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War in Ukraine | Threats in the north, “dangerous” situation in the east

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After announcing that it wanted to focus on the east of the country, the Russian army threatened on Wednesday to strike command centers in the capital of Ukraine, Kyiv. In the east of the country, airstrikes have continued and the chances of a short-term ceasefire are nil, estimates the UN.

Targeted command centers

The Russian military on Wednesday threatened to strike command centers in the northern Ukrainian capital Kyiv, accusing Ukraine of firing and sabotage on Russian territory. Moscow had however given up taking the capital at the end of March, wanting to concentrate on the east of the country. “We are seeing sabotage attempts and strikes by Ukrainian forces on targets on the territory of the Russian Federation,” said Igor Konashenkov, spokesman for the Russian Ministry of Defense. If such events continue, strikes will be carried out by the Russian army on decision-making centers, including in Kyiv, which the Russian army has refrained from doing so far. »

Civilians killed in Kharkiv


PHOTO SERGEY BOBOK, AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

Firefighters try to control the flames in a warehouse hit by a missile strike on the outskirts of Kharkiv on Wednesday.

In the east of the country, the Ukrainians had no respite on Wednesday. Four civilians have been killed and at least ten injured in Russian strikes on Kharkiv, the region’s governor has announced. “During the day, the occupiers continued to shell residential areas of Kharkiv,” Oleg Synegoubov announced on Telegram. Kharkiv was the target of heavy fighting for several days at the start of the Russian invasion on February 24, but still remained under the control of Ukrainian forces.

Flee the East

The Ukrainian government has called on the population of the east of the country to flee as soon as possible, fearing a strong Russian offensive imminent. Ukraine, however, warned it would not open any humanitarian corridors on Wednesday as the Russians “blocked buses” and “violated the ceasefire” in some areas, making the situation “dangerous”. Russian aerial bombardment of Mariupol also continued on Wednesday, where the port and a vast metallurgical complex were targeted, according to the country’s military.

A Russian ship on fire


PHOTO ALEXEY PAVLISHAK, REUTERS ARCHIVES

The Russian warship Moskvaat the port of Sevastopol, Crimea, in November 2021

Ukrainian missile fire caused a fire on board a Russian warship, the Moskva, the Ukrainian authorities said on Wednesday evening. “He burns with intensity. Now. And with this rough sea, it is impossible to know when they will be able to receive help, “said the adviser to the Ukrainian president, Oleksiï Arestovitch, assuring that “510 crew members” were on board. Moscow instead claims that the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet was “severely damaged” by an ammunition explosion caused by a fire.

Luhansk region virtually conquered, say pro-Russian separatists

The leader of the pro-Russian separatists in Luhansk, Donbass, said on Wednesday that his troops now control most of this Ukrainian region. During a press conference, Leonid Passechnik affirmed that “80 to 90%” of the Luhansk region had been conquered.

A crime scene ”


PHOTO VOLODYMYR PETROV, REUTERS

International Criminal Court prosecutor Karim Khan visits Boutcha on Wednesday

The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Karim Khan, made it clear on Wednesday: Ukraine has become a real “crime scene”. During a visit to Boutcha, a town that has become a symbol of the atrocities of the conflict, he said he had “good reason to believe that crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court” had been committed.

No chance of obtaining a ceasefire, judges the UN

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said there was no chance at the moment of securing a humanitarian ceasefire in Ukraine, as the UN wanted. But he told reporters on Wednesday that the UN had made a number of proposals to Russia on the possibility of local ceasefires, humanitarian corridors and the evacuation of civilians. “We are awaiting a response,” he said.

Canadian senators sanctioned

Russia announced on Wednesday that 87 Canadian senators would be banned from entering its territory, in retaliation for a similar measure taken by Ottawa to sanction members of the Upper House of the Russian Parliament. Russian diplomacy also sanctioned 398 members of the United States Congress.

New aid from the United States

Armored vehicles, artillery, helicopters: US President Joe Biden gave the green light on Wednesday to massive new military aid worth $800 million to Ukraine. In addition, Joe Biden has attacked Russian President Vladimir Putin with ever more virulence, calling him a “war criminal” and a “butcher” who should not “stay in power”.

With Agence France-Presse and the Associated Press

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