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The invasion of Ukraine: How Russia attacked and what happens next

Hours before the attacks began, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine made a dramatic televised plea to the people of Russia, saying he wanted to speak to them directly after Putin had rejected his phone call.

February 24, 2022 / 09:59 PM IST