Saturday, May 21

Ukraine under Russian assault

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If you’re just joining us, welcome. It’s a fast-moving situation in Ukraine and we’re working to keep you up to date. Here’s the latest we know about the invasion.

  • In a televised address early on Friday Russia’s President Vladimir Putin ordered a “military operation” in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region but what’s been launched goes far further and amounts to a full-scale attack on the country
  • Russian military vehicles were said to have breached the border in a number of places, in the north, south and east, including from Belarus. At least seven people are known to have been killed in Russian attacks, police say. Another 19 are missing
  • Multiple explosions were heard in the city of Odesa within the past hour
  • More than 40 Ukrainian troops have been killed in Russian shelling, Ukrainian president’s office says, but this has not been independently confirmed
  • CCTV images issued by the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine reportedly show Russian military vehicles moving across the border from Crimea
  • BBC correspondents have heard explosions in the capital Kyiv, as well as Kramatorsk in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine
  • The Ukrainian armed forces say they have shot down five Russian planes and a helicopter; Russia has dismissed these claims
  • Emergency sirens have sounded in Kyiv and huge traffic jams have built up as residents flee the city

Missile strikes and explosions have been reported near major cities in Ukraine as Russian forces launch a major military assault.

There are lots of reports right now on where attacks are taking place. You might have seen some videos on social media – we are looking at what’s out there and verifying they are real before sharing them.

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