Ukraine officials report ‘100s of casualties’ after Russian missile horror
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The Ukrainian interior ministry has reported that there have been hundreds of casualties across the country following a wave of deadly missile strikes from Russia, according to CNN.
Explosions were seen in cities across Ukraine, including the capital Kyiv, after Russian President Vladimir Putin declared a 'special military operation' was underway in the region.
Reports coming out of Ukraine now suggest that hypersonic missiles are being used by the Russians to attack key targets.
Russian troops have also landed at Mariupol and are reportedly headed towards Kharkiv, the country's second largest city.
Taking to Twitter, Boris Johnson revealed that he has spoken with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
The PM wrote: "I am appalled by the horrific events in Ukraine and I have spoken to President Zelenskyy to discuss next steps. President Putin has chosen a path of bloodshed and destruction by launching this unprovoked attack on Ukraine. The UK and our allies will respond decisively."
Explosions were heard across Ukraine just minutes after the Putin finished a televised address just before 5am local time (3am UK time) on Thursday morning.
In the speech he said the nation was to be "demilitarised and de-nazified" as a result of his immediate military action, and accused Western powers of "crossing a red line" by building up NATO presence in the region.
He also warned that Russia would "react instantly" to foreign nations if they interfered with his operation, threatening a potential wider conflict.
Moments later footage emerged on social media from the Ukranian port city of Mariupol, located 30 miles from the border with Russia, appearing to show plumes of smoke rising in the aftermath of multiple explosions.
Explosions were also reported in Odesa, Kharkiv and the capital city of Kiev after the conclusion of Putin's speech.
The first scenes of war came at the same time as representatives from world powers pleaded in vain with Putin to "step back from the brink" at an emergency UN Security Council meeting.
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