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Latest Ukraine-Russia news: Putin may use chemical weapons, Britain warns as Russian missiles hit Lviv

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Smoke billows from Lviv airport as air raid sirens sound after Russian shelling

An aircraft repair plant was hit this morning by Russian rockets fired at the western Ukrainian city of Lviv.

The building near Danylo Halytskyi International Airport – Ukraine’s second-busiest airport – was destroyed, the city’s mayor Andriy Sadovy said, but no one was hurt.

Lviv – near the border with Poland – had so far been largely spared by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which began on February 24.

Meanwhile, 130 people have been rescued from the rubble of an air raid shelter under a theater in Mariupol so far.

The theater was attacked by Russian forces on Wednesday, despite the word “children” written on the floor in Russian outside.

Ukraine’s Human Rights Ombudsman Lyudmyla Denisova said rescue work continued at the site where many women and children sought shelter underground before the building was hit.

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Putin could use chemical weapons for ‘false flag operations’, defense minister warns

Ben Wallace has warned Vladimir Putin against using chemical weapons in his invasion of Ukraine as a “false flag operation”.

Pondering what the world can expect next from the Russian President, the defense minister made three suggestions in a ConservativeHome Items:

The first: “Recourse to encirclement followed by sustained bombardment and siege”

Second: “Introduction of chemical weapons into the conflict. Either with a false flag operation to try to justify more violence, or as a purely military tactic like we saw sarin gas used in Syria.”

Third: “Try to widen the conflict to distract from failure. Putin may feel that the way out of the hole he has made for himself is to thrash about and hope that other nations will join the fight and therefore give him an excuse to escalate.”

Chiara GiordanoMarch 18, 2022 12:02 p.m

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Baby carriages set up in central Liviv to represent children killed since the Russian invasion

This stunning photo shows prams set up in central Lviv to represent the dozens of children who have been killed since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24.

According to Ukraine’s Prosecutor General’s Office, 109 children have been killed and more than 130 injured so far.

Chiara GiordanoMarch 18, 2022 11:50 am

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Video: Smoke billows from Lviv airport as air raid sirens sound after Russian shelling

Smoke billows from Lviv airport as air raid sirens sound after Russian shelling

Chiara GiordanoMarch 18, 2022 11:40 am

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Czech designer makes ‘Zelensky pillows’ to help Ukraine

A Czech designer has come up with a novel way to raise money for Ukrainians suffering from the war in their country – by making pillows with the portrait of their President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who he says has become a sex symbol for some.

A woman works on a pillow case with a portrait of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Ceska Lipa

(Eva Korinkova/Reuters)

Zelensky, tired, unshaven but defiant in his signature green T-shirt, has become the face of the Ukrainian resistance to the Russian invasion, rallying his compatriots from his bunker in Kyiv in daily broadcasts on social media.

“A lot of people, especially the fair sex, see him as a kind of sex symbol, so I got the idea to make a pillow that looks like he’s actually in their bed,” designer Tomas Brinek told Reuters.

Brinek, who runs a satirical Instagram channel called TMBK, which has more than 540,000 followers and usually poke fun at politicians, said his handmade limited edition cushions have attracted more than 2,000 orders and cost around 420,000 kroner (£14,000) for one War-affected Ukrainians collected charity aid.

Chiara GiordanoMarch 18, 2022 11:25 am

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Angry Ben Wallace blasted officers over prank call

Defense Secretary Ben Wallace expressed his anger at British officials over a prank call from an imposter claiming to be Ukraine’s prime minister, a fellow minister said.

Armed Forces Secretary James Heappey said Mr Wallace “could give a good fuck” after the apparent security breach the government has accused Russia of.

adam woods has the whole story:

Chiara GiordanoMarch 18, 2022 11:10 am

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130 people rescued from Mariupol Theater after airstrike

A total of 130 people have so far been rescued from an air-raid shelter under a theater in Mariupol that was hit by an airstrike on Wednesday.

The theater was hit by Russian forces even though the word “Children” was written in Russian on the floor outside.

Ukraine’s human rights ombudsman Lyudmyla Denisova said rescue work was underway at the spot where many people sought shelter underground before the building was hit.

Here is our original story about the bombing:

Chiara GiordanoMarch 18, 2022 11:01 am

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The zoo is asking people to buy e-tickets to help feed starving animals

Besieged Mykolaiv Zoo in Ukraine is urging people to buy e-tickets to help feed its animals as the city comes under fire.

The zoo’s director, Volodymyr Topchyi, decided to stay and help the stressed animals when half of its staff were evacuated while others went to war.

Photos shared on the zoo’s Facebook page show mussels stuck in the ground.

In an update, he said tickets to the zoo sold out a month in advance as people from around the world gathered to support the attraction, while other zoos and organizations sent food and medical supplies.

Chiara GiordanoMarch 18, 2022 10:55 am

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Video: Minister says Ben Wallace is ‘quite upset’ by fake call in Ukraine

Defense Secretary James Heappey says Defense Secretary Ben Wallace was “pretty upset” and asked “tough questions” after being attacked by a prank call from someone claiming to be Ukraine’s prime minister. writes Francesca Casonato.

Mr Heappey said Mr Wallace “could give a good fuck” after the apparent security breach the government has accused Russia of.

Minister says Ben Wallace is ‘quite upset’ by fake call in Ukraine

Chiara GiordanoMarch 18, 2022 10:14 am

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Poland wants to “de-Trussify” the economy and calls for a NATO mission

According to Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, Poland is striving for economic independence from Russia.

Morawiecki at a meeting with Volodymyr Zelensky and Slovenian Prime Minister Janez Jansa

(Press Office of the President of Ukraine)

Poland, which has taken in more than 2 million Ukrainian refugees, intends to “de-Trussify” its economy, he said.

This would be achieved by building new gas pipelines and subsidizing farmers for rising fertilizer prices to keep food prices down, Mr Morawiecki suggested.

Poland will formally present a proposal for a peacekeeping mission in Ukraine at the next NATO summit, he said.

Lamiat SabinMarch 18, 2022 09:50

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Watch: Blaze destroys Barabashovo market in Kharkiv

Fire has devastated one of Eastern Europe’s largest markets after it was reportedly hit by Russian shelling.

Ukrainian MP Lesia Vasylenko shared online the clip of the fire at Barabashovo market hall in the city of Kharkiv, northeastern Ukraine.

Kharkiv’s Barabashovo market is on fire after Russia bombed one of Eastern Europe’s largest shopping malls

According to the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture, up to 15,000 companies have settled there.

Ms. Vasylenko wrote: “The Kharkiv Barabashovo market is on fire – one of the largest in Eastern Europe. Lavina Mall destroyed in Kyiv. Almost like Russia bombing commercial areas out of spite.”

Lamiat SabinMarch 18, 2022 9:40 am

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/ukraine-russia-today-war-putin-talks-zelensky-latest-deaths-b2038868.html Latest Ukraine-Russia news: Putin may use chemical weapons, Britain warns as Russian missiles hit Lviv

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