Ukraine-Russia war latest: Corpses left in the street as Russian missiles hammer Kherson

People look at a damaged residential building after the recent Russian attack, in Kherson
People look at a damaged residential building after the recent Russian attack, in Kherson

Civilians told of watching loved ones die as Russia renewed strikes on Kherson a day after 10 people were killed and 54 wounded in the recently liberated southern city.

Corpses were left on the streets after Moscow forces fired a barrage of missiles while residents sifted through what little remained of their destroyed houses and shops on Friday.

There was no phone signal to call emergency services after Russian troops destroyed the city's infrastructure as they fled the city two weeks ago.

Lilia Kristenko, 38, said her mother Natalia's dead body lay covered in a blanket in the doorway of her apartment building for hours overnight after city workers were  too overwhelmed to retrieve her.
The 62-year-old had walked outside her home with her husband Thursday evening after drinking tea when the building was struck.

Clutching her cat inside her coat as she watched responders transport her mother to the morgue, she said: "Russians took the two most precious people from me."

05:15 PM

Today's top stories

The blog is now closed. Here are today's top stories:

  • Ukrainian refugees have been told not to bring their pets with them to Ireland as Dublin struggles to house those fleeing Putin’s war

  • Vladimir Putin appeared emotional during a choreographed chat with mothers designed to reassure Russians that he cared about their sons dying in Ukraine

  • Nearly half of Kyiv residents were still without electricity Friday, the Ukrainian capital's mayor said, two days after Russian strikes battered the country's already struggling energy grid

  • Russian reservists with "serious, chronic health conditions" are fighting in Ukraine, with "particularly heavy casualties" in those digging trenches under fire around the city of Svatove, according to the Ministry of Defence

  • Poland's government will propose that gas tariffs for households be frozen at 2022 levels, the climate minister said on Friday

04:23 PM

Ukraine moves Kherson patients over 'constant' Russian shelling

The governor of Ukraine's southern Kherson region said that hospital patients in the region's recently recaptured main city of Kherson were being evacuated due to constant attacks from Moscow's forces.

"Due to constant Russian shelling, we are evacuating hospital patients from Kherson," Yaroslav Yanushevich said on social media, noting that children at one regional hospital were being transported to the neighbouring Mykolaiv region.

04:11 PM

Ukrainian refugees told not to bring pets to Ireland

Ukrainian refugees have been told not to bring their pets with them to Ireland as Dublin struggles to house those fleeing Putin’s war, writes James Crisp.

The Irish government could charge Ukranians if they insist on bringing their animals with them or give refugees details of local animal charities instead of housing the pets.

More than 62,000 Ukrainians have arrived in Ireland and that number is expected to rise to 72,000 by the end of the year.

Numbers are expected to rise because of the continuing Russian bombardment, which has targeted energy systems, ahead of an expected cold winter in Ukraine.

Ireland has offered a warm welcome to Ukrainians but its asylum and housing system is creaking under the pressure with about three quarters of all arrivals requiring state housing.

04:00 PM

Poland and Germany near deal to keep Russian oil pledge with Schwedt in sight

Poland is seeking German support to slap EU sanctions on the Polish-German section of the Druzhba crude pipeline so Warsaw can abandon a deal to buy Russian oil next year without paying penalties, two sources familiar with the talks have told Reuters.

The sources also said the pair are nearing an agreement for Poland to coordinate seaborne oil supplies to Germany via Gdansk and part of Druzhba to facilitate Poland's purchase of the Russian-owned Schwedt refinery in Germany.

The EU has pledged to stop buying Russian oil via maritime routes from Dec 5 but Druzhba is currently exempt from sanctions. That presents a problem for Polish refiner PKN Orlen which has a long-term deal to purchase Russian oil via the pipeline and would need to pay penalties to break the contract.

02:40 PM

Ukrainian troops training in Donetsk

Ukrainian soldiers train in an abandoned brick building in Sloviansk, Donetsk - ANATOLII STEPANOV/AFP
Ukrainian soldiers train in an abandoned brick building in Sloviansk, Donetsk - ANATOLII STEPANOV/AFP
Ukrainian soldiers in Sloviansk, Donetsk, before heading back to the frontline - ANATOLII STEPANOV/AFP
Ukrainian soldiers in Sloviansk, Donetsk, before heading back to the frontline - ANATOLII STEPANOV/AFP
Ukrainian soldiers train in an abandoned brick building in Sloviansk, Donetsk - ANATOLII STEPANOV/AFP
Ukrainian soldiers train in an abandoned brick building in Sloviansk, Donetsk - ANATOLII STEPANOV/AFP

02:04 PM

Putin 'ignored relatives of soldiers killed in Ukraine'

Vladimir Putin ignored pleas to meet with relatives of Russian soldiers killed in Ukraine, a group of mothers and wives has said.

