Ukraine updates: Falling missile debris causes fires in Kyiv
Air raid sirens sounded across Ukraine and explosions were reported in the capital, days after air defenses largely repelled a Russian missile attack.
The Ukrainian military on Thursday reported explosions in the capital, Kyiv, and in central and southern Ukraine, after air raid sirens sounded across the country.
Kyiv residents were asked to remain in shelters while warnings were issued for other regions, including Zhytomyr west of the capital and Kirovohrad, Cherkasy and Dnipropetrovsk in central Ukraine.
"According to preliminary information, the fall of debris was recorded in the Darnytskyi district of the capital. Data on victims and destruction are currently being verified," Serhii Popko, head of Kyiv's civil and military administration, wrote on Telegram.
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said there were no immediate reports of casualties after falling debris caused a fire in a garage facility in Darnytskyi. He warned people to remain in shelters.
The military also reported "cruise missile" attacks in the central Ukrainian region of Vinnytsia.
Officials in the southern city of Odesa said one person had been killed by a Russian missile strike on an industrial facility.
Two more people were injured in the Odesa attack, military administration spokesman Serhiy Bratchuk posted on Telegram.
Thursday's explosions came after Russia launched what Ukrainian officials described as an "exceptional" attack that included hypersonic missiles. Ukrainian air defenses largely repelled that missile attack on Tuesday.
Since late April, Russia has launched a flurry of attacks, often targeting Kyiv, after a weekslong hiatus.
Here are some of the other notable developments concerning Russia's war in Ukraine on Thursday, May 18:
China's special envoy urges talks in Kyiv visit
China's special envoy for Eurasian affairs Li Hui has told Ukraine there's no immediate remedy to the conflict as he repeated calls for Kyiv and Moscow to engage in talks to end the war.
A strategic ally of Russia, China has refrained from condemning Moscow's invasion, and has instead sought to act as a mediator.
Earlier this week, Li visited Ukraine and is the highest-ranking Chinese official to do so since the war began.
"There is no panacea to resolve the crisis, and all parties need to start from themselves, build mutual trust and create conditions to stop the war and talk," said Li, according to a statement by Beijing's foreign ministry.
Top EU diplomat asks for €3.5 billion for Ukraine aid: report
Josep Borrell, the European Union's foreign policy chief, has proposed adding €3.5 billion ($3.85 billion) to a fund used to finance military aid for Ukraine, Reuters news agency reported citing EU sources.
According to the report, Borrell asked EU governments to raise the financial ceiling on the European Peace Facility (EPF), a fund that has already allocated some 4.6 billion euros in military aid for Ukraine.
First established in 2021, the EPF was the EU's fund intended to help developing countries buy military equipment. It was later used to get arms to Ukraine after Russia's full-scale invasion started last year.
"We have to top up," Reuters quoted the EU official as saying. "The gist of the European Peace Facility... has a universal character. It was not conceived by Ukraine. It was conceived for any conflict that the European Union could deal with."
G7 leaders to discuss tighter Russia sanctions
Leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) countries are due to arrive in Hiroshima, Japan, ahead of a 3-day summit.
Tighter sanctions on Russia top their agenda.
"There will be discussions about the state of play on the battlefield," said US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, adding that leaders would focus on further deterring Russia off the battlefield with tighter sanctions.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is expected to address the summit, which formally kicks off on Friday, by video link.
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For months, Ukraine has been planning a counteroffensive to push the Russian invaders further back. International aid and military sophistication could be key to a successful counteroffensive.
jsi, fb/sms, rs (AFP, Reuters, dpa, AP)