War in Ukraine: Russia carries out new strikes in Ukraine before emergency G7

Russia claimed responsibility for new « massive » strikes on Ukraine’s infrastructure on Tuesday, the day after large-scale bombings that sparked Western outcry.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is due to attend the emergency virtual G7 meeting scheduled for 12 p.m. GMT (8 a.m. EDT) on Tuesday to focus on the Russian offensive.

In the morning, Russia continued firing against its neighbour, hitting energy installations in the West far from the front. Lviv City Hall said the city was 30% deprived of electricity.

The city of Zaporijjia (south), not far from the front and pounded by Russian bombardments in recent weeks, suffered on Tuesday, according to the Ukrainian authorities, a salvo of twelve S-300 type missiles which fell on « civilian » infrastructure causing one death.

The Russian Ministry of Defense welcomed that these “massive strikes” against “targets of military command and the energy system of Ukraine” had “achieved their objective”.

In kyiv, the warning sirens sounded for more than five hours in a row in the morning, but unlike Monday, no missile fell on the Ukrainian capital.

The bombardments were immediately on a smaller scale than on Monday, when dozens of missiles, rockets and drones fell on Ukraine in retaliation for the attack, « terrorist » according to Vladimir Putin, which partially destroyed the bridge connecting Russia to Crimea annexed in 2014.

power outages

Highly symbolic and strategic, this viaduct is used to supply Russian troops in southern Ukraine where kyiv forces are conducting a counter-offensive.

The strikes targeted Ukrainian military, energy and communication infrastructure, but also hit purely civilian sites, such as a university, a playground, parks or a pedestrian bridge in the city center. The latest toll reports 19 dead and 105 injured in the country.

More than 300 localities remained without electricity throughout the country.

The electricity operator serving the capital, DTEK, announced that, due to a lack of sufficient power, « from Tuesday » regular power cuts would affect different neighborhoods as winter approaches and Ukrainians fear water shortages. , heating and electricity.

For his part, Vladimir Putin is due to receive the head of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Rafael Grossi, to talk in particular about the security of the Ukrainian plant in Zaporijjia, which Russia has been occupying militarily since March, and which it appropriated itself when it claimed at the end of September the annexation of four Ukrainian regions.

For months, Russians and Ukrainians have accused each other of shooting in the area and risking causing a nuclear accident.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu called for a ceasefire « as soon as possible » between the belligerents, in a television interview. And a Turkish official told AFP on Tuesday that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan would meet Vladimir Putin on Wednesday in Astana, on the sidelines of a regional summit in the capital of Kazakhstan.

The only Russian-Ukrainian progress of the day, kyiv announced that it had recovered the bodies of 62 soldiers killed, some of whom were among the victims of a strike in July against the infamous prison of Olenivka, in territory under Russian control. Moscow and kyiv accuse each other of this bombardment which caused dozens of deaths.

Westerners have reaffirmed their support for kyiv after the wave of bombings, the American Joe Biden promising « advanced systems » of anti-aircraft defense, just like Germany. London has promised not to “falter one iota in (its) determination to help” Ukraine win.

The European Union has called Russian bombings of civilian targets akin to « war crimes ». UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres denounced « an unacceptable escalation ».

The Ukrainian president hammered to him that his country “cannot be intimidated”.

Threat from Belarus

Mr Putin on Sunday accused Ukraine of having organized the explosion which destroyed part of the Crimean bridge, built at great expense. kyiv has neither confirmed nor denied its involvement.

The attack on the bridge came after a series of recent Russian military setbacks in northeastern, eastern and southern Ukraine, in the face of a Ukrainian army strong in Western arms supplies.

A sign of these difficulties, Vladimir Putin ordered the mobilization of hundreds of thousands of reservists in September, a decision which caused the massive departure of Russians from the country.

He promised Monday other « severe » replies in the event of new Ukrainian attacks against Russia, but without renewing his threat to use nuclear weapons made in September.

The only ally of Moscow in this war, while having refrained from sending his troops to Ukraine, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko accused kyiv of preparing an attack against his country, announcing the deployment of Russian-Belarusian troops as a result, without specifying their location.

On Tuesday, Minsk assured that this joint force was « purely defensive ». Belarus loaned its territory to the Russian army to enable the invasion of Ukraine in February.

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