- Straight Last hour of the war in Ukraine
Ukraine urged the citizens of Kherson to leave the regional capital for the winter due to the Russian attacks from the left bank of the Dniper River and the destruction of critical infrastructure, which has left millions of Ukrainians without water, heat and electricity and may have to live with blackouts until March.
“I am addressing the citizens of Kherson, in particular the vulnerable: women with children, the elderly, the sick and people with reduced mobility. Given the difficult security situation in the city and the infrastructure problems, they can go during the winter to regions safest in the country,” said the Deputy Prime Minister of Ukraine on her Telegram channel, Iryna Vereschuk.
EVACUATION FOR THE WINTER
The also Minister for the Reintegration of the Temporarily Occupied Territories of Ukraine stressed that the Government offers evacuation to Krivi Rog, Mykolaiv and Odessain addition to Kirovogrado and Khmelnitsky or the west of the country, and provide accommodation, humanitarian aid, food and medical assistance.
Deputy Chief of Staff of the Presidency of Ukraine, Kyrylo Tymoshchenkodenounced that the “vile Russian terrorists, after fleeing from Kherson, began to shoot civilians”, since the day before in one of the city’s neighborhoods a missile hit an apartment and one person died in the hospital.
The Russian attacks against the city have been taking place for three consecutive days, according to local authorities, in addition to the difficult humanitarian and energy situation.
The head of the operator of the electricity transmission system, Ukrenergo, Volodmir KudrytskyiHe explained on Tuesday that Russia purposely blew up and mined “almost the entire energy infrastructure” in Kherson before withdrawing from the right bank of the Dniper.
In the neighboring region of Mykolaiv there is power for now and the province is helping Kherson to restore electricity, the region’s governor Vitaliy Kim said today.
At the moment kyiv has not called for the evacuation of Mykolaiv, where Russian troops withdrew in parallel to their withdrawal from north of Kherson with the exception of the Kinburn peninsula.
Spokesperson for the Southern Command of Ukraine, Natalia Gumenyuksaid today that the operation to liberate the peninsula, which is connected to the still occupied territory of Kherson on the left bank of the Dniper River and is located opposite the important port of Ochkiv and also close to Odessa, continues.
The Ukrainian forces can benefit from the fact that the enemy is surrounded by water and the strong storms in this area at this time of the year in their offensive, he added.
COLOSSAL DAMAGE TO THE ENERGY NETWORK
The energy situation is no better in other parts of the country. Ukraine’s Deputy Energy Minister for European Integration Yaroslav Demchenkov said on Friday that “millions of people were left in the dark and cold without water, heating or electricity.”
Russia hit 15 Ukrenergo facilities in its most massive attack on Ukraine’s electrical infrastructure exactly one week ago, Kudrytskyi said.
“After this attack, we have practically no healthy thermal and hydroelectric power plants left in Ukraine. In addition, there are almost no undamaged substations left,” he said at a press conference. “The scale of destruction is colossal,” he emphasized.
Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said on Friday that nearly half of the country’s power system had been knocked out in last Tuesday’s bombing.
All this when temperatures have dropped below zero degrees and the first snowfalls have been recorded.
The World Health Organization (WHO) warned on Monday that millions of Ukrainians face a “mortal” threat from the effects of war and the energy crisis.
The overload in the current circumstances of planned power cuts to stabilize the system has caused additional blackouts to be applied this Tuesday.
UNPLANNED BLACKOUTS AND APPEALS FOR SAVINGS
“Currently, the power system cannot generate as much electricity as consumers would like to consume,” Kudrytskyi explained.
The Ukrainian president, Volodmir Zelensky, therefore asked citizens and companies to limit consumption in areas where there are more difficulties, especially during rush hours.
The situation is particularly difficult in kyiv and its region, and in the Vinnytsia, Sumi, Ternpil, Cherkasy and Odessa oblasts.
Serhiy Kovalenko, CEO of the Yasno energy company, with some 3.5 million customers in Ukraine, wrote on Facebook that “workers are doing everything they can to restore the grid before the weather gets even colder.”
“And although there are fewer blackouts now, I want everyone to understand: Ukrainians will most likely have to live with blackouts until at least the end of March,” he warned.
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