The Russia-Ukraine war has seen several ugly scenes. The Russian offensive is continuing despite sanctions imposed by several countries. A Russian offensive rocked cities in the south and east of Ukraine.
The governor of the region that includes Ukraine’s fourth-largest city, Dnipro, says the airport was hit twice by missile attacks on Sunday. The Ukrainian military command said Russian forces also kept shelling Ukraine’s second-largest city, Kharkiv, and have kept up their siege of Mariupol, the key southern port city that has been under attack for nearly six weeks.
Meanwhile, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said his government is providing investigative support to efforts to document war crimes in Ukraine, and he said Russian President Vladimir Putin is responsible.
The conflict began escalating on February 21, 2022, after Russian President Vladimir Putin recognised separatist regions in eastern Ukraine and deployed troops in a peacekeeping role.
Here are the latest updates
Russia strikes S-300 missile systems
Russia has destroyed S-300 anti-aircraft missile systems that had been supplied to Ukraine by a European country, Russia’s defence ministry said on Monday.
The ministry said that Russian sea-launched Kalibr missiles on Sunday destroyed four S-300 launchers that were concealed in a hangar on the outskirts of the Ukrainian city of Dnipro. Russia said 25 Ukrainian troops were hit in the attack.
Russia did not say which European country had supplied the S-300 systems.
Ukraine says nine humanitarian corridors agreed for Monday
Nine humanitarian corridors to evacuate people from Ukraine’s besieged eastern regions have been agreed for Monday between Kyiv and Moscow, including five in the Luhansk region, Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said.
The planned corridors include one for people evacuating by private transport from the city of Mariupol, Vereshchuk said.
Austrian leader heads to Moscow
Austria’s chancellor on Monday will become the first European leader to visit Moscow since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, as Kyiv prepares for a huge Russian offensive in the country’s east.
Karl Nehammer said he would meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin, and is expected to raise allegations of war crimes in devastated areas around Kyiv that were under Russian occupation, including the town of Bucha.
Ukrainian authorities say over 1,200 bodies have been found in the area so far and that they are weighing cases against “500 suspects,” including Putin and other top Russian officials.
Russian shelling has continued in Donetsk and Luhansk:UK
Russian shelling has continued in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, with Ukrainian forces repulsing several assaults resulting in the destruction of Russian tanks, vehicles, and artillery equipment, the UK’s Ministry of Defence tweeted in a regular bulletin on Monday.
The report said that Russia’s continued reliance on unguided bombs decreases its ability to discriminate when targeting and conducting strikes and greatly increases the risk of further civilian casualties.
Zelensky: Next few days of war are crucial
Ukraine’s president warned his nation Sunday night that the coming week would be as crucial as any in the war.
“Russian troops will move to even larger operations in the east of our state,” Volodymyr Zelensky said in his nightly address.
He accused Russia of trying to evade responsibility for war crimes.
“When people lack the courage to admit their mistakes, apologize, adapt to reality and learn, they turn into monsters. And when the world ignores it, the monsters decide that it is the world that has to adapt to them. Ukraine will stop all this, Mr. Zelensky said.
Ukrainian defenders dig in as Russia boosts firepower
As Ukrainian forces dug in on Sunday, Russia lined up more firepower and tapped a decorated general to take centralised control of the war ahead of a potentially decisive showdown in eastern Ukraine that could start within days.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky warned Sunday in his nightly address to the nation that the coming week would be as crucial as any in the war, saying “Russian troops will move to even larger operations in the east of our state.”
He also accused Russia of trying to evade responsibility for war crimes in Ukraine.
War to slash Ukraine’s GDP output by over 45%, World Bank forecasts
Ukraine’s economic output will likely contract by a staggering 45.1% this year as Russia’s invasion has shuttered businesses, slashed exports and rendered economic activity impossible in large swaths of the country, the World Bank said on Sunday.
The World Bank also forecasted Russia’s 2022 GDP output to fall 11.2% due to punishing financial sanctions imposed by the United States and its Western allies on Russia’s banks, state-owned enterprises, and other institutions.
The World Bank’s “War in the Region” economic update said the Eastern Europe region, comprising Ukraine, Belarus, and Moldova, is forecast to show a GDP contraction of 30.7% this year, due to shocks from the war and disruption of trade.
Chechen chief Kadyrov says Russian forces will take Kyiv
Ramzan Kadyrov, the powerful head of Russia’s republic of Chechnya, said early on Monday that there will be an offensive by Russian forces not only on the besieged port of Mariupol, but also on Kyiv and other Ukrainian cities.
In a video posted on his Telegram channel, Kadyrov said, “There will be an offensive … not only on Mariupol, but also on other places, cities and villages.”
“Luhansk and Donetsk – we will fully liberate them in the first place … and then take Kyiv and all other cities.“
Kadyrov, who has often described himself as Russian President Vladimir Putin’s “foot soldier,” said there should be no doubt about Kyiv
Ukraine braces for key battles on eastern front
Ukraine is preparing for “important battles” against Moscow’s forces in the east of the country, officials in Kyiv said, as Pope Francis on Sunday called for an Easter truce to end the war
Dozens of Ukrainians discovered in a grave near Kyiv
An unmarked grave with dozens of Ukrainian civilians has been found in Buzova village near Kyiv, an official said. It is the latest reported mass grave to be discovered as Russian forces retreat from their offensive on the capital and focus their assault on the east.
Taras Didych, head of the Dmytrivka community that includes Buzova, told Ukrainian television that the bodies were found in a ditch near a petrol station. The number of dead had yet to be confirmed.
Ukraine crisis to headline India-U.S. 2+2 dialogue
India and the U.S. will hold their fourth annual “2+2” defence and foreign ministry dialogue on April 11 in Washington, with the Russian invasion of Ukraine looming over the discussions and occupying a prominent place on the agenda.
In the first such dialogue of the Biden administration, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, who arrived in Washington on Saturday night, and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, who arrived on Sunday, will meet their counterparts, Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, in the first such dialogue.