Kharkiv Bombarded; Massive Russian Military Convoy Marching Towards Kyiv

Russia attacked Ukraine’s second biggest city of Kharkiv near the Russian border Tuesday.

A missile sent by its forces hit the regional government’s headquarters in Freedom Square, causing a huge explosion. There are conflicting reports about civilian casualties.

Ukraine’s President Zelensky condemned the bombing of Kharkiv as a war crime and said civilians were being deliberately targeted.

“We call on all countries of the world to respond immediately and effectively to this criminal tactic of the aggressor and to declare that Russia is committing state terrorism. We demand full responsibility for terrorists in international courts,” he said in a Facebook message Tuesday.

Russia is continuing its relentless attack on major Ukrainian cities despite the UN General Assembly’s call for an immediate ceasefire and full return to diplomacy and dialogue.

Satellite images show a massive convoy of Russian military vehicles is closing in on Kyiv, media outlets reported. The Pentagon says the move is to capture Kyiv.

How the Russians plan to capture Kyiv once the convoy reaches its destination is unknown right now, Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby said during a media briefing.

“Whether it’s encirclement, or bombardment, or street-to-street fighting, I mean, I just don’t think we have that level of dexterity now to give you that kind of detail in terms of Russian planning,” he told reporters.

Addressing a rare emergency session of the General Assembly, Russia’s permanent representative Vasily Nebenzya said Russia doesn’t intend to occupy Kiev. “The purpose of this special operation is to protect people who have been subjected to abuse and genocide by the Kyiv regime for eight years. For this, it is necessary to demilitarize and denazify Ukraine,” he told the 163-nation body in New York Monday.

On the same day, nearly 5 hours-long talks between Ukraine and Russia at the Belarusian-Ukrainian border returned no palpable results but the two sides agreed to hold another round of talks “in the near future.”

More than half a million refugees have fled Ukraine during Russia’s invasion, the UN said Monday.

In a video message posted to Facebook, Ukrainian defense spokesperson claimed that more than 5,700 Russian troops have been killed and more than 200 others were taken into custody.

The official also claimed that 198 Russian tanks, 29 planes, 846 armored vehicles and 29 helicopters were destroyed in stiff resistance offered by Ukrainian forces in the six-days-old war.

The Moscow Stock Exchange will remain closed on Tuesday after the value of the ruble plunged. Western sanctions have crippled the Russian economy, and long queues have formed at banks as people desperately try to access their money.

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