Russia "cowardly fires missiles at sleeping soldiers"

Russia "cowardly fires missiles at sleeping soldiers"

 Ukraine called on China, Moscow's strategic ally, to "condemn the savagery" of Russia, which continues to bomb Ukrainian cities and launch new weapons, such as hypersonic missiles. Sirens sounded again Saturday night in kyiv and Russian airstrikes followed each other at dizzying speed in Mikolaiv (south), where a bombing killed dozens of soldiers in a barracks on Friday, regional governor Vitali Klim reported. . To date, no damage or possible casualties have been reported and witness estimates vary widely. "No less than 200 soldiers are sleeping in the barracks," said a 22-year-old soldier, coming from another nearby post. Other soldiers estimated that the balance of this attack could be a hundred dead. Russia "cowardly fired missiles at sleeping soldiers. Rescue operations are continuing," Governor Klim said. 

 In the west, Russia's Defense Ministry said it used a hypersonic "Kinjal" missile for the first time on Friday to destroy an underground arsenal. Russian President Vladimir Putin claims that such missiles are part of an "invincible" arsenal. "Ukraine has unfortunately become a testing ground for Russia's entire missile arsenal," Ukrainian aviation spokesman Iuri Ignat told the Ukrainska Pravda website. According to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense, Russian forces have carried out 291 missile launches and 1,403 aerial bombardments since the start of the invasion on February 24. In Zaporizhia, southwest of Kyiv, the local government said nine people were killed in the shooting. Police also reported seven deaths from mortar fire in Makariv, 50 km west of the capital. Ukrainian President Volodimir Zelensky, however, believes that purely military bets will not resolve the conflict and may even be a double-edged sword for Putin, who NGOs and Western leaders accuse of committing "war crimes". The negotiations were "Russia's only chance to minimize the damage caused by its own fault," he said. 

 His adviser Mijailo Podoliak urged China to project itself into the future, condemning "Russian barbarism." "China can become an important element of the world's security system if it makes the right decisions to support the coalition of civilized nations and condemn Russia's barbarism," Podoliak, who is part of the Ukrainian negotiating team, tweeted. Since the start of the conflict, the two sides have held several rounds of discussions, the fourth and last being last Monday.
The head of the Russian 
delegation on Friday referred to an adjustment of position on the question of neutral status for Ukraine - similar to that of Sweden and Austria - and progress on the demilitarization of the country, albeit with a "feel" to the "security guarantees" required by Ukraine. For some leaders, the end of the conflict will not normalize the international situation in Russia, which is the object of harsh Western sanctions for "aggression" against Ukraine, a former Soviet republic. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said it would be a "mistake" to return to normal relations with Moscow, even if the invasion stopped. Moreover, the punishment increases. Australia on Sunday announced an embargo on exports of alumina and its bauxite to Russia, essential for aluminum production and strategically for the arms industry. 

 On the ground, the Russian Defense Ministry reported the destruction of a Ukrainian radio and intelligence center on the outskirts of Odessa, on the Black Sea. His forces de facto control most of the Ukrainian coast and maintain a siege of the strategic port city of Mariupol, on the Sea of   Azov. According to the adviser to the Ukrainian Interior Ministry, Vadim Denisenko, the situation is "catastrophic" in the city. The people who made it out spoke of corpses left on the streets, hunger and cold. Fighting seems to be deepening in the city and "one of the most important metallurgical industries in Europe", Azovstal, "destroyed", said Ukrainian deputy Lesia Vasylenko. Ukrainian authorities have accused the Russian air force of "deliberately" bombing the Mariupol theater on Wednesday, which Russia denies. "More than a thousand" people were in the anti-aircraft shelter under this building, according to the city council. Zelensky said on Friday that more than 130 survivors had been rescued from the rubble and said "operations are continuing."

 A group of 19 children and adolescents aged between 4 and 17, most of them orphans, were "in grave danger" after being blocked at a Mariupol clinic that specializes in pulmonary care, relatives and witnesses told AFP on Saturday. According to the source, the children's guardians have not been able to move them due to the bombing and the group lives in cold rooms and many have not been able to clean for two weeks. Since February 24, more than 3.2 million Ukrainians have embarked on the path of exile, nearly two-thirds of them to Poland, sometimes just one stage before resuming their exodus. In a March 18 count, the United Nations put the balance of civilian casualties at at least 816 killed and 1,333 injured, although the agency believes that in reality it is worse.

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