Video Producer: Shohini Bose
Video Editor: Abhishek Sharma
Bombing continued in the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv on Tuesday, 1 March, with a Russian shell striking the Freedom Square in central Kharkiv, which houses local government offices, with a powerful explosion.
At least nine people lost their lives on Tuesday, including three children, and 37 were wounded after the Russian forces pummelled the city, The Guardian quoted city's mayor Ihor Terekhov as saying. Meanwhile, eight more were killed in a Russian airstrike on Kharkiv residential block, reported AFP.
A purported video of the event shows the blast detonating in front of the headquarters of the Kharkiv Oblast government.
"Barbaric Russian missile strikes on the central Freedom Square and residential districts of Kharkiv. Putin is unable to break Ukraine down. He commits more war crimes out of fury, murders innocent civilians. The world can and must do more. INCREASE PRESSURE, ISOLATE RUSSIA FULLY!" Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said in a tweet, sharing the video of the attack.
Meanwhile, expressing profound sorrow, the Indian Ministry of External Affairs confirmed that an Indian student was killed amid the explosions in Kharkiv on Tuesday morning.
This comes after at least 11 civilians were killed in the Russian shelling in Kharkiv, the second-most populated city of Ukraine, on Monday, as per Regional Governor Oleg Sinegubov.
In Kharkiv, 'Dozens of Civilians Lying on Streets'
"Dozens of dead civilians are lying in the middle of the streets, there are very seriously injured. Affected cars along with passengers burned to the ground. What is happening in Kharkiv now is a war crime! It is a genocide of the Ukrainian people," Sinegubov, who heads the Kharkiv military state administration, said to news agency AFP.
"As a result of the bombardments that are ongoing, we cannot call on the emergency services," he was quoting as saying.
“The missiles hit residential buildings, killing and injuring peaceful civilians. Kharkiv has not seen such damage for a very long time. And this is horrible,” the city's mayor was quoted as saying by The Guardian.
Following the bombardment of Kharkiv, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for a no-fly zone for Russian missiles, planes, and helicopters. A White House official, however, asserted the United States' (US') reluctance towards implementing a no-fly zone over Ukraine, which they said would result in a US-Russia confrontation.
Later in the day, he called it “frank, undisguised terror" and referred to it as a war crime. “Nobody will forgive. Nobody will forget... This is state terrorism of the Russian Federation," he added, AFP reported.
Meanwhile, as Russia's war on Ukraine continued for the sixth day on Tuesday, satellite images indicated that a 40 miles long (64 km) Russian military convoy was approaching capital city Kyiv from the north.
'Russian Advance to Kyiv Has Made Little Progress': UK Defence Report
The UK Ministry of Defence, in an intelligence update on the situation in war-ridden Ukraine, has said that the Russian military has made "little progress" in its approach towards Kyiv, and that its use of artillery in urban areas poses high risk of civilian casualties.
"The Russian advance on Kyiv has made little progress over the past 24 hours probably as a result of continuing logistical difficulties. The Russian forces have increased their use of artillery north of Kyiv and in the vicinities of Kharkiv and Chernihiv. The use of heavy artillery in densely populated urban areas greatly increases the risk of civilian casualties."
"Russia has failed to gain control of the airspace over Ukraine prompting a shift to night operations in an attempt to reduce their losses," the intelligence report added.