The bombing continued this Friday on both sides of the front in Ukraine despite the unilateral ceasefire decreed by Russia on the occasion of the Christmas orthodox and USA promised massive new military aid to kyiv.
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This new aid will be of 3,000 million dollars and will include Bradley armored vehicles, reported the White House.
“This victorious year has only just begun”declared the Ukrainian presidency, adding that the US package also includes Himars precision missiles and Sea Sparrow anti-aircraft missiles.
military aid “It will make us much more prepared to deal with any escalation by Russia and the blows that that terrorist state inflicts on us, whether it is on a holiday or a working day”declared the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky.
The statements by the Ukrainian president occur on Orthodox Christmas Day, the majority faith in both Ukraine and Russia.
Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his troops a ceasefire the day before, following the call of the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church, Kirill, and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
However, in Bakhmut, a town located in the east of the country and that Moscow has been trying to conquer for several months, AFP journalists heard artillery fire from both sides of the front after the theoretical start of the truce, at 9:00 a.m. GMT.
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“Almost every day there are deaths”
Pavlo Diatchenko, a local policeman, said the truce was a Russian “provocation”. civilians “they are being bombed day and night and almost every day there are deaths”he asserted.
The Russian army assured, however, that it would respect its truce and accused the Ukrainian troops of “continuing to bombard Russian cities and positions.”
The deputy head of the Ukrainian presidential administration, Kirilo Timoshenko, reported two Russian bombardments in Kramatorsk and another in Kurakhove, in the east. He also reported a Russian bombardment on Kherson (south).
In the Lugansk region (east), local authorities reported 14 artillery shots and noted that civilians stayed “all day in their basements.”
For their part, the pro-Russian separatist authorities in eastern Ukraine reported several shelling attacks on their Donetsk stronghold before the ceasefire decreed by Russian President Vladimir Putin came into effect.
This was to be the first major truce in the Ukraine since the Russian invasion began on February 24.
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Ukraine, however, greeted the announcement with skepticism. Zelenski considered that it was an “excuse to stop the advance” of the kyiv troops in Donbas, in the east, and bring “equipment, ammunition and bring men closer to our positions.”
kyiv’s allies also greeted the announcement coldly. State Department spokesman Ned Price denounced a “cynical” measure for the attacks that took place this Friday in eastern Ukraine.
On Thursday, US President Joe Biden estimated that Putin was “looking for oxygen” with the announcement.
The head of European diplomacy, Josep Borrell, for his part, labeled the ceasefire as “hypocritical” and “not very credible”.
“The response that comes to all of us is skepticism in the face of so much hypocrisy,” he said during a visit in Fez, in Morocco.
Britain’s Foreign Secretary James Cleverly said on Thursday the ceasefire would “do nothing to advance the prospects for peace” and German diplomats said the truce would bring “neither freedom nor security” to Ukraine.
And France denounced a “crude attempt by Russia to hide its responsibility” while the attacks and bombings against Ukraine continue.
Russia claims to be willing to negotiate with Ukraine, provided it meets Russian demands and accepts the “new territorial realities” resulting from the invasion of the country.
Moscow claimed in September the annexation of four regions occupied at least partially by its army in Ukraine, just as it did with the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea in March 2014.
Zelensky, by contrast, insists on the full withdrawal of Russian forces from his country, including Crimea, before engaging in any dialogue with Moscow. Otherwise, he promises to take back the occupied territories by force.
I am Jack Morton and I work in 24 News Recorder. I mostly cover world news and I have also authored 24 news recorder. I find this work highly interesting and it allows me to keep up with current events happening around the world.