As the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues in its second week, the civilian death toll is rising, with several cities in dire need of supplies after Russian troops broke pledges to uphold evacuation corridors. If you’re just tuning in, here’s the latest:
Zelensky’s warning: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky appeared in his Kyiv office in a video published on Monday, in which he applauded the efforts of the military and said he would continue pursuing talks with Russia.
In a separate interview on ABC World News Tonight with David Muir on Monday, Zelensky warned that the war will not stop at Ukraine.
“Everyone thinks that we are far away from America or Canada,” he said. “No, we are in this zone of freedom. And when the limits of rights and freedoms are being violated and stepped on, then you have to protect us. Because we will come first. You will come second. Because the more this beast will eat, he wants more, more, and more.”
Evacuation corridors: Several attempts to evacuate civilians during temporary ceasefires have failed, with Western leaders accusing Russian forces of continuing to target pre-approved routes.
On Sunday, a Russian strike hit an evacuation crossing point outside Kyiv, killing eight people including two children trying to flee the invasion.
On Monday, Ukraine’s Ambassador to the UN accused Russia of blocking attempts to evacuate civilians, adding it was “appalling” that Russian troops were opening fire on evacuees after both countries had allocated certain roads to be utilized as evacuation corridors.
Almost all of Russia’s proposed routes out of Ukraine lead to Russia or its close ally Belarus, which Ukrainian authorities described as unacceptable.
Russia proposed a new temporary halt to its attack on five cities on Tuesday — Kyiv, Chernihiv, Sumy, Kharkiv and Mariupol — to allow civilians to flee. Ukraine has yet to formally respond.
The military standoff: Russia’s attacks intensified on Monday, though the main advance towards Kyiv by Russian forces remains “stalled,” according to a senior US defense official. The official did not have an update on how far away a large Russian military convoy is from Kyiv’s city center.
Russia has already committed “nearly 100%” of the combat power that had been staged on the border of Ukraine and in Belarus, according to a senior US defense official on Monday.
The US announced Monday an additional 500 US troops would be deployed to Europe to reinforce NATO’s flank, including Poland, Romania, Germany and Greece. These are meant to support US forces already in Europe, US officials said. The Biden administration has repeatedly said it would keep US troops out of the conflict.
Casualties and refugees: United Nations officials say more than 1,200 civilian casualties have been recorded in Ukraine, with at least 406 people killed — though they say it is difficult to identify the actual number of deaths and injuries. CNN cannot independently verify the casualty numbers.
More than 1.7 million people have now fled Ukraine since the war began, with the UN warning the number could reach five million.