It follows a pre-recorded TV clip in which the Russian President told another group of mothers "we share your pain".

Olga Tsukanova, head of the Council of Mothers and Wives, said: "The mothers will ask the 'correct' questions that were agreed beforehand.

"Vladimir Vladimirovich - are you a man or who are you? Do you have the courage to meet us face to face, openly, not with pre-agreed women and mothers who are in your pocket, but with real women who have travelled from different cities here to meet with you? We await your answer."

01:48 PM

Holding company of 'Russia's Google' cutting ties with Russia

The Dutch holding company of the Russian internet giant Yandex has announced plans to divest ownership and control of most of Yandex Group, with the international divisions of some services to be developed outside Russia.

Yandex N.V. said it had started a "strategic process to review options to restructure the group's ownership and governance in light of the current geopolitical environment".

"As part of the intended restructuring of the group, the board anticipates that Yandex N.V. will in due course be renamed, with the business to be divested retaining exclusive rights for the use of the Yandex brand," Yandex N.V. said in a statement.

Russian President Vladimir Putin and former finance minister Alexei Kudrin addressed the future of Yandex in a late-night meeting, three people familiar with the matter told Reuters on Friday.

Yandex N.V. said the strategic process was at a preliminary stage and that any changes would ultimately require shareholder approval.

01:28 PM

Poland to freeze gas tariffs at 2022 levels

Poland's government will propose that gas tariffs for households be frozen at 2022 levels, the climate minister said on Friday.

"(We are proposing) a 100% freeze on the gas tariff that households will pay at this year's level, we are talking about a net amount," Anna Moskwa told a news conference.

01:25 PM

Ukrainians gather in shelters for warmth after nationwide power outages

01:05 PM

'I feel your pain' Putin tells soldiers' mothers

Vladimir Putin has met with the mothers of soldiers posted in Ukraine and said: "We share your pain."

The Russian President and the group of mothers sat around a table with tea, cakes and bowls of fresh berries at his residence near Moscow.

In a recorded TV clip, he said: "I want you to know: I personally and the entire leadership of the country share this pain.

Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with mothers of Russian servicemen participating in Russia-Ukraine conflict - SPUTNIK/REUTERS
Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with mothers of Russian servicemen participating in Russia-Ukraine conflict - SPUTNIK/REUTERS

"We understand that nothing can replace the loss of a son, a child."

Saying he had no regrets over his so-called "special military operation" against Ukraine, he added that some news about the conflict could not be trusted.

"There is a lot of fake news, deceit and lies," he said.

The mothers’ comments to the president were not immediately shown in the clip.

Russia's President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with mothers of Russian servicemen participating in Russia-Ukraine conflict - SPUTNIK/REUTERS
Russia's President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with mothers of Russian servicemen participating in Russia-Ukraine conflict - SPUTNIK/REUTERS

12:59 PM

Pictures, frontline near Bakhmut

Ukrainian military's Grad multiple rocket launcher fires rockets at Russian positions in the frontline near Bakhmut - Libkos/AP
Ukrainian military's Grad multiple rocket launcher fires rockets at Russian positions in the frontline near Bakhmut - Libkos/AP
Ukrainian military's Grad multiple rocket launcher fires rockets at Russian positions in the frontline near Bakhmut - Libkos/AP
Ukrainian military's Grad multiple rocket launcher fires rockets at Russian positions in the frontline near Bakhmut - Libkos/AP
Ukrainian servicemen prepare to fire at Russian positions in the frontline near Bakhmut - Libkos/AP
Ukrainian servicemen prepare to fire at Russian positions in the frontline near Bakhmut - Libkos/AP

11:47 AM

Germany to declare Stalin's starvation of Ukrainians a 'genocide' in 'warning' to Putin

Germany is set to declare the 1930s stavation of millions in Ukraine under Joseph Stalin a "genocide" in a "warning" to Russia as Ukraine faces a potential hunger crisis this winter due to Moscow's invasion.

A draft text seen by AFP on Friday said MPs are set to approve the resolution, adopting language used by Kyiv, in a vote next week.

Holodomor, as the famine is known in Ukraine, is among "the list of inhuman crimes by totalitarian systems in which millions of human lives were wiped out" in the first half of the 20th century, the draft text reads.

"People across Ukraine, not just in grain-producing regions, were impacted by hunger and repression. This meets the historical-political definition from today's perspective for genocide."

The 1932-33 "Holodomor" is regarded by Kyiv as a deliberate act of genocide by Stalin's regime with the intention of wiping out the peasantry.

11:33 AM

Kremlin adds Facebook-owner Meta to its list of 'extremist organisations'

Russia's justice ministry added Facebook-owner Meta Platforms to its register of extremist organisations on Friday, the Kommersant newspaper reported.

