Ukraine: “unprecedented” attack on Kiev in full visit of a Chinese envoy

“A series of air raids on Kiev, unprecedented in their power, intensity and diversity, continues. This is the ninth consecutive air attack on the capital since the beginning of May!”, indicated the capital’s civil and military administration in a press release. .

read this alsoUkraine: Kiev targeted by a new attack, Europe confirms its support

According to him, cruise missiles were launched by Russian strategic bombers from the Caspian Sea region, and then reconnaissance drones flew over the capital. All enemy positions in the Kiev airspace have been detected and destroyed, he said. The capital’s mayor, Vitali Klitschko, said on a telegram that a company was on fire after falling debris, but there were no reports of injuries.

one death in odessa

On the other hand, one person was killed and two others were wounded in the port of Odessa on the Black Sea during an attack on an industrial site, according to the regional military administration.

The military also reported “cruise missile” attacks in the Vinnytsia region in the center of the country, and local media reported explosions in Khmelnitsky, about 100 kilometers further west. These new attacks come during a visit to Kiev by a senior Chinese official, Li Hui, special representative for Eurasian affairs and former ambassador to Moscow, who according to Beijing is supposed to discuss a “political solution” to the conflict.

Li Hui met with Ukrainian head of diplomacy Dmytro Kuleba on Wednesday, who “explained to the Chinese Special Representative the principles for restoring a lasting and just peace based on respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.” the ministry said. “He insisted that Ukraine does not accept any proposal that would damage its territories or escalate the conflict,” he said. In the long run, Kiev fears being pushed to accept a deal with Moscow, and demands the return of all territories annexed by Russia in 2014, including Crimea.

Possible meeting with Zelensky

A senior Ukrainian official told AFP on Wednesday on condition of anonymity that a meeting between Li Hui and President Volodymyr Zelensky was “possible”. The exchange would be the first between Zelensky, who encourages Beijing to pressure Russian President Vladimir Putin, and a senior Chinese official.

Li Hui’s travels should also take him to Poland, France, Germany and Russia. China, a close ally of Moscow, has never publicly condemned the Russian aggression. And during a visit to Moscow in March, President Xi Jinping offered strong symbolic support to Putin.

In February, Beijing offered a 12-point plan to end the war, which was viewed with suspicion by Western countries. Li Hui’s visit to Kiev came just after Zelensky’s European tour, during which he received promises of deliveries of new weapons needed to launch a major counteroffensive.

They were heard at many points – anti-aircraft missiles, drones, armored vehicles … – and moved towards the delivery of Western fighters, which Europeans are reluctant to provide. The United States also confirmed on Wednesday that a Patriot system was damaged by an unidentified projectile but remained operational. On Tuesday, the Russian military claimed to have destroyed a Patriot battery with a “high-precision strike” carried out “by a Kinjal hypersonic missile”.

Extended Grain Agreement

Washington had announced delivery of the Patriot system to Kiev in late 2022, capable of shooting down cruise missiles, short-range ballistic missiles and aircraft at much higher altitudes than the defense systems provided to that time.

The UN Security Council is due to meet on Thursday (7:00 pm GMT) to discuss the situation in Ukraine. Moscow and Kiev on Wednesday extended their crucial grain deal for global food, following mediation by Turkey and the United Nations.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that the agreement on the export of Ukrainian grain through the Black Sea, concluded in Istanbul in July 2022 and due to expire on Thursday evening, has been extended “for two months”. The agreement made it possible to export more than 30 million tons of Ukrainian grain over the past ten months and alleviate the world food crisis caused by the war. Its expansion is “good news for the world”, reacted António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations.

(with AFP)

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