MOSCÚ.-El ministerio de Defensa de Rusia ordenó hoy al Ejército iniciar una ofensiva en todas las direcciones tras acusar a Kiev de negarse a sentar en la mesa de negociaciones con el Kremlin.
«Después de que la parte ucraniana rechazara el proceso de conversaciones, hoy se les dio a todas las unidades la orden de iniciar una ofensiva en todas las direcciones en correspondencia con el plan de la operación”, declaró el portavoz del Ministerio de Defensa de Rusia, Ígor Konashénkov.
El militar recordó «tras las declaraciones del régimen de Kíev sobre su disposición al diálogo, se detuvieron las acciones de combate en las principales direcciones de la operación», pero la ofensiva se reanudó.
Konashénkov destacó el avance en el este ucraniano de las milicias separatistas de Donetsk y Lugansk, dijo que tomaron nuevos pueblos.
«Hoy las fuerzas de la república popular de Lugansk avanzaron a una profundidad de 46 kilómetros y tomaron los pueblos de Schastie y Murátovo”, informó, al destacar las milicias de Donetsk avanzaron unos 10 kilómetros y se apoderaron de Starognátovka, Otkiabrskaya y Pavlópol.
Russian forces launch full-scale invasion of Ukraine
Putin approves ‘special military operation’ as Russia launches an invasion of Ukraine by land, air and sea.
Russia has launched an all-out invasion of Ukraine by land, air and sea, the biggest attack by one state against another in Europe since World War II and confirmation of the worst fears of the West.
The attacks began on Thursday after Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a televised address that he had approved a “special military operation”. The move came after Moscow earlier recognised rebel-held territories in Luhansk and Donetsk and said they had asked for its “help”.
Russian missiles rained down on Ukrainian cities. Ukraine reported columns of troops pouring across its borders into the eastern Chernihiv, Kharkiv and Luhansk regions, and landing by sea at the cities of Odesa and Mariupol in the south.
Russian troops attacked Ukraine from Belarus as well as Russia with Belarusian support, and an attack was also being launched from annexed Crimea, Ukraine’s border guard service said.
Explosions could be heard before dawn in the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv. Gunfire rattled out near the main airport and sirens blared across the city.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said martial law had been declared and he appealed to world leaders to impose all possible sanctions on Russia, including on Putin, who he said wanted to destroy the Ukrainian state.
Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba wrote on Twitter that Putin had “launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine”.
“Peaceful Ukrainian cities are under strikes. This is a war of aggression. Ukraine will defend itself and will win. The world can and must stop Putin. The time to act is now,” he said.
Putin justified the attack as “a special military operation” to protect people, including Russian citizens who had been subjected to “genocide” in Ukraine, an accusation the West has long described as absurd propaganda.
“And for this, we will strive for the demilitarisation and denazification of Ukraine,” Putin said. “Russia cannot feel safe, develop, and exist with a constant threat emanating from the territory of modern Ukraine.”
Russia’s defence ministry said it had taken out military infrastructure at Ukrainian airbases and degraded its air defences.
Ukraine closed its airspace to civilian flights citing a high risk to safety, while Russia suspended domestic flights at airports near its border with Ukraine until March 2.