Two people were killed in bombing in a residential area in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kramatorsk. Russia also targeted the western city of Lviv on Friday, Ukraine’s military said.
Missiles fired by Russian forces hit an aircraft maintenance plant near the Polish border, which has been relatively safe so far.
Two million people have fled Ukraine to Poland as the war entered its fourth week, the Polish Border Guard agency said. The lion’s share of the refugees is flowing to Polish cities of Warsaw and Krakow, which are reportedly struggling to accommodate them.
Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said 9 humanitarian corridors to evacuate civilians from Russian attacks have been agreed for Friday.
Meanwhile, U.S. President Joe Biden is scheduled to call Chinese President Xi Jinping at 9 PM ET Friday to urge his Chinese counterpart not to provide Russia with military equipment in its war against Ukraine.
In a news conference just hours ahead of the talks between the two powerful world leaders, Chinese Foreign Affairs spokesperson Zhao Lijian said China respects the sovereignty and territorial integrity of all countries.
The call comes at a critical moment in the war, because Russia has requested military assistance from China as its military sustains major losses in Ukraine.
Russian onslaught is nearly stalled in several war fronts as a result of dogged resistance from Ukrainian forces, according to U.S, British military experts. Officially, the war is not at a stalemate; rather, the Ukrainians are actively resisting any movement by the Russians, even though the Russians have advantages in terms of their long-range missile fires, according to a senior U.S. Defense Department official.
“(The) Ukrainians are putting a lot of effort into defending Kyiv as you would expect them to do. (The) Ukrainians are the reason why (the Russians) haven’t been able to move forward. And it’s because they’re very actively resisting any movement by the Russians,” The Pentagon said in a press release.
“The Ukrainians are stalling the Russian advance in all areas and even operating now quite effective counter attacks. The Russians are losing a lot of equipment and troops,” BBC quoted Prof Michael Clarke, former director of the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) think tank, as saying.
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