Russia Ukraine crisis :Ukraine says 137 civilians, soldiers killed

Russia Ukraine Conflict Live News, Russia Ukraine War Crisis News Today, 25 Feb: Ukraine has severed diplomatic relations with Russia after Moscow launched an all-out invasion of Ukraine by land, air and sea on Thursday, the biggest attack by one state against another in Europe since World War 2.

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Russia Ukraine Crisis Live: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said 137 civilians, including 10 military officers have been killed, and 316 people injured so far in the Russian invasion. The dead included all border guards on the Zmiinyi Island in the Odesa region, which was taken over by Russians. Zelenskyy said Kyiv was ‘left alone’ to fight Moscow.

Ukraine said it lost control of the Chernobyl nuclear site, the site of the 1986 disaster. A senior official said that the staff at the Chernobyl plant had been “taken hostage” when Russian troops seized the facility, a move the US termed “incredibly alarming”. A senior US defense official said Russia may be intent on seizing Kyiv, the capital, and other key cities and ultimately installing a more friendly government.World leaders have decried the invasion,  the US and its allies said they will block the assets of four large Russian banks, impose export controls and sanction oligarchs. The countries on NATO’s eastern flank, especially the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, all have received the first batches of US military troops and equipment. China, meanwhile, continues its support of the Kremlin with its customs agency approving imports of wheat from all regions of Russia.

The Russian attack on Ukraine is, unarguably, an assault on the latter’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. In a 24-hour period, Moscow recognised the “republics” of Donetsk and Luhansk in East Ukraine and deployed aerial forces into the country. The attacks, reportedly, are taking place on multiple fronts, including airports and military targets. The conflict is now the largest attack by one state on another in Europe since the Second World War and the first since the Balkan conflict in the 1990s.

While Beijing has expressed its full-throated support for Russia, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has condemned the invasion, warned of dire “economic and political consequences”, as well as placed aerial and naval assets on high alert. In essence, Ukraine is now on the verge of becoming a theatre of conflict in a new Cold War. But the world has changed in the last 30-odd years, and both sides — the West and Russia — must defuse the situation as soon as possible.

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