Russia strikes the Ukrainian capital | New

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russia attacked Ukraine’s capital early Sunday, hitting at least two residential buildings, the mayor of Kyiv said, as Russian troops elsewhere fought to consolidate their gains in the east of the country. .

Associated Press reporters in Kyiv saw emergency services battling the flames and rescuing civilians. The attorney general’s office said preliminary information indicated that one person had been killed and four injured; Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said four people were taken to hospital with injuries and a 7-year-old girl was pulled alive from the rubble.

A nearby kindergarten was also damaged, with a crater in its yard.

A member of the Ukrainian parliament, Oleksiy Goncharenko, wrote on the Telegram messaging app that “according to preliminary data, 14 missiles were launched against the Kyiv and Kyiv region.” Air Force spokesman Yuriy Ignat said the missiles were Kh-101 air-launched cruise missiles fired from planes over the Caspian Sea.

In the town of Cherkassy, ​​about 160 kilometers (100 miles) southeast of Kyiv, one person was killed and five injured in two Russian rocket fire, regional governor Ihor Taburets said.

Early morning Russian airstrikes were the first to successfully target the capital since June 5.

Klitschko told reporters he thought “this may be a token attack” ahead of an upcoming NATO summit in Madrid.

Two more explosions were later heard in Kyiv, but their cause and possible victims were not immediately clear.

US President Joe Biden, as he stood alongside Olaf Scholz as the German Chancellor greeted leaders arriving to open a Group of Seven summit on Sunday, was asked about his reaction to the latest Russian missile strikes on Kyiv, said. “It’s rather their barbarity,” he replied.

Biden said the United States and other major G-7 economies intend to announce a ban on gold imports from Russia. They hope that this measure will further isolate Russia economically following its invasion of Ukraine.

Senior Biden administration officials have said gold is Moscow’s second largest export after energy and that banning imports would make it more difficult for Russia to participate in global markets.

Biden’s Twitter feed said Russia is “making tens of billions of dollars” from the sale of its gold.

Meanwhile, Russian forces fought to engulf the last remaining Ukrainian stronghold in the eastern Lugansk region, building on their momentum after taking full control of the city of Sievierodonetsk on Saturday, including a chemical plant where hundreds of Ukrainian soldiers and civilians were in hiding.

Luhansk Governor Serhiy Haidai said on Sunday that Russia was carrying out intense airstrikes on the nearby town of Lysychansk, destroying its television tower and badly damaging a road bridge.

“There is a lot of destruction – Lysychansk is almost unrecognizable,” he wrote on Facebook.

Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said late Saturday that separatist forces backed by Russia and Moscow now control Sievierodonetsk and the villages surrounding it. He said the attempt by Ukrainian forces to turn the Azot plant into a “stubborn center of resistance” had been thwarted.

The bombardment preceded a meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, during which Putin announced that Russia planned to supply Belarus with the Iskander-M missile system.

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Christi C. Elwood