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LIVE – War in Ukraine: Odessa airport hit by Russian strike, runway destroyed

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Friday, April 29 was marked by the aftermath of the bombings that occurred in kyiv during the visit of the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres. On the diplomatic field, Vladimir Putin was invited to the G20, which angered Washington. Follow the latest information live.

8:40 p.m.

Twenty civilians left the Azovstal factory in Mariupol, a port in southeastern Ukraine besieged by the Russians, on Saturday to be evacuated to Zaporijjia, the Azov regiment which defends the site announced.

“Twenty civilians, women and children (…) have been transferred to an agreed location and we hope that they will be evacuated to Zaporizhia, on the territory controlled by Ukraine”, declared Svyatoslav Palamar, deputy commander of the Azov regiment in a video on Telegram. A few hours earlier, the official Russian agency Tass announced that a group of 25 civilians, including six children, had been able to get out of Azovstal, a huge steelworks where hundreds of Ukrainian soldiers and civilians are blocked.

8:33 p.m.

A Russian reconnaissance plane briefly violated Swedish airspace on Friday, the Scandinavian country’s staff announced on Saturday, whose authorities are considering a possible NATO candidacy following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. .

“A Russian AN-30 propeller plane violated Swedish airspace on Friday evening,” the Swedish Defense Department wrote in a statement, adding that its teams had followed the entire incident and had photographed it.

6:42 p.m.

The airport of Odessa, a port city in southern Ukraine, was hit on Saturday by a Russian strike which destroyed the runway, without causing any casualties, announced the governor of the region Maxim Marchenko.

“Today the enemy struck from Crimea by a Bastion coastal defense missile system. The runway at Odessa airport was destroyed. Thank God there were no casualties,” the governor said in a video on his Telegram account.

Eight people were killed in Russian strikes a week ago on the historic city of Odessa of nearly a million inhabitants, so far relatively spared from the fighting.

The Russian army then claimed to have targeted with “high precision missiles” a large depot of weapons delivered to Ukrainian forces by the United States and European countries, near Odessa.

5:37 p.m.

Fourteen Ukrainians, including a pregnant woman, have been freed in a new prisoner exchange with Russia, kyiv announced on Saturday, without as usual revealing the number of Russians who have been handed over to Moscow.

“Today, we proceeded to a new exchange of prisoners. Fourteen of ours are returning home, seven soldiers and seven civilians. One of the servicewomen is five months pregnant,” Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said on Telegram.

In a BBC interview on Friday, Ms Vereshchuk accused Russia of “deporting” large numbers of civilians across the border and using them as “hostages”.

“They took all these hostages – civilians, women, local council workers, to try to use them,” she said. “We know there are over a thousand hostages there, including nearly 500 women,” she said. “We know that they are in prisons and in remand centers in Kursk, in Bryansk, in Ryazan, in Rostov”.

4:02 p.m.

The bodies of three visibly tortured and shot dead men were found in a grave near Boutcha on Friday with their hands tied and blindfolded, kyiv police said on Saturday.

“The victims were tortured for a long time (…) In the end, each of them received a bullet in the temple,” Kyiv region police chief Andriy Nebytov said in a statement.

“The victims had their hands tied, clothing around their faces so they couldn’t see anything and some had gags in their mouths,” he added.

The bodies of these three men were found in Myrotske, a village near Boutcha, a town near kyiv that has become a symbol of the atrocities of the war in Ukraine and in which many corpses of civilians have been discovered.

4:00 p.m.

“On the phone with President Zelensky, I expressed my desire to continue to work for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. Our support in military equipment will continue, our humanitarian aid also with already more than 615 tons of equipment transported”, wrote Emmanuel Macron on his official Twitter page.

1:53 p.m.

France will “reinforce” the sending of military equipment to Ukraine as well as its humanitarian aid to this country, the Elysée announced on Saturday after a meeting between re-elected President Emmanuel Macron and his counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky.

While the Ukrainian President thanked him for “consignments of large-scale military equipment which contribute to the Ukrainian resistance”, the French Head of State “indicated that this support will continue to be reinforced, as well as the humanitarian assistance provided by France”, adding according to a press release that “the mission of French experts contributing to the collection of evidence to fight against impunity and allow the work of international justice relating to crimes committed within the framework of Russian aggression, will extend”.

1:03 p.m.

The bodies of three visibly tortured and shot dead men were found in a grave near Boutcha on Saturday with their hands tied and blindfolded, kyiv police said on Sunday.

“The victims were tortured for a long time (…) In the end, each of them was shot in the temple,” kyiv police chief Andrii Nebytov said in a statement, adding that they had the hands tied, blindfolded and for some a gag in the mouth.

12:30 p.m.

Head of State Emmanuel Macron spoke at noon with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on the situation in the country.

This is not the first time that the French president has met with his counterpart since the start of the Russian offensive in Ukraine on February 24.

12:21 p.m.

Russia said its artillery units hit 389 Ukrainian targets overnight, including 35 checkpoints, 15 arms and ammunition depots and several areas where Ukrainian troops and equipment were concentrated. Similarly, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced that its missiles hit four ammunition and fuel depots.

11:02

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense claimed on Twitter to have destroyed more than 1,000 Russian tanks since the start of the war. More than 23,000 Russian soldiers were also reportedly killed.

07:12

Russian forces maintained their pressure on the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine on Saturday, particularly around Kharkiv in the northeast, where they are trying at all costs to increase their control, despite, according to kyiv, setbacks on the field. Violent explosions were heard overnight from Friday to Saturday in Kharkiv, the country’s second largest city, pounded for weeks by Russian artillery.

Friday, these bombardments made at least one dead and several wounded, according to the regional military administration of Kharkiv.

07:01

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov urged NATO and the United States to stop delivering weapons to kyiv if they “are really interested in resolving the Ukrainian crisis”.

In an interview published on Saturday by the official New China Agency, Lavrov also said that the Russian offensive in Ukraine is proceeding “according to plans”. “A continuous flow of weapons of all kinds entered Ukraine through Poland and other NATO countries,” Lavrov said.

“If the United States and NATO are really interested in resolving the Ukrainian crisis, then above all they must wake up and stop delivering weapons and ammunition to the kyiv regime,” added the head of Russian diplomacy. .

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