Ukraine accuses Iran of training Russians to use drones
The mayor of Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, has warned residents they must prepare for the worst this winter if Russia continues to attack the country’s energy infrastructure, meaning there may be no electricity in the bitter cold, no water or no heating.
Mayor Vitali Klitschko told state media: “We are doing everything we can to avoid this. But let’s face it, our enemies are doing everything so that the city remains without heat, without electricity, without water supply in general, and the future of the city.” Country and the future of each of us depends on how prepared we are for different situations .
In his video late-night address to the nation, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Sunday that about 4.5 million people were without power.
He urged Ukrainians to endure the hardships and “we must get through this winter and be stronger in the spring than we are now”.
Russia has focused on destroying Ukraine’s energy infrastructure for the past month, leading to power shortages and frequent blackouts across the country.
In Kyiv, parts of the city and the surrounding area experience periodic power outages every hour.
Power outages are also planned in the Chernihiv, Cherkasy, Zhytomyr, Sumy, Kharkiv and Poltava regions, Ukraine’s state-owned energy company Ukrinyergo said.
Kyiv plans to set up around 1,000 heating points, but it’s unclear if that will be enough for a city of 3 million people.
As Russia intensifies its attacks on the capital, Ukrainian forces are advancing to the south.
Residents of the Russian-held Ukrainian city of Kherson received warning messages on their phones urging them to evacuate as soon as possible, Ukraine’s military said on Sunday.
Russian soldiers warned civilians that the Ukrainian army was preparing for a full-scale attack and urged people to head to the city’s right bank immediately.
Russian forces are preparing a Ukrainian counterattack to retake the southern city of Kherson, captured in the early days of the invasion.
In September, Russia illegally annexed Kherson and three other regions, and later imposed martial law on the four provinces.
The administration installed by the Kremlin in Kherson has already expelled tens of thousands of civilians from the city.
The Russians are trying to convince Ukrainians in Kherson that they are pulling out, when in fact they are digging defensive positions, Natalia Hominiuk, a spokeswoman for the south Ukrainian armed forces, told state television.
“There are defense units that dug there with great force, a certain amount of equipment was left behind and firing positions were set up,” she said.
Russian forces are also pushing into a hotly contested area to the east, worsening already difficult conditions for the population and the defending Ukrainian army following the illegal annexation of Moscow and the imposition of martial law in the Donetsk region.
Pavlo Kirilenko, the Ukrainian governor of the region, said the attacks almost completely destroyed power plants in the town of Bakhmut and the nearby town of Soledar.
The bombing resulted in the death of one civilian and the injury of three others, it was reported late Saturday.
Moscow-backed separatists controlled part of Donetsk for almost eight years before Russia invaded Ukraine in late February.
Protecting the separatist unilateral “republic” was one of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s justifications for the invasion, and his forces spent months seizing the entire province.
According to Zelenskyy’s office, Russia launched four rockets and 19 airstrikes between Saturday and Sunday, hitting more than 35 villages in nine regions, from Chernihiv and Kharkiv in the northeast to Kherson and Mykolaiv in the south. The strikes killed two people and injured six others.
In the city of Bakhmut in Donetsk, the remaining 15,000 residents live under daily shelling and without water and electricity, according to local media.
The city has been under attack for months, but the bombardment escalated after Russian forces suffered setbacks in Ukrainian counterattacks in the Kharkiv and Kherson regions.
The front line is now on the outskirts of Bakhmut, where mercenaries from the Wagner Group, a Russian military company, are assigned to lead the mission.
Yevgeny Prigozhin, the group’s founder, who has usually remained obscure, has a more visible role in the war.
In a statement on Sunday, he announced the funding and establishment of “militia training centers” in Russia’s Belgorod and Kursk regions in the south-west of the country, saying local people are in a better position to “fight subversion”. Russian soil.
In Kharkiv, officials are working to identify the bodies found in mass graves after the Russians pulled out, Dmytro Chubenko, a spokesman for the regional prosecutor’s office, told local media.
He added that DNA samples have been collected from 450 bodies discovered in a mass grave in the city of Izium, but the samples need to be matched with their relatives and only 80 people have taken part so far.
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