Russian attack of Ukraine base brings war to NATO’s doorstep – National

Russian Missile hit a large amount Ukrainians base near the border with NATO member Poland It left 35 people dead and 134 injured, a local official said Sunday, in an escalating war in the west of the country as intense fighting has been reported elsewhere.

The Russian Defense Ministry said the airstrike destroyed a large amount of foreign-supplied weapons stored at a large training facility and that it killed “up to 180 foreign mercenaries”.

Reuters could not independently verify casualties on either side.

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The attack on the Yavoriv Center for International Peace and Security, a base just 15 miles (25 km) from the Polish border that had previously hosted NATO military trainers, brought the conflict to the threshold of a Western defensive alliance.

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On Saturday, Russia warned that Western arms convoys to Ukraine could be considered a legitimate target.

He said the incident marked a “significant escalation” of the conflict. White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan, speaking on CBS’s “Face the Nation,” said any attack on NATO territory would trigger a full coalition response.

Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said Russia used high-precision, long-range weapons to attack Yavoriv and a separate facility in the village of Starichi.

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Russia-Ukraine conflict: Russia shows signs of interest in peace talks, US official says

Russia-Ukraine conflict: Russia shows signs of interest in peace talks, US official says

“As a result of the attack, up to 180 foreign mercenaries and a large amount of foreign weapons were destroyed,” he said.

The 360 ​​square kilometer (140 sq mi) facility is one of Ukraine’s largest and the largest in the western part of the country, by far one of the worst skirmishes.

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Ukraine, whose NATO aspirations are the main source of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s displeasure, held most of the military exercises with Western countries at the base before the invasion. The last major exercises are in September.

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In the weeks leading up to the February 24 Russian invasion, Ukrainian troops trained there, but according to Ukrainian media, all the foreign instructors left by mid-February, leaving behind their equipment. .

“The dining room and dormitory were destroyed. In the barracks too,” said Colonel Leonid Benzalo, an officer in the Ukrainian medical reserve, who was thrown across the room by one of the explosions. “The most important thing is that we are still alive,” he told Reuters after treating the wounded there.

While Western nations seek to isolate Putin by imposing harsh economic sanctions and supplying Ukraine with weapons, the US and its allies are concerned to avoid NATO being drawn into the conflict. sudden.

“There are no NATO personnel in Ukraine,” the NATO official said, when asked if anyone from the alliance was at the base.

A Ukrainian firefighter puts out a fire inside a large food product storage facility that was destroyed by an early morning air strike on the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, March 13, 2022.

AP Photo / Vadim Ghirda

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Russian missile attack kills 35 people at Ukrainian military training base near Polish border

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Fierce fighting was reported on many fronts.

Air raid sirens are ringing again across the capital Kyiv and authorities say they are stockpiling two weeks’ worth of essential food items for the 2 million people who have yet to flee the forces. Russia is trying to besiege the city.

Ukraine said fresh air strikes on an airport to the west and heavy shelling on Chernihiv northeast of the capital.

Interior Ministry official Vadym Denyenko said Ukrainian forces were counter-attacking in the eastern Kharkiv region and around the southern town of Mykolayiv. Reuters was unable to verify those claims.

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Russia-Ukraine conflict: Ukraine government insists it will not give up as casualties increase

Russia-Ukraine conflict: Ukraine government insists it will not give up as casualties increase

An American journalist was shot dead by Russian troops in the town of Irpin, northwest of Kyiv, and another was wounded, the regional police chief said.

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Despite the violence, both sides offered the most optimistic assessment of the prospects for progress at the bilateral talks held periodically since the start of the invasion.

“Russia has started a constructive dialogue,” said Ukrainian negotiator and presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak in a video posted online. “I think we’ll literally get some results in the next few days.”

A Russian delegate to the talks with Ukraine, Leonid Slutsky, was quoted by the RIA news agency as saying that significant progress had been made and it was likely that the delegations could reach draft agreements soon.

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Neither side said what these would include. Three rounds of talks between the two sides in Belarus, most recently last Monday, have mainly focused on humanitarian issues.

But there have been conflicting claims about the timing of the new discussions. Ukraine’s presidential adviser Oleksiy Arestovych told state television “negotiations are continuing right now.” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov denied this, saying that talks were scheduled for Monday via video link.

In a Twitter post, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy called on US software companies Microsoft Corp MSFT.O and Oracle Corp ORCL.N and Germany’s SAPG.DE business software group to halt services. support service in Russia.

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In the weeks since the invasion began, Russia has asked China, which has not condemned the Ukraine attack, for military equipment, the Financial Times and the Washington Post quoted unnamed US officials as saying.

A spokesman for the Chinese embassy in Washington said he had not heard of such a request and the priority was to prevent the situation from “escalating or even spiraling out of control”.

The Russian invasion has left more than 2.5 million people fleeing across the Ukrainian border and hundreds of thousands trapped in besieged cities.

Olga, a refugee from Kyiv, told Reuters after arriving in Romania: “It’s terrible because of how violent and inhuman it is.

Ukraine’s human rights watchdog said Russia used phosphorus bombs in an overnight attack on the town of Popasna in eastern Luhansk, calling it a “war crime”. She shared a photo purporting to show the alleged attack, but did not say whether Ukraine had concrete evidence. Reuters was unable to immediately verify any of the reports.

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Phosphorus bullets can be legally used in war to provide light, create smoke, or burn buildings. But its use in densely populated areas has been a source of persistent controversy.

A view of destroyed apartments damaged by shelling, in Kharkiv, Ukraine, Sunday, March 13, 2022.

AP Photo / Andrew Marienko

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In eastern Ukraine, Russian troops are trying to encircle Ukrainian forces as they advance from the port of Mariupol in the south and the second city of Kharkiv in the north, the British Ministry of Defense said.

The city council in Mariupol said in a statement that 2,187 residents had been killed since the invasion began. Reuters was unable to verify that fee.

Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second largest city, has come under some of the heaviest shelling. Video from one resident, Teimur Aliev, showed bombed buildings lining the streets, burned cars with bullet holes and debris scattered around.

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“We will stitch up the wounds and pain for our country and our city. We are ready to build it and we are ready to renew it when the war is over. We are not going anywhere,” said Aliev, a 23-year-old musician.

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Ukrainian authorities release CCTV footage showing the abducted mayor of Melitopol

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In Chernihiv, about 150 kilometers (100 miles) northeast of Kyiv, firefighters rescued residents from a burning building following massive shelling, video from Ukraine’s emergency services – and Verified by Reuters – shows.

Moscow denies targeting civilians. It blames Ukraine for unsuccessful attempts to evacuate civilians from besieged cities, a charge Ukraine and its Western allies strongly deny.

Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said on national television that more than 140,000 people had been evacuated from conflict areas, but a humanitarian convoy was unable to reach Mariupol due to shelling.

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The Kremlin describes its actions as a “special operation” aimed at the demilitarization and “demilitarization” of Ukraine. Ukraine and its Western allies call this a baseless pretext for a war of choice.

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