Twenty dead as Russia rains a missile on Kharkiv MIGMG News

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Russian forces have pounded Ukraine’s second-largest city, Kharkiv, and the surrounding countryside with missiles, killing at least 20 people in what Kyiv described as an attempt to force it to withdraw resources from the main battlefield to protect civilians from attacks.

Inside Russia, a fire broke out at an oil refinery just eight kilometers from the Ukrainian border, after what the refinery described as a cross-border attack by two drones.

In the main battlefield city of Severodonetsk, where Russia has claimed Ukrainian forces have been besieged since last week, scenes filmed by an independent journalist make it clear that the battle is far from over, as Ukrainian forces have managed to resupply their garrison by crossing a river in inflatable buoys. .

The Russian strikes on Kharkiv, throughout Tuesday and continuing into Wednesday morning, were the worst in weeks in the region where normal life has returned since Ukraine pushed Russian forces back in a major counterattack last month.

The bombing was by Russian forces. Perhaps it was multiple rocket launchers. It was the impact of the missile, Kharkiv prosecutor Mikhailo Martosh told Reuters amid the rubble of houses that were bombed on Tuesday in a rural area on the outskirts of the city.

Medical workers carried the body of an elderly woman from the rubble of a burnt-out garage to a nearby truck.

She was 85 years old. Child of War (World War II). Her grandson Mikita said: She survived one war, but she did not succeed in this war. “There is nowhere to flee to. Especially the grandmother herself, she didn’t want to go anywhere from here.”

Ukrainian authorities said 15 people were killed and 16 wounded on Tuesday in the Kharkiv region, and regional governor Oleh Senegubov described shelling on Wednesday morning that killed at least five others.

“Russian forces are now striking the city of Kharkiv in the same way they struck Mariupol in the past – with the aim of terrorizing the population,” Ukrainian presidential advisor Oleksiy Aristovich said in a video speech.

“And if they keep doing that, we’re going to have to respond – and that’s one way to get us to move our artillery,” he said. The idea is to create one big problem to distract us and force us to shift forces. I think there will be an escalation.”

The main battlefield is now in the south of Kharkiv in the Donbass region, which Moscow is trying to capture on behalf of its separatist proxies, with the worst fighting centered in the devastated city of Severodonetsk.

With crushing artillery, Russian forces made only slow progress in some of the fiercest ground battles in Europe since World War II.

Moscow says Ukrainian forces in Severodonetsk are surrounded and ordered them to surrender or die last week after destroying the last bridge over the Severodonetsk River.

But Oleksandr Ratoshnik, a freelance photographer who arrived in Sievierodonetsk with Ukrainian forces in recent days, filmed reinforcements crossing in an inflatable dinghy.

Inside the ruins of the industrial zone on the front line, Ukrainian forces fired from the main gun of the tank. They smoked cigarettes while hiding from Russian artillery outside. An abandoned dachshund nicknamed “Bullet” by soldiers rushed through the rubble.

One of the soldiers said it was a normal working day: “For us, this is like digging potatoes.”

Drone attack

There was no immediate Ukrainian comment on the apparent drone strike that suspended production at Russia’s Novoshakhtinsk oil refinery on the Russian side of the border with the Donbass region controlled by pro-Russian separatists.

Video footage posted on social media showed a drone flying towards the refinery, before a large ball of flame shot up into the summer sky. Interfax quoted the local emergency service as saying that no one was hurt and the fire was extinguished.

Ukraine generally does not comment on reports of attacks on Russian infrastructure near the border, which it has called in the past the “karma” of Russian attacks on Ukraine.

In a separate incident, Russian authorities said four people were killed after a shell exploded at an ammunition depot deep in Russia.

In southern Ukraine, officials said, seven Russian missiles hit the port of Mykolaiv, killing at least one person and causing several large fires. Global grain trading company Vitera said its grain terminal in the southern Ukrainian port of Mykolaiv was bombed and set on fire.

Wednesday in both Russia and Ukraine was “Day of Remembrance and Sorrow”, the day Hitler’s Germany attacked the Soviet Union. Russian President Vladimir Putin laid flowers at the torch in memory of the dead.

World War II, which resulted in the deaths of 27 million Soviet citizens, played a prominent role in the Russian commentary on the invasion of Ukraine, which Putin called a “special operation” to root out the “Nazis”. The West calls Kyiv this baseless justification for waging war to eliminate Ukraine’s identity as a separate country.

“Psychiatrists of the future will study: how Russia, after building the cult of World War II for years, began to recreate the bloody pages of history and every step of the Nazis,” Ukrainian presidential adviser Mikhailo Podolak wrote on Twitter.

On Wednesday, Moscow repeated its threats to take unspecified retaliatory measures for Lithuania’s decision to block rail shipments of some goods to the Russian Baltic Sea enclave of Kaliningrad. Lithuania says it was required to halt shipments under European Union sanctions that took effect on Saturday.

“We are convinced that the illegal sanctions adopted by the European Union are absolutely unacceptable in this situation,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said in contact with journalists, adding that countermeasures are being prepared.

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