Day 8 of Russian Invasion of Ukraine. From World News Sources. In a video address to the nation early Thursday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called on Ukrainians to keep up their resistance, but didn’t comment on whether the Russians have seized any cities.
“They will have no peace here,” Zelenskyy said, calling on the Russian soldiers to “go home” and describing them as “confused children who have been used.”
His comments come as Russia acknowledged for the first time since the start of the invasion that nearly 500 Russian troops have been killed in the fighting and around 1,600 wounded. Ukraine has not released a similar casualty figure for its armed forces.
These are the key events after eight days of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine:
Russia advances in the South
- Russian forces take the Black Sea city of Kherson in southern Ukraine. Russian forces are in control of the local government building in Kherson, according to its mayor, Igor Kolykhaiev, although there are conflicting reports about the status of the port city. Home to about 300,000 people, Kherson is by far the largest town and first regional capital to be in Russian hands.
- Russian forces also surround Mariupol, where “terrifying fighting” is reported. Deputy Mayor of Mariupol told CNN they’ve been under severe shelling for over 26 hours, with no electricity and no water. He says they desperately need help as Mariupol residents may not survive much longer in freezing night conditions.
- Ukraine’s second city Kharkiv continues to come under severe Russian shelling, with police and university buildings among the latest struck. BBC reports three schools in Kharkiv have been bombed.
- The mayor of Kharkiv says there’s been massive destruction as Russian forces surround the city. Its police headquarters was left in flames after a missile attack. Ukrainian authorities say around 2,000 civilians have been killed in the past week.
Northern City of Chernihiv
- An oil depot in Chernihiv is filmed burning as firefighters attempt to control the blaze. CNN reports it took firefighters hours to control the blaze suspected to have been shelled by Russian forces.
‘Massive explosions’ heard in Kyiv
- Ukrainian media say several “massive explosions” have been heard in the capital, Kyiv, triggering air-raid sirens amid fighting on the outskirts of the capital.
First Russian toll
- Russia says 498 of its troops have been killed in Ukraine, its first declared death toll since President Vladimir Putin launched his invasion on February 24. The true number of casualties on each side is not known. The United Nations has recorded at least 227 civilian deaths, but says the real toll is likely higher.
War crimes probe
- The International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor says an active probe into possible war crimes in Ukraine “will immediately proceed” after his office received the backing of 39 countries. Russians are using
- Russia moots the possibility of discussing a ceasefire in talks with Ukraine expected to be held on Thursday on the Belarus-Poland border. A Russian negotiator said a ceasefire was on the agenda, but Ukraine has said Russia must stop bombing Ukrainian cities before any progress can be made.
UN demands Russia’s withdrawal
- The UN General Assembly overwhelmingly adopts a resolution demanding Russia “immediately” withdraw from Ukraine. Moscow wins support from only four other nations – Belarus, North Korea, Eritrea and Syria.
Russian jets enter Swedish airspace
- The Swedish Armed Forces say four Russian fighter jets entered Sweden’s air space to the east of the island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea.
1 million refugees flee fighting
- More than a million refugees have now fled the fighting in Ukraine, with the UN calling it the fastest exodus of people this century. “In just seven days we have witnessed the exodus of one million refugees from Ukraine to neighbouring countries,” the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, says in his Twitter post.
Wounded Russian troops in Belarus
- The Associated Press, citing doctors and residents, said Russian soldiers wounded in fighting around Kyiv are being ferried to a Belarus hospital near the Ukraine border. The EU have imposed sanctions targeting Belarus for their role in the Russian invasion.
Russian superyachts in the Maldives
- At least five superyachts owned by Russian billionaires have been anchored or cruising in the Maldives amidst severe Western sanctions. The Maldives is an Indian Ocean island nation that does not have an extradition treaty with the United States.
- Russians own about 7% to 10% of all superyachts in the world, according to industry publication Superyacht News.
- The superyachts’ journey to the Maldives comes as Germany seized a superyacht owned by EU-sanctioned Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov on Wednesday, according to Forbes. It’s the first superyacht owned by a Russian tycoon seized since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24.