After the massive Russian attacks on Ukraine, the G7 meets urgently

After the massive Russian attacks on Ukraine, the G7 meets urgently

The G7 powers are meeting on Tuesday, the day after heavy Russian bombing of Kyiv and other cities in Ukraine, strikes that sparked an outcry in the West as Ukrainian authorities showed their determination against Moscow.

In retaliation for what Vladimir Putin called a “terrorist” attack that partially destroyed the bridge between Russia and annexed Crimea in 2014, rockets, missiles and drones fell on Ukraine. Symbolic and strategic, this viaduct serves to supply Russian troops in southern Ukraine where Kiev forces are conducting a counteroffensive.

According to the Kremlin, the attacks were directed against Ukrainian military, energy and communications infrastructure, but also hit purely civilian locations 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.

These bombings could have “violated” martial law and constituted war crimes if civilian targets were “deliberately attacked,” said the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva.

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy will attend the virtual emergency G7 meeting on the issue on Tuesday at 12:00 GMT.

For his part, Vladimir Putin is 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 Zaporizhia, which Russia has been militarily occupying since March and which she appropriated when she received the Demanded annexation of four Ukrainian regions.

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

In a television interview, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu called for a ceasefire between the warring parties “as soon as possible”.

A Turkish official also told AFP on Tuesday that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who takes a neutral position in the conflict, will meet Vladimir Putin on Wednesday in Astana on the sidelines of a regional summit in the capital of Kazakhstan.

After the wave of bombings, the westerners reiterated their support for Kyiv, the American Joe Biden promises “advanced systems” of air defense, just like Germany. London has pledged “not to waver one iota in its determination to help Ukraine win”.

The European Union has labeled Russian bombing of civilian targets as a “war crime”. UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres denounced “an unacceptable escalation”.

– Not intimidated –

The Ukrainian president pounded on him that his country would hold out despite these massive strikes, including the first on Kyiv since June.

“Ukraine will not be intimidated,” he said in his evening address.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denis Chmygal said eleven major infrastructures, including power plants, were damaged in eight regions in addition to the capital. Power outages affected many regions.

More than 300 towns across the country were left without power.

– threat from Belarus –

Mr Putin on Sunday accused Ukraine of orchestrating Saturday morning’s blast that destroyed part of the Crimean Bridge, which was built at great expense and inaugurated in 2018. Kyiv has neither confirmed nor denied its involvement.

But the partial destruction of the bridge is a slap in the face for Moscow, especially since, after a series of military setbacks in north-east, east and south Ukraine, the Ukrainian army, heavily armed with Western weapons, is repelling the Russians.

In September, as a sign of these difficulties on the ground, Vladimir Putin ordered the mobilization of hundreds of thousands of reservists, a decision that prompted many of his compatriots to leave the country.

The Russian president vowed Monday to order further “tough” responses in the event of renewed Ukrainian attacks on Russia, but without renewing his threats to use nuclear weapons made in September.

The Russian Defense Ministry assured that Monday’s salvo achieved all its objectives, while the Ukrainian President reiterated that of the “84 Russian missiles fired at Ukraine, 43 were shot down”.

As Moscow’s only ally in that war, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko accused Kyiv of preparing an attack on his country despite failing to send his troops to Ukraine, adding that as a result, Russian-Belarusian troops would be stationed without indicate their location.

He also accused Poland, Lithuania and Ukraine of preparing “terrorist” attacks and a “military uprising” in Belarus. However, Mr Lukashenko said he did not want to go to war.

On Tuesday, Minsk assured that the joint force formed with Russia is “purely defensive”.


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