zelensky, and he “pledged to continue providing Ukraine with the support needed to defend itself, including advanced air defence systems”, the White House said.
Mr Biden said the attacks demonstrated “the utter brutality” of Putin’s “illegal war”.
After the phone call, President Zelensky vowed to strengthen Ukraine’s armed forces and “make the battlefield even more painful regarding the enemy”.
China and India, which usually have not condemned the particular war, called for the de-escalation.
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- BACKGROUND: Who – or what – blew up the Crimean bridge?
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Speaking at the UN General Assembly in New York, Sergiy Kyslytsya, Ukraine’s Ambassador to the UN, stated his family had been in a residential area within Ukraine when it has been attacked by the latest Russian missiles and they were unable to go to a bomb shelter.
He said Russia had already killed some of his relatives, calling it “a terrorist state” that must be deterred in the strongest possible ways to prevent further atrocities. He added that Russia’s delegation to the UN left “a trail associated with blood” whenever it entered the General Assembly hall.
The General Assembly is holding an emergency meeting following Russia’s latest attacks. Although the session was convened because of the particular Kremlin’s annexation of four partly-occupied Ukrainian regions following sham referendums, it has been overshadowed by this morning’s assaults.
Ruskies missiles began hitting targets across Ukraine around the morning rush hour upon Monday, in the most widespread bombardment of the war.
Ihor Zhovka, deputy head of President Zelensky’s office, said they were designed to sow panic.
The particular strikes were more intense than had previously been seen, he told the particular BBC, and in some ways resembled the early days of the war.
This individual added that this had not come as a surprise, and was a sign of things to come during the “very difficult” winter ahead.
Russia’s President Putin mentioned the attacks were within retaliation to Saturday’s explosion on the bridge linking the occupied Crimea peninsula to Russia which he blamed on Ukraine.
Ukraine has not confirmed it was behind that strike. Mr Zhovka said he did not really entirely believe that the Russian attacks were a retaliation, as Kyiv has been hit before.
Mr Putin warned he was ready in order to authorise more “severe” episodes, while deputy head of the Russian Security Council Dmitry Medvedev said that “the first episode offers been played. There will be others”.
Meanwhile, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko – the close ally of Chief executive Putin – has agreed to deploy his forces to link up along with Russian soldiers at Belarus’ border with Ukraine in response to what this individual said was a threat to his country from Kyiv.
“We need to figure out what else needs to be done to strengthen the security associated with our state, given the particular rapidly changing environment, ” he said according in order to comments carried within the state-run Belta news agency.
Lukashenko, who held an one-on-one meeting with President Putin within St Petersburg, said he had been informed through unofficial channels of a “Crimean Bridge 2” being planned against Belarus, a reference to Saturday’s explosion on a key bridge connecting Russia with Crimea.
Without offering any evidence, he said: “Ukraine is not just contemplating, but planning strikes on the territory of Belarus, ” adding that Kyiv was being “pushed by their patrons to unleash a war against Belarus” and Russia at the same time.
“We saw it, we knew it, we created battalion tactical groups, all of us practiced the defence of the southern border, which we are doing now, ” he said.
Mr Lukashenko has become increasingly reliant on Russia for economic, political and military assistance in recent years, and Russian causes used Belarus as the base when it began its invasion of Ukraine in February.