Large explosions rock Kyiv after UN chief meets Ukrainian Zelensky – National
Two powerful explosions rocked central Kyiv on Thursday evening, shortly after UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
The explosions, which Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said took place in the Shevchenkivskyi neighborhood near the city center around 8 p.m. local time, sent large plumes of black smoke into the air.
At least 10 people were injured in the attack, including some who were trapped in rubble when two buildings were hit, relief officials said. Earlier reports that one person had died were later withdrawn.
The blasts could be heard across most of the city, but a wary Ukrainian population largely resisted calls to move to bomb shelters, continuing to sit in restaurants and spend the night as if habit.
About two hours after the initial strikes, at least two more explosions were heard in the capital.
The attack came shortly after Zelenskyy and Guterres held a press conference in which Guterres condemned atrocities committed by Russian soldiers in towns like Bucha, which he visited during the day.
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António Guterres also visited the devastated towns of Borodianka and Irpin, near Kyiv, and urged Russia “to agree to cooperate” with ongoing war crimes investigations by the International Criminal Court (IRCC).
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António Guterres called the war “absurd” and tweeted a photo of himself in front of a destroyed residential building in an undisclosed location, with the caption: “War is evil”.
Bulgarian Prime Minister Kiril Petkov was also in Kyiv for a meeting with Zelensky on Thursday. During Petkov’s visit, he discussed energy and logistical support with Zelenskyy and, according to a tweet, talked about exploring sending wheat through the Bulgarian port of Varina.
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Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba tweeted that Russia hit Kyiv with cruise missiles while the two dignitaries were in town.
“With this heinous act of barbarism, Russia once again demonstrates its attitude towards Ukraine, Europe and the world.”
So far, Kyiv has largely escaped the bombardments that have been inflicted on the rest of Ukraine.
Russian troops withdrew from the area surrounding Kyiv on March 31, after being largely pinned down in surrounding districts such as Bucha, Irpin and Hostomel.
–With files from The Associated Press
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