Russia has captured Kherson, a city south of Ukraine, head of regional administration Gennady Lakhuta said in a Telegram message, Al Jazeera reported.
“The (Russian) occupiers are in all parts of the city and are very dangerous,” he wrote.
Kherson is the administrative centre of Kherson Oblast and an economic centre. It is an important port on the Black Sea and on the Dnieper River, and the home of a major ship-building industry.
With this confirmation from local officials, the Ukrainian city of Kherson becomes the first major urban centre to fall since Moscow invaded.
As bombings continue, Russian military attacks have hit three schools and a cathedral in the northeastern town of Kharkiv, local media reported, adding that several shops near the city council building were also damaged.
In Okhtyrka, dozens of “residential buildings” were destroyed as a result of artillery blasts, the reports said.
No injuries have been reported.
On the eight day of the invasion. Ukrainian media say several “massive explosions” have been heard in Kyiv, triggering air raid sirens amid fighting on the outskirts of the capital, Thursday morning.
Residents were told to seek shelter immediately, the Ukrainian UNIAN news agency reported, without providing more details.
Kyiv’s Mayor Vitali Klitschko said in a Telegram post that “the enemy is trying to break through into the capital”. He said no casualties had been reported.
According to Bangladesh’s state shipping company, a Bangladeshi sailor on Tuesday was killed in a “rocket or bomb” attack on his vessel in the Black Sea port of Olvia.
The Banglar Samriddhi, a bulk carrier, arrived in Ukraine a day before Russia invaded, and has since been unable to leave.
The ship’s remaining 28 crew members – all Bangladeshis – remain safe, an official at the Bangladesh Shipping Corporation told AFP news agency.
At least one million people have fled Ukraine since Russia’s invasion, the United Nations said, warning that “at this rate” the exodus could become “the biggest refugee crisis this century”.
This number is more than two percent of Ukraine’s population, which the World Bank said was 44 million at the end of 2020.
The United Nations General Assembly Wednesday approved a non-binding resolution condemning Russia for the invasion of Ukraine and demanding an immediate withdrawal, Al-Jazeera reported.
The vote saw 141 countries in favour, five against and 35 abstaining.
“People in Ukraine desperately need peace and people around the world demand it,” UN chief Antonio Guterres said in an interview after the vote.
China, India and South Africa were among the 35 countries that abstained, while Eritrea, North Korea, Syria, Belarus and Russia, voted against it.
Support PREMIUM TIMES' journalism of integrity and credibility
Good journalism costs a lot of money. Yet only good journalism can ensure the possibility of a good society, an accountable democracy, and a transparent government.
For continued free access to the best investigative journalism in the country we ask you to consider making a modest support to this noble endeavour.
By contributing to PREMIUM TIMES, you are helping to sustain a journalism of relevance and ensuring it remains free and available to all.
TEXT AD: Call Willie - +2348098788999