Russia to open humanitarian corridors to Ukrainian cities on Monday
07 March 2022, 12:35 pm | Updated: 07 December 2023, 12:30 pm
Russia's military will hold fire and open humanitarian corridors in several Ukrainian cities on Monday, the Defence Ministry said, after fighting halted weekend evacuation efforts and civilian casualties from Russia's invasion mounted.
The corridors will opened at 10 a.m. Moscow time (700 GMT) from the capital Kyiv as well as the cities of Kharkiv and Sumy and are being set up at the personal request of French President Emmanuel Macron, the ministry said.
Those who leave Kyiv will then be airlifted to Russia, the ministry said, adding it would use drones to monitor the evacuation.
"Attempts by the Ukrainian side to deceive Russia and the whole civilised world ... are useless this time," the ministry said.
Russia's invasion has been condemned around the world, sent more than 1.5 million Ukrainians fleeing abroad, and triggered sweeping Western-led sanctions aimed at crippling the Russian economy.
Oil prices soared to their highest levels since 2008 in Asian trade after the Biden administration said it was exploring banning imports of Russian oil. Russia provides 7% of global supply. read more
Japan, which counts Russia as its fifth-biggest supplier of crude oil, is also in discussion with the United States and European countries about possibly banning Russian oil imports, Kyodo News reported on Monday.
Europe relies on Russia for crude oil and natural gas but has become more open to the idea of banning Russian products, a source familiar with the discussions told Reuters.
Russian forces are converging on Kyiv, a city of 3 million, but have faced stiff resistance and have suffered heavy losses, according to Ukrainian authorities.
The general staff of Ukraine's armed forces said Russian forces were "beginning to accumulate resources for the storming of Kyiv", after days of slow progress in their main advance on the capital, south from Belarus.
About 200,000 people remained trapped in the besieged Black Sea port of Mariupol, most sleeping underground to escape more than six days of shelling by Russian forces that has cut off food, water, power and heating, according to the Ukrainian authorities.
About half of the 400,000 people in the city were due to be evacuated on Sunday but that effort was aborted for a second day when a ceasefire plan collapsed as the sides accused each other of failing to stop shooting and shelling.
Ukrainian authorities said on Monday the southern city of Mykolayiv was being shelled.
Russian media cited pro-Russian separatists as saying an oil terminal in Luhansk was on fire after what they believe was a Ukrainian missile strike.
Russia calls the campaign it launched on Feb. 24 a "special military operation". It has repeatedly denied attacking civilian areas and says it has no plans to occupy Ukraine.
The civilian death toll from hostilities across Ukraine since Russia launched the invasion was 364, including more than 20 children, the United Nations said on Sunday, adding that hundreds were wounded.
Category : International