What We Know so far about Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine
On the command of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Russia has launched a large-scale military strike on Ukraine, its southern neighbor.
There have been reports of attacks on Ukrainian military facilities all around the country, as well as Russian convoys coming in from all sides.
Here’s what we’ve learned so far:
Putin orders attack
Putin ordered a “military operation” in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region in a televised speech at 05:55 Moscow time (02:55 GMT). Many Russian-speaking Ukrainians live in this area. Since 2014, Russian-backed separatists have captured and run parts of it. He stated that Russia was intervening in self-defense. He stated that Russia would demilitarize and “de-Nazify” Ukraine rather than occupying it.
He asked Ukrainian soldiers in the conflict zone to lay down their guns and return home, but warned that conflicts would inevitably occur and that it was only a matter of time before they did.
He also stated that any outside intervention to counter the Russian attack will be greeted with a “immediate” retaliation.
Explosions heard all around the country
Loud booms were reported in Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, and Kramatorsk, in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine, according to BBC report. Blasts were also heard in Odesa, a southern port city.
Russian missile strikes against Ukraine’s infrastructure and border guards, according to Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky.
Russia’s defense ministry has denied striking Ukrainian cities, claiming that “high-precision weaponry” were used to target military facilities, air defense, and air forces.
Tanks and troops have enter Ukraine
Ukraine claims that tanks and troops have rushed into the country at sites along its eastern, southern, and northern borders.
According to Ukraine’s border guard agency (DPSU), Russian military convoys have crossed from Belarus into Ukraine’s northern Chernihiv district and from Russia into Ukraine’s northern Sumy region.
Belarus has been a long-time Russian ally. The little country is referred to as Russia’s “client state” by analysts. Convoys have also arrived in the eastern Luhansk and Kharkiv regions, as well as in the Kherson region, which Russia took from Ukraine in 2014.
According to the DPSU, artillery bombardment preceded the Russian advance, and border guards were injured. Troops have also been reported landing by sea in the southern Black Sea port cities of Mariupol and Odesa. A big explosion was reported in the city center of Odesa, and a British resident informed the BBC that many people were fleeing.
A total of ten individuals are believed to have been murdered, six of whom were killed in an air strike near Kyiv’s capital, Brovary. A guy was also killed in shelling outside of Kharkiv, Ukraine’s largest city in the east.
According to a Ukrainian presidential adviser, more than 40 soldiers have died and dozens more have been injured. Ukraine claimed to have killed 50 Russian soldiers and shot down six Russian planes, although this has yet to be confirmed.
Ukraine says it is retaliating
Ukraine’s military claims to have shot down five Russian planes and a helicopter, as well as inflicting injuries on invading troops.
“Remain calm and confidence in Ukraine’s defenders,” the Ukrainian army say in a statement. Russia’s defense ministry, on the other hand, has disputed that their planes were shot down.
Ukraine has proclaimed martial law, putting the military in charge for the time being, and has severed diplomatic ties with Russia. President Zelensky urged Russians to oppose the invasion and stated that guns would be supplied to anyone in Ukraine who requested them.
Meanwhile, Dmytro Kuleba, Russia’s foreign minister, pleaded with the international community to inflict crippling sanctions, including barring Russia from using the international Swift financial transfer system.
Residents are looking for shelter
Massive traffic bottlenecks have formed on Kyiv’s expressways as residents escape the city. Testimonies on social media show an increasing sense of terror, with some people claiming they are being hustled into bomb shelters and basements. People were seen praying in the streets on television.
Many people have taken refuge in Kyiv’s underground metro stations. Long lines can also be found at gas stations and cash ATMs. People in Kramatorsk, in the eastern Donetsk region, said they were not expecting such a full-fledged assault, according to the BBC’s Eastern European Correspondent Sarah Rainsford.
“Last night, people in this city were out on the streets, waving the Ukrainian flag. They claimed ownership of the land. They have no where to go “she revealed. “This is exactly what people have been expecting and waiting for, yet no one here can believe it’s finally happening.”
The price of oil has increased
For the first time in more than seven years, oil prices surpassed $100.
Meanwhile, the rouble, Russia’s currency, hit an all-time low against the dollar and the euro. Within minutes of opening, the London Stock Exchange’s main FTSE 100 index had down more than 200 points, or 2.7 percent.
World condemns Putin
Putin has “chosen a premeditated war that would result in a terrible loss of life and human suffering,” according to US President Joe Biden.
On Thursday, he said he will speak to Americans about the repercussions Russia would suffer. Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom stated that Vladimir Putin’s “hideous and cruel enterprise must fail.”
“I cannot believe this is being done in your name, or that you truly want the pariah reputation it will bring to the Putin administration,” he remarked to Russians. He assured Ukrainians that the United Kingdom was “on your side.”
Russia’s “reckless action,” according to Nato Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, “endangers many civilian lives.” According to EU foreign policy leader Josep Borrell, Europe is “in the midst of its darkest hours since World War II.”
Former US President Donald Trump, on the other hand, claims that Putin took advantage of American “weakness.” He called Fox News and said he didn’t think Putin “intended to do this at first.” “I believe he wanted to do something and negotiate, but things got worse and worse, and he saw the weakness,” Trump explained.
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