A Russian court earlier this year ruled Meta had engaged in "extremist activity". Moscow has restricted access to Facebook and Instagram as part of a campaign against Western social media platforms.

09:55 AM

It's up to Germany to send Patriot air defences to Ukraine instead of Poland, says Nato

The decision whether to send Patriot air defence units to Ukraine lies with the specific nations, Nato's chief said when asked about Polish demands for Germany to pass on Patriot units to Kyiv.

The Polish government had said Germany should hand over patriot missile launchers it initially offered to Poland to Ukraine instead, adding it would help secure both the airspace of both countries.

Germany made the offer to deploy its Patriot air-defence system in Poland after a stray missile, believed to be Ukrainian, killed two people last week when it crashed near a Polish village close to the Ukrainian border.

The decisions over specific systems are national decisions, Nato Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told reporters, adding that end user agreements and other arrangements sometimes meant that consultations with other allies were required.

Patriot is produced by the US company Raytheon.

09:34 AM

Nearly half of Kyiv residents remain without power

Nearly half of Kyiv residents were still without electricity Friday, the Ukrainian capital's mayor said, two days after Russian strikes battered the country's already struggling energy grid.

"A third of houses in Kyiv already have heating and specialists continue to restore it. Half of consumers are still without electricity," Mayor Vitali Klitschko said.

"During the day, energy companies plan to reconnect electricity for all consumers on an alternating basis," he wrote on Telegram, as temperatures approached freezing.

The head of national electricity operator Ukrenergo, Volodymyr Kudrytskyi, said repair work was ongoing across the country and that the grid had already "passed the most difficult stage" after the most recent attacks.

People charge batteries of their mobile phones at "Points of Invincibility", special shelters established for all basic services across the country after power cuts - Anadolu Agency
People charge batteries of their mobile phones at "Points of Invincibility", special shelters established for all basic services across the country after power cuts - Anadolu Agency
Kyiv surviving power and water outages. After Wednes'day attack 70% of people in Kyiv have no electrical power at home - Anadolu
Kyiv surviving power and water outages. After Wednes'day attack 70% of people in Kyiv have no electrical power at home - Anadolu

09:29 AM

Nato 'won't back down' support of Ukraine

Nato will not let down in its support of Ukraine and also ramp up non-lethal aid for the country, Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said on Friday.

"Nato will continue to stand with Ukraine for as long as it takes. We will not back down," he told reporters in Brussels ahead of a foreign ministers' meeting of the alliance in Bucharest next week.

09:09 AM

Crimean air defences triggered

The air defence system has been triggered in the town of Armiansk in Russia-annexed Crimea peninsula, TASS news agency quoted a local mayor as saying on Friday.

09:08 AM

Putin to meet soldiers' mothers today

President Vladimir Putin will on Friday meet the mothers of soldiers fighting in Ukraine, the Kremlin said, as the deadliest conflict in Europe since World War Two grinds into its 10th month.

The war in Ukraine has killed and wounded tens of thousands of soldiers on both sides, according to the United States, and the Russian invasion has triggered the biggest confrontation between Moscow and the West since the 1962 Cuban Missile crisis.

Hundreds of thousands of Russian soldiers have been sent to fight in Ukraine - including some of the more than 300,000 reservists who were called up as part of a mobilisation announced by Putin in September.

"On the eve of Mother's Day, which is celebrated in Russia on the last Sunday of November, Vladimir Putin will meet with the mothers of servicemen participating in the special military operation," the Kremlin said in a statement.

The Kremlin said Putin would meet with mothers of reservists called up to fight as well as professional soldiers of the armed forces.

09:08 AM

Zelensky urges Europeans to stay united against Russia

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday called on Europeans to remain united against Russia's war as he addressed a conference in Lithuania.

"There is no split, there is no schism among Europeans and we have to preserve this. This is our mission number one this year," Zelenskiy said via a video link.

08:12 AM

'Seriously ill' reservists sent to fight and dig trenches under fire, MoD says

Russian reservists with "serious, chronic health conditions" are fighting in Ukraine, with "particularly heavy casualties" in those digging trenches under fire around the city of Svatove, in the Luhansk region, according to the Ministry of Defence.

Reservists have also been killed in "large numbers" in frontal assaults into well-established Ukrainian defensive zones in the Donetsk region, around the city of Bakhmut, its daily intelligence briefing said.

Ukrainian soldiers are seen in a tank as military mobility proceeds in Bakhmut - Anadolu
Ukrainian soldiers are seen in a tank as military mobility proceeds in Bakhmut - Anadolu

"Two months after President (Vladimir) Putin announced a 'partial mobilisation', common themes are emerging in the experience of mobilised Russian reservists.

"Their deployment is often characterised by confusion over eligibility for service, inadequate training and personal equipment, and commitment to highly attritional combat missions.

"Most - though not all - mobilised reservists have previously served and numerous examples suggest that reservists are highly likely not having their medical status adequately reviewed and many are being compelled to serve with serious, chronic health conditions.

 A wounded Ukrainian soldier is being taken to the hospital to be treated as military mobility proceeds in Bakhmut - Anadolu
A wounded Ukrainian soldier is being taken to the hospital to be treated as military mobility proceeds in Bakhmut - Anadolu

"Mobilised reservists have highly likely experienced particularly heavy casualties after being committed to dig ambitious trench systems while under artillery fire around the Luhansk Oblast town of Svatove."

07:55 AM

Boris Johnson made honorary citizen of Kyiv

Former PM Boris Johnson has been awarded the title of the honorary citizen of Kyiv.

Kyiv Mayor Vitaliy Klitschko posted on Telegram: "The Kyiv City Council approved a decision to award Boris Johnson, a great friend of Ukraine, the title of honorary citizen of Kyiv.

"Boris visited the Ukrainian capital several times – both in peacetime and in the most dramatic time of our struggle against the Russian aggressor.

"Johnson has done and, I am sure, will continue to do everything possible so that Great Britain and world leaders provide the necessary assistance to Ukraine. We thank you for your support! We are waiting for you in Kyiv again to present this honorable award!"

Mr Johnson was previously given the title of Doctor Honoris Causa by The Academic Council of the Ivan Franko National University of Lviv.

A Cossack chapter in Chernihiv has bestowed the title of a Cossack on Boris Johnson with a painting of him on display at the local museum
A Cossack chapter in Chernihiv has bestowed the title of a Cossack on Boris Johnson with a painting of him on display at the local museum

07:52 AM

Ukrainians in 'survival mode' as they crowd into cafes to stay warm

Residents of Ukraine's bombed capital clutched empty bottles in search of water and crowded into cafes for power and warmth Thursday, switching defiantly into survival mode after new Russian missile strikes a day earlier plunged the city and much of the country into the dark.

In scenes hard to believe in a sophisticated city of 3 million, some Kyiv residents resorted to collecting rainwater from drainpipes, as repair teams labored to reconnect supplies.

Friends and family members exchanged messages to find out who had electricity and water back. Some had one but not the other. The previous day's aerial onslaught on Ukraine's power grid left many with neither.

Cafes in Kyiv that by some small miracle had both quickly became oases of comfort on Thursday.

Oleksiy Rashchupkin, a 39-year-old investment banker, awoke to find that water had been reconnected to his third-floor flat but power had not. His freezer thawed in the blackout, leaving a puddle on his floor.

07:51 AM

Millions without water and power

Ukraine today battled to get water and power to millions of people cut off after Russia launched dozens of cruise missiles that battered the country's already crippled electricity grid.

The energy system in Ukraine is on the brink of collapse and millions have endured emergency blackouts over recent weeks.

The World Health Organization has warned of "life-threatening" consequences and estimated that millions could leave their homes as a result.

"The situation with electricity remains difficult in almost all regions," Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Thursday evening. "However, we are gradually moving away from blackouts - every hour we return power to new consumers."

More than 24 hours after Russian strikes smashed Kyiv, mayor Vitali Klitschko said late Thursday that 60 percent of homes in the capital were still suffering emergency outages. Water services had been fully restored however, said city officials.

07:51 AM

James Cleverly to meet Volodomyr Zelensky

James Cleverly has announced a package of "hands-on" support to help Ukraine through the winter while on a visit to the war-torn nation.

The Foreign Secretary was due to meet President Volodymyr Zelensky during his visit, which comes days after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak travelled to Kyiv.

Mr Cleverly announced the practical support as Ukraine's power grid and other critical infrastructure has been pounded by Russian strikes, causing blackouts and leaving millions without heat, power or water as temperatures plummet.

The UK will send 35 more emergency vehicles, including 24 ambulances and six armoured vehicles, to the country.

The Foreign Secretary also announced a further £3 million for the rebuilding of local infrastructure including schools and shelters, as well as additional funding to support survivors of sexual assault.

Mr Cleverly said: "As winter sets in, Russia is continuing to try and break Ukrainian resolve through its brutal attacks on civilians, hospitals and energy infrastructure. Russia will fail."

James Cleverly visits Kyiv, as Russia's attack on Ukraine continues - UKRAINIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY PRESS SERVICE/REUTERS
James Cleverly visits Kyiv, as Russia's attack on Ukraine continues - UKRAINIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY PRESS SERVICE/REUTERS
James Cleverly and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba meet - UKRAINIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY PRESS SERVICE/REUTERS
James Cleverly and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba meet - UKRAINIAN FOREIGN MINISTRY PRESS SERVICE/REUTERS