Russia’s massive missile strike kills 25 people, including four children. Seven EU foreign ministers arrive in Odesa. Counteroffensive is not to be considered as final battle, Ukraine’s Foreign Minister says.
Russia’s massive missile strike claims 25 lives, including four children
Russia launched another major missile strike against Ukrainian cities overnight into Friday. Ukraine’s air defenses shot down 11 missiles and two drones near Kyiv. A missile destroyed an entire block of a nine-story apartment building in Uman, in Cherkasy region. A missile strike on Dnipro killed a woman and a child.
An air raid alert was declared across Ukraine in the early hours of Friday. In Kyiv, an air raid warning was issued at 4:02 a.m., and the all clear was given at 6:14 a.m. The Ukrainian capital was massively targeted by missiles for the first time since more than 50 days.
The overnight attack killed 25 people and injured 20 others in three regions — Cherkasy, Kyiv, and Dnipro.
In Uman, two missiles tore into several apartment buildings, causing destruction to an entire block of one of the houses. Twenty-three people were killed, including four children, and 18 others were injured. Cherkasy region declared three official days of mourning.
A woman and a two-year-old child were killed in Dnipro.
In Ukrainka, in Kyiv region, two people, including a child, were injured as missile debris fell on an apartment building.
“Russian terror must face a fair response from Ukraine and the world,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi said. “Every such attack, every evil act against our country and people brings the terrorist state closer to failure and punishment,” he added. The missile strikes are “Russia’s response to all peace initiatives,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said on Twitter. “The way to peace is to kick Russia out of Ukraine,” the Minister said.
Seven EU foreign ministers arrive in Odesa
On Friday, April 28, the foreign ministers of Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Iceland, and a senior Foreign Ministry official from Finland arrived in Odesa at the invitation of Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba.
”I honestly don’t remember if Odesa ever hosted this many ministers of foreign affairs at once. If this is the first such time, we are glad, together with our colleagues, to set a new standard,” Kuleba said. “The visit began with a conference on reconstruction of Odesa region. It sends a clear signal, and I am truly grateful that the ministers have accepted an invitation to take part in the conference,” Kuleba told a news conference.
He said that together with his counterparts he visited the port of Odesa, where he was briefed on implementation of the Black Sea Grain and Grain from Ukraine initiatives. The ministers also discussed preparations for a NATO summit in Vilnius, opening of talks on Ukraine’s accession to the EU, and establishment of a special tribunal to prosecute Russia for the crime of aggression against Ukraine.
Kuleba asked his counterparts to accelerate decisions on training of Ukrainian pilots to fly F-16 fighter jeys.
Five months ago the ministers were in Kyiv, Kuleba said. “We have decided to hold our next meeting in Crimea. We will work to achieve the goal,” Ukraine’s Foreign Minister said.
Counteroffensive not to be considered as final battle, Ukraine’s Foreign Minister says
Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba called not to treat a Ukrainian counteroffensive as a decisive battle. A final battle will lead to complete liberation of Ukraine’s territories, he said.
“Counteroffensive should not be treated as a final battle. A decisive battle will lead to complete liberation of Ukrainian territories. We could make the conclusion after, not before the battle,” Kuleba told a joint news conference with his counterparts from Nordic and Baltic countries.
“If we need one counteroffensive, there will be one, if we need two or more counteroffensive operations, let it be so. This is not a conflict one could freeze,” Kuleba said.
People who consider counteroffensive as a final battle, “distort Ukraine’s efforts”. He added that Ukraine will fight until the victory.
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- Heorhii Tykhyi, Communications Adviser to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine
- Liubov Tsybulska, Leading Expert on Hybrid Threats in Ukraine
- Alim Aliev, Deputy General Director of Ukrainian Institute