Ukraine updates: UK to send US-made rocket systems

What is happening in Ukraine today and how are countries around the world responding? Read live updates on Vladimir Putin and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

LONDON – Britain says it will send sophisticated medium-range rocket systems to Ukraine, in a coordinated move with the United States.

Defense Secretary Ben Wallace says the UK will send an unspecified number of M270 launchers, which can send precision-guided rockets up to 50 miles.

Britain says the decision has been closely coordinated with the US decision to send high-mobility artillery rocket systems to Ukraine. The two missile systems are similar, although the American one is wheeled, while the British one, also built in the United States, runs on tracks.

Britain says Ukrainian troops will be trained in the UK to use the equipment.

Ukraine has implored its Western allies to send longer-range missiles to help it counter Russian artillery strikes in the eastern Donbas region, the focus of Moscow’s offensive.

The United States said Ukraine has promised not to launch the weapons at Russia. But Russia accused Washington of “adding fuel to the fire” of the conflict.


KYIV, Ukraine — Ukraine emergency officials said overnight Russian shelling set a school in the city of Kharkiv on fire and a woman died in the blaze.

Another man was injured, Ukrainian officials said Thursday. Fires from the shelling also occurred in other areas of the Kharkiv region.

Russian forces overnight also shelled the Dnipropetrovsk region, its governor, Valentyn Reznichenko, said on Telegram. He said the shelling took place on the border with the Kherson region, much of which is under Moscow’s control.

In the Sumy region, on the border with Russia, three people were injured as a result of missile strikes overnight, Governor Dmytro Zhyvytskyi said.

In the east, according to the Ukrainian General Staff, Russian troops continued to storm the key city of Sievierodonetsk. Moscow forces also stormed the town of Komyshuvakha in the southeastern region of Zaporizhzhia, much of which is under Russian control, according to the morning update from the General Staff.


BRATISLAVA, Slovakia: Slovakia signed an agreement to deliver eight Slovakian-made Zuzana howitzers to Ukraine.

The Slovak Defense Ministry announced on Thursday the agreement between the state company Konstrukta Defense and the Ukrainian side.

Unlike previous arms supplies from Slovakia to Ukraine, this is a trade deal. Defense Minister Jaroslav Nad says it is worth more than €40 million (US$43 million).

Among other weapons, Slovakia previously donated a Soviet-era S-300 air defense system at the request of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.


LVIV, Ukraine — A Russian missile hit railway tracks in the western Lviv region, a key conduit for Western weapons and other supplies, authorities said.

Lviv region governor Maksym Kozytskyy said five people were injured in the attack, adding that more information would be available on Thursday.

Anton Gerashchenko, adviser to the country’s interior minister, said the Russians attacked the Beskidy rail tunnel in the Carpathian mountains in an apparent effort to sever a key rail link and disrupt arms and fuel shipments.

However, the head of the Ukrainian railways said the damage to the railway was still being assessed, but the tunnel was saved.

The strike reportedly delayed three passenger trains, but all resumed travel later.


KYIV, Ukraine — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Wednesday that 200,000 children are among the Ukrainians who have been forcibly taken to Russia and scattered across the vast country. They include children from orphanages, children taken with their parents and separated from their families.

“The purpose of this criminal policy is not only to rob people, but to make those who are deported forget about Ukraine and cannot return,” Zelenskyy said in his late-night video address to the nation on Wednesday, which was International Labor Day. Little boy.

Zelenskyy said Ukraine would punish those responsible, but would first show Russia on the battlefield that “Ukraine cannot be conquered, our people will not surrender, and our children will not become the property of the occupiers.”

Zelenskyy said that 243 children have been killed so far in the war, 446 have been injured and 139 are missing, adding that it could be more as his government does not have a complete picture of the situation in the areas occupied by Russian troops.

He then described the deaths of 11 children, calling them by name and telling how they were killed.


LVIV, Ukraine — A regional governor in western Ukraine said a Russian airstrike on transportation infrastructure wounded two people on Wednesday.

The governor of the Lviv region, Maksym Kozytskyy, did not name the target of the Russian attack near the city of Lviv.

Anton Gerashchenko, adviser to the country’s interior minister, said the Russians attacked the Beskidy rail tunnel in the Carpathian mountains in an apparent effort to sever a key rail link and disrupt arms and fuel shipments.

The Lviv region has served as a key conduit for the supply of Western weapons and other supplies.


KYIV, Ukraine — The Ukrainian Orthodox Church said Wednesday that two monks and a nun were killed in the shelling of a historic monastery in eastern Ukraine.

The church said in a statement that three monks were also injured in Monday’s shelling, which badly damaged the Sviatohirsk monastery in the Donetsk region. He did not give more details.

The monastery, located on the steep right bank of the Seversky Donets River, is one of the most important historical Orthodox monasteries in Ukraine.

The monastery provided shelter for civilians fleeing the fighting and had previously been hit by Russian shelling as Russian troops advanced their offensive in Donbass.


KYIV, Ukraine — A Ukrainian regional governor said Wednesday that Russian troops have taken control of about 80 percent of the key city of Sievierodonetsk.

Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai said Russian troops were advancing amid fierce street battles with the city’s Ukrainian defenders. He noted that in some districts the Ukrainian troops managed to push back the Russians.

Sievierodonetsk, the administrative center of the Lugansk region, has been the focus of Russia’s offensive in Ukraine’s eastern industrial heartland, Donbas. It has come under relentless Russian bombardment, and Haidai said Tuesday that a Russian airstrike hit a nitric acid tank at a chemical factory, releasing toxic fumes.


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