The destroyed bridge had been used for evacuating civilians and delivering humanitarian aid. It crossed the Desna River and connected the city to Ukraine’s capital, Kyiv.
Chernihiv authorities said Tuesday that the encircled city has no water or electricity and called the situation there a humanitarian disaster.
Explosions and bursts of gunfire shook Kyiv on Wednesday morning, and heavy artillery fire could be heard from the northwest, where Russian forces have sought to encircle and take the capital’s suburbs.
KEY DEVELOPMENTS IN THE RUSSIA-UKRAINE WAR:
— Ukrainian leaders accuse Russia of seizing 15 workers from aid convoy
— Biden starts a trip to Europe as Russia’s war in Ukraine bogs down, challenges grow
— Amid Russia’s new crackdowns, small signs of defiance emerge
— A new fund directs its support to Ukraine’s long-term needs
— Security Council taking up Russian resolution on Ukraine crisis as Assembly hears rival resolutions
— Go to https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine for more coverage
LVIV, Ukraine — Russian military forces destroyed a laboratory at the Chernobyl nuclear plant that worked to improve management of radioactive waste, the Ukrainian agency responsible for the Chernobyl exclusion zone said Tuesday.
The Russian military seized the decommissioned plant at the beginning of the war last month. The exclusion zone is the contaminated area around the plant, site of the world’s worst nuclear meltdown in 1986.
The state agency said the laboratory, built at a cost of 6 million euros with support from the European Commission, opened in 2015.
The laboratory contained “highly active samples and samples of radionuclides that are now in the hands of the enemy, which we hope will harm itself and not the civilized world,” the agency said in its statement.
Radionuclides are unstable atoms of chemical elements that release radiation..
Ukraine’s nuclear regulatory agency said Monday that radiation monitors around the plant had stopped working.
WASHINGTON — Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has denied that Russia’s invasion has stalled.
Asked on CNN what Russian President Vladimir Putin has achieved in Ukraine, he said: “Well, first of all not yet. He hasn’t achieved yet.” But he insisted the military operation was going “strictly in accordance with the plans and purposes that were established beforehand.”
Peskov reiterated that Putin’s main goals were to “get rid of the military potential of Ukraine” and “ensure that Ukraine changes from an anti-Russian center to a neutral country.”
LVIV, Ukraine — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russian forces not only blocked a humanitarian convoy trying to reach besieged Mariupol with desperately needed supplies on Tuesday but took captive some of the rescue workers and bus drivers.
He said the Russians had agreed to the route ahead of time.
“We are trying to organize stable humanitarian corridors for Mariupol residents, but almost all of our attempts, unfortunately, are foiled by the Russian occupiers, by shelling, or deliberate terror,” Zelenskyy said in his nighttime video address to the nation.
Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said the Russians seized 11 bus drivers and four rescue workers along with their vehicles. She said their fate was unknown. The figures couldn’t immediately be confirmed.
More than 7,000 people were evacuated from Mariupol on Tuesday, but about 100,000 remain in the city “in inhuman conditions, under a full blockade, without food, without water, without medicine and under constant shelling, under constant bombardment,” Zelenskyy said.
Before the war, 430,000 people lived in the port city on the Sea of Azov.
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