Reports from one of the Ukrainian cities badly affected by Russia’s indiscriminate artillery attack on Tuesday Suggested that Russia could do better than its latest promise to allow civilians to flee. But even if the ceasefire in the northeastern city of Sumi continues and Russia keeps its promise to allow “humanitarian corridors” to leave other cities, it will be a small saving in a tragedy that will deepen by the hour.
The United Nations said on Tuesday that more than 2 million people had been evacuatedInside the neighboring countries since Russia began its brutal invasion 13 days ago.
The office of President Volodymyr Zhelensky said that the Ukrainians would trust the Kremlin’s permission only when evacuations were taking place in Sumi, the capital Kiev and the affected cities of Chernihiv, Kharkiv and Mariupol. At least three localized ceasefires have collapsed, with Ukraine and Russia blaming each other for violating the ceasefire, and reports of new violations quickly emerged on Tuesday in the southern port city of Mariupol.
A local official in Sumi said evacuations were ongoing, but many were not given a chance to escape, according to Charles D’Agata, a senior foreign correspondent for CBS News.
Emergency crews removed the wreckage of an apartment building in Sumi that had been leveled by Russian airstrikes overnight. They found no survivors, only lifeless bodies, including families with children. At least 20 people were killed in a strike in Sumi alone on Monday evening, local officials said.
But even as Russian forces surrounded the major cities –– Towards Kiev, not all Ukrainians fled. D’Agada says Ukrainian defense forces continue to face fierce opposition, and he met with civilians in the capital as he dug to defend their city.
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