Ukraine is braced for fresh bloodshed TODAY amid fears Russian troops will launch wave of attacks on country’s Independence Day
- US State Dept report says Russia is planning civilians attacks in Ukraine today
- The move on Independence Day may coincide with PoW caged for their trials
- Today is the 31st anniversary of Ukrainian vote of independence from the USSR
- President Volodymyr Zelensky promised a ‘powerful response’ to any attacks
Russia is planning attacks on civilian targets today, Ukraine’s Independence Day, it was claimed yesterday.
The threat emerged last night in an intelligence report declassified by the US State Department.
In another sickening move Russia may also use today’s anniversary to start trials of Ukrainian prisoners of war – with the defendants forced to watch proceedings from cages.
Local residents yesterday pass by as workers demolish a multi-storey apartment block, which was destroyed in the course of Ukraine-Russia conflict in the Russian-controlled city of Mariupol
Russia is planning attacks on civilian targets today, Ukraine’s Independence Day, it was claimed yesterday in an intelligence report declassified by the US State Department
President Volodymyr Zelensky (pictured) promised a ‘powerful response’ to any attacks on Ukrainian soil today
Pictures have emerged of huge steel cages being constructed inside Mariupol’s philharmonic hall where the trials are due to be held.
Last night the prospect of soldiers who were legally defending their homeland being caged was condemned by the United Nations.
Today is the 31st anniversary of the vote in the Ukrainian parliament to unshackle the country from the Soviet Union.
It is also exactly six months since Russia launched its invasion which has failed to achieve any of its strategic objectives.
The threat of further Russian attacks on civilian targets saw the British and US governments reissue warnings to its citizens to leave Ukraine.
And there are fears Moscow could use the death of Darya Dugina – whose father Alexander was a close Putin adviser – – to justify further attacks.
‘In the face of Putin’s assault, we must continue to give our Ukrainian friends all the military, humanitarian, economic and diplomatic support that they need,’ said Prime Minister Boris Johnson
Downing St says it with flowers…
Downing Street is adorned with a floral arch in the colours of the Ukrainian flag to mark the nation’s independence from Soviet rule today.
From Cardiff City Hall to the British Library, Blackpool Tower to Wembley Arch, landmarks across the UK will light up in blue and yellow in solidarity with Ukrainians.
Celebrations in Kyiv for the 31st anniversary are banned amid fears of Russian attacks on Ukraine’s capital.
The warnings came as Boris Johnson told the Ukrainian parliament the UK would continue to support the country against Russian aggression.
He also insisted Britain would never recognise Russia’s annexation of Crimea ‘or any other Ukrainian territory’.
Mr Johnson said: ‘It has never been more important for all of us to stand together in defence of the foundational principle of international law, which is that no territory, no country, can acquire territory or change borders by force of arms, and it so follows that we will never recognise Russia’s annexation of Crimea or any other Ukrainian territory.
‘In the face of Putin’s assault, we must continue to give our Ukrainian friends all the military, humanitarian, economic and diplomatic support that they need.’
President Volodymyr Zelensky promised a ‘powerful response’ to any attacks on Ukrainian soil today.
As a precaution, pubic celebrations of Independence Day have been banned in Kyiv and other major cities.
A curfew was announced in Kharkiv and, across the country, Ukrainians have been advised to work from home.
Trials of captured soldiers from Ukraine’s Azov brigade could begin as soon as today, according to intelligence sources.
The men have been in Russian captivity since the end of the siege of the Azovstal steelworks in Mariupol in May.
They are being put on trial by pro-Russian separatists in occupied areas of southern Ukraine. They may also appear before judges while caged inside huge steel enclosures.
Last night UN human rights official Ravina Shamdasani said: ‘We are very concerned about the way this is being done.’ Of the cages, she added: ‘This is not acceptable, this is humiliating.’
Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Mr Zelensky, added: ‘The trial of the captured defenders represents yet another Russian war crime. They are combatants who legally defended their country.’
In another sickening move Russia may also use today’s anniversary to start trials of Ukrainian prisoners of war – with the defendants forced to watch proceedings from cages inside Mariupol’s philharmonic hall. Pictured: A Russian soldier in a hall of the Philharmonic in Mariupol, on the territory which is under the Government of the Donetsk People’s Republic control
Dina, 81, reacts after arriving from Mariupol to an evacuation point in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine