LVIV, Ukraine – The bodies of more than 900 civilians were discovered in the Kyiv region after the withdrawal of Russian forces, the regional police chief said in a briefing on Friday.
Andriy Nebytov, the head of Kyiv’s regional police force, said the bodies had been left on the streets or given temporary burials. He cited police data indicating that 95% of the victims had died from sniper fire and gunshot wounds.
“As a result, we understand that during the (Russian) occupation, people were simply executed in the streets,” Nebytov said. “The number of civilians killed has exceeded 900 – and I emphasize that these are civilians whose bodies we have found and handed over for forensic examination.”
He added that several bodies were found every day, under the rubble and in mass graves.
“Most of the victims were found in Bucha, where there are more than 350 bodies,” he said.
According to Nebytov, supply workers in Bucha had collected and buried corpses in the Kyiv suburb while it remained under Russian control. Nebytov added that Russian troops “tracked down” people who expressed strong pro-Ukrainian views.
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► The Russians’ view of the United States deteriorated dramatically last month, according to a poll by Levada Center, an independent Russian non-profit organization. About 72% of Russians looked bad at the United States in March compared to 55% in February. Only 17% of Russians viewed the United States positively in March compared to 31% in February, according to the poll.
► President Joe Biden is not prepared to visit Ukraine, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told the podcast “Pod Save America” on Thursday.
►The Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund, Kristalina Georgieva, said that the consequences of Russia’s invasion contributed to economic downgrades for 143 countries.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said his nation had “made significant efforts to de-escalate the situation, neutralize the crisis and rebuild peace.” China has refused to condemn the invasion of Ukraine by its strategic partner Russia or even refer to the conflict as a war.
Zelenskyy praised Ukrainian bravery in addresses marking 50 days of war
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy praised his country’s bravery late Thursday, saying Ukraine should be proud to have survived 50 days under Russian attack, as the Russians “gave us a maximum of five.”
In a video address, Zelenskyy called it “an achievement for millions of Ukrainians, of all those who made the most important decision of their lives on February 24 – to fight.” He added: “But they did not know us either. And they did not know how brave Ukrainians are, how much we value freedom. Our ability to live as we want.”
Meanwhile, the famous Russian warship Moscow, whose history dates back to the days of the Cold War, sank in the Black Sea on Thursday in the latest battle against Moscow’s war effort in Ukraine.
Losing the vessel, built in Ukraine during the Soviet era and named after the Russian capital, represents a military setback and symbolic defeat for Russia as its troops gather for a renewed offensive in eastern Ukraine after stumbling north.
The Russian Defense Ministry said Moscow – the flagship of the country’s Black Sea Fleet – was towed to port as it “lost its stability due to damage to the hull received during the fire from the detonation of ammunition. Under the stormy sea conditions, the ship sank.” But Odesa Governor Maksym Marchenko said on Telegram that Ukrainian forces hit the guided missile cruiser with two missiles.
Countries buying Russian oil ‘make money on blood’, Zelenskyy told the BBC
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy criticized European countries that continue to buy Russian oil in an interview with the BBC.
“We do not understand how you can make money on blood,” Zelenskyy said. “Unfortunately, that is what some countries have done – European countries.”
In particular, Zelenskyy called on Germany and Hungary not to take part in the Russian oil embargo imposed by many other countries, including the United States. He added that while countries such as Britain and the United States have been helpful in supplying weapons, Ukraine has “used them faster and more of them.”
“The priority word is ‘past,'” he said. “The priority word is ‘fast’, the priority word is ‘now’. Because we are fighting now.”
The BBC’s full interview with Zelenskyy will be broadcast on 16 April on the BBC News Channel.
The UN warns 2.7 million people with disabilities at risk in Ukraine
About 2.7 million people with disabilities are at “serious risk of injury” due to the war in Ukraine, the UN warned on Friday.
The Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities said it received reports that people with disabilities, including children, are stranded in homes, residential institutions and orphanages without the necessary medicine, food, water or other basic needs. Many have been separated from their support network, making it harder to navigate their surroundings, the committee said.
The group also warned that women with disabilities are at greater risk of sexual violence, which has been reported across Ukraine.
The group called on Russia to “immediately” end the war and “respect and respect the principles of international human rights and humanitarian law.”
Russia could “upscale missile attack” on Kiev
Russia’s Defense Ministry on Friday promised to increase the “scope of missile attacks” on Kiev in response to Ukraine’s “diversions into Russian territory.”
The statement comes a day after Russian authorities accused Ukrainian forces of launching airstrikes on residential buildings in one of the country’s regions on the border with Ukraine, in which seven people were injured.
According to Russian officials, about 100 residential buildings were damaged in Thursday’s attack on the village of Klimovo in the Bryansk region. The Defense Ministry said Russian forces in Ukraine’s Chernihiv region shut down a Ukrainian Mi-8 helicopter allegedly involved in the attack on the Bryansk region.
Authorities in another border region, Belgorod, also reported Ukrainian shelling on Thursday.
– Associated Press
Moscow is likely to change naval operations in the Black Sea following the loss of the warship Moscow
The British Ministry of Defense says the loss of Russia’s naval flagship is likely to force Moscow to change the way its naval forces operate in the Black Sea.
Moscow sank after being damaged under controversial circumstances. Ukraine says it has hit the vessel with missiles, while Moscow acknowledged a fire on board but no attack.
In an update published on social media on Friday, the British Ministry of Defense said that the Soviet-era ship, which returned to operational service last year after a major rebuild, “served a key role as both a command vessel and an air defense hub.”
It said the shipwreck “means that Russia has now suffered damage to two major naval assets since the invasion of Ukraine, the first being Russia’s Alligator-class landing ship Saratov on March 24. Both events are likely to prompt Russia to revise its maritime position in The Black Sea. “
– Associated Press
Russia threatens to move nuclear weapons closer if Finland and Sweden join NATO
Finland’s and Sweden’s accession to NATO will force Russia to strengthen its northwestern borders and place nuclear weapons in the region, Russian Security Council Vice-President Dmitry Medvedev said on Thursday. Medvedev noted on his Telegram channel that the length of Russia’s land border with the NATO alliance would more than double. One of Russia’s explanations for its invasion of Ukraine was concern about possible NATO enlargement there.
“Obviously, these borders need to be strengthened. The grouping of land forces and air defenses will be seriously strengthened, and significant naval forces will be deployed in the waters of the Gulf of Finland, “Medvedev wrote, adding that it is” impossible to preserve the non-nuclear status of the region “.
Starring: Associated Press