Pictures and testimonies from inside Ukraine’s second largest city have revealed the extent of devastation caused by Russia’s aerial attack on civilian areas.
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The northeastern city of Kharkiv, home to 1.4 million people, has been “under the firepower of Moscow” since Vladimir Putin ordered an all-out invasion, Al Jazeera reported. “Street after street was destroyed” by the massive Russian shelling, with footage of broadcasters on the ground showing “rubble, bomb craters and twisted steel.”
Time’ war correspondent Anthony Loyd reported that “in Kharkiv’s hospitals, war faces were sculpted by flying glass and shrapnel”, with women “made up in stitches, skin Their wounds had bruises,” as “injured children stared from their beds, listless. with pain and trauma”.
“Better than any military map, it is their mutilated skin and ripped flesh that best chart the progress of the Russian campaign” to capture the city, he continued. “Cracked by air strikes, surface-to-surface missiles and artillery fire”, the attempt to capture Kharkiv had “evolved from military assault on a punitive bombardment“.
A destroyed city
Write to London Evening Standard From within the besieged city, Glib Mazepa, a former special correspondent for the now-closed Kyiv Post, said Kharkiv “has experienced one of the harshest attacks in this war between cities. Ukraine”.
Russian troops entered the city only once and “was smashed by our army within hours“, he continued. But they used “fire weapons from a distance”, which resulted in “merciless destruction of residential areas in the north of the city”.
Mazepa added: “Enemy planes drop bombs and missiles on parts that cannot be reached by other means. Svobody (Freedom) Square in the center, one of the largest squares in Europe, resembles World War II footage after it was hit by rockets.”
Sergey Bobok / AFP via Getty Images
Al Jazeera’s Charles Stratford said: “It was an absolutely shocking sight of devastation and misery. I am struggling to find words.
“This street in the center of Kharkiv shows just how devastating the Russian bombing of this city is. An entire street was completely destroyed. Many of these buildings have people’s homes in them. Some of them are still smoking.
“One of the main things people here tell you is that they can’t understand how a leader of a country like Russia could do something like this to a city like this. Kharkiv.”
New York Times said that the Russian bombing had also “devastated the heart of the city”, cutting off Kharkiv National University, the second oldest university in Ukraine. According to The Times, “regional administrative buildings in Freedom Square have borne the brunt of Putin’s attack”.
Talking to washington articlesKharkiv’s mayor Igor Terekhov warned Russia’s invading forces that “there is no question as to whether the city will give up”.
Terekhov has seen his city transform from a “prosperous metropolis” into “a chaotic war zone” in less than two weeks, the newspaper said. The Russian military “launched air, artillery and missile attacks on the residential areas and civilian infrastructure of Kharkiv, intentionally escalating a campaign about random deaths and destruction”.
“They are destroying entire districts, where a lot of people live,” said Terekhov. They just want to destroy and destroy the city.
“This is a pure example of a genocide, the genocide of the Ukrainian people.”
‘Come and check us out Putin’
Bombs and shells continue to fall on Kharkiv, despite widespread claims that civilians there are being killed indiscriminately.
On Sunday night, during a citywide blackout, “Russian jets roared from above, bombing targets lighting up darkness in fireballs, as buildings shook with repeat explosion,” said The Times‘ Loyd. The next morning, he saw “two jet bomb victims, a teenager and a 44-year-old woman, in the resuscitation unit.”
Irena Sydorenko, 35, who suffered shrapnel injuries and dislocated her pelvis after “a Russian rocket exploded under her fifth-floor apartment”, told Loyd that people in the city were “just waiting” Putin came to the streets of Kharkiv to discuss his money. The army is working hard to avoid killing civilians.”
“Come and check us out here, Vladimir Putin. Take a look at the accuracy of your artillery,” she said.
Sergey Bobok / AFP via Getty Images
Al Jazeera reported that “many people were hiding in underground metro stations, where the elderly and children patiently stood in line for soups, salads and sandwiches served by volunteers”. Others are trying to leave on trains “towards the western cities of Lviv, Ternopil and Ivano-Frankivsk,” Mazepa told the London Evening Standard.
The trains “leave constantly,” with people “packed in them as densely as sardines in a can,” he wrote. But there is no space for everyone stuck in the city.
“The Ukrainian army will fight to the end,” Mayor Terekhov told The Washington Post. “They are our heroes. They were fighting with their own weapons on their own land. They won’t give up.”
And “even between pain and fear,” “there is room for stoicism and dark humor,” Loyd told The Times.
A couple, Oleg and Victoria Ilchinskyi, told him that “their balcony disappeared in an instant” and that “the windows blew at us in a storm of explosions and heat” when a Russian rocket was fired. hit their apartment.
Minutes later, their daughter called from Brussels to check that they were safe.
“So I got a bloodied phone call on the street,” Victoria said, “our house behind us was in ruins, dust everywhere, glass on our skin, it was almost impossible to stand.”
But she “takes a deep breath, pulls herself together and says, ‘Don’t worry, honey, everything is fine here. ”
https://www.theweek.co.uk/news/world-news/russia/956012/inside-kharkiv-city-bearing-hideous-cost-ukraine-war Inside Kharkiv: the city pays the ‘disgusting cost’ of the Ukraine war