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Ukraine-Russia war – live: Toddler’s body pulled from rubble as air strikes death toll rises

Search continues for survivors of wave of missile attacks on Friday, as Putin targets energy infrastructure

Vishwam Sankaran,Matt Mathers
Saturday 17 December 2022 21:43 GMT
Volodymyr Zelensky says Ukraine war would not continue if Vladimir Putin died

A toddler’s body has been removed from rubble following a wave of deadly airstrikes in Ukraine on Friday.

Emergency crews are continuing to search for survivors after Russian missiles tore through an apartment building in the central Ukrainian city of Kryvyi Rih.

The missile was one of what Ukrainian authorities said were 16 that got through air defenses in the latest Russian attack targeting Ukrainian energy infrastructure.

The mayor of Kyiv announced today his city’s metro system is operational once again and residents have regained access to water.

Mayor Vitali Klitschko said while heat has been restored to half the city and electricity has been restored to two-thirds, emergency outages are still being implemented due to the significant deficit of electricity.

Four people were killed in Russia’s attacks in which over 70 missiles were launched targeting key energy infrastructure in Ukraine.

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky said in his nightly address that Vladimir Putin had the means to order several similar waves of attacks to drain the country’s energy system.


Putin will visit Belarus on Monday

AFP news agency reports that President Putin is set to visit Belarus on Monday.

It comes as the UK Ministry of Defence has warned Belarus is reporting holding ‘readiness exercises’.

Russia has also reportedly sent extra units of mobilised reservists into Belarus.

But the MoD says troops from Belarus are unlikely to be a force big and capable enough of carrying out a successful assault on northern Ukraine.

Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 07:41

Key infrastructure hit across Ukraine in Russian missile attacks

Ukrainian officials are reporting that Russia launched a fresh wave of missiles at Ukraine today.

Air defence systems across the country have launched into action.

Local officials say key infrastructure has been hit in the eastern city of Kharkiv and in the Black Sea region of Odesa.

Witnesses for Reuters say they heard explosions in Kyiv, but it’s uncertain if these were caused by missiles getting through defences at this stage. No casualties have been reported at this stage, and there are no details about what has been hit.

The governor of Sumy in the north says missiles have caused power outage in his area today.

Damage in Kharkiv (Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 08:33

Power outages in Ukraine after missile strikes

Russia has launched a second missile attack on Ukraine within a matter of days, causing damage to critical infrastructure and now power outages too.

The purpose of the attacks is to destroy Ukraine’s power grid, making it easier for Putin and his army to make gains, according to authorities.

Authorities in Kharkiv and Poltava, in eastern and central Ukriane respectively, have reported power outages on Friday.

Oleh Syniehubov, governor of Kharkiv said energy infrastructure in the area had been hit while public broadcasts Suspilne said there were power outages in the area.

Sounds of air defence could also be heard in many other regions across Ukraine, including Donetsk, Dnipro, Zaporizhzhia, Mykolaiv, Kivrohrad, Ternipol, Zhytomyr, Vinnytsia and Khmelnytskyi.

Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 09:12

Two people dead, 5 injured after rocket hits residential building

Two people have lost their lives and a further five people, including two children, have been injured after a missile hit a residential building in Kryvyi Rih in the Dnipro region of Ukraine.

The injured people are being treated in hospital.

The Ukrainian public broadcaster Suspline tweeted: “2 people died as a result of hitting a house in #KryvyiRih, the head of RMA Reznichenko said.

“At least 5 people were injured, including two children. An apartment block is destroyed.”

Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 10:06

MoD says Russia set to plan WW2-style entrenchment

The UK Ministry of Defence says Russia seems to be following “traditional military plans for entrenchment, largely unchanged since the Second World War”.

Its analysis focuses on Moscow’s recent efforts to construct “major defensive lines” which it says is “further illustration of Russia’s reversion to positional warfare that has been largely abandoned by most modern Western militaries in recent decades”.

Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 11:07

Death reported in Kherson

Another death due to Russia’s missile strikes on Ukraine has been reported following the announcement that two people died this morning.

One person has reportedly died in Kherson after today’s shelling.

According to a statement from the regional prosecutor’s office, several flats in a residential block caught fire and one person has died.

It comes after two people were killed and a further five injured elsewhere in the city of Kryvyi Rih today.

Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 11:21

Putin ramps up nuclear threat

Putin has reportedly moved a Yars nuclear missile for at least the third time, ramping up threats to the West.

New video footage shows the missile being transported to a garage in the Tver region in Russia, which is northwest of Moscow.

This deployment was marked with military ceremony in the Bologovsky Strategic Missile Forces compound.

“A missile regiment in the Tver Region in the Bologoye formation has entered combat duty with a road-mobile Yars system,” Russia’s Colonel-General Sergey Karakayev told broadcaster Zvezda according to the Tass news agency.

A Yars missile can be launced in seven minutes. It has a 7,500-mile range so it could reach both the UK and US.

Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 12:18

Dozens of missiles fired at Kyiv

Kyiv military spokesperson Mykhailo Shamanov said around 40 missiles were fired at the region on Friday.

37 of these were shot down.

He says it’s one of the largest Russian bombardments since the start of the war.

Suspline News reports that one person has been injured.

It tweeted: “Around 40 missiles were tracked in #Kyiv‘s airspace. Air defense forces managed to destroy 37, the city administration reports.

“So far, one person has been reported wounded, with the number of casualties and damage yet to be clarified.”

Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 12:27

70 shells fired at energy facilities

Russia has been accused of carrying out massive attacks on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.

Ukrainian state-owned energy company Ukrenergo has accused Russia of firing approximately ‘70 rockets’ at energy infrastructure across the country.

It says it’s caused an increased electricity shortage, which was already “significant” before this attack.

As this is now the ninth attack in this vain. restoring supplies could take even longer than before.

The attack has been described as “massive” on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.

Russian shelling has destroyed infrastructure across Ukraine (Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 12:47

One in five Homes for Ukraine hosts are struggling to help families due to the rising pressures of the cost of living crisis, the ONS has found.

The sponsorship scheme allows Ukrainian nationals and their relatives to come to the UK if they have a sponsor who can provide accommodation for at least six months.

The percentage of adults who said soaring prices impacted their ability to provide support on the scheme “very much” has doubled in five months, with 18 per cent reporting difficulty compared to nine per cent in July.

Read the full story.

Lucy Skoulding16 December 2022 13:20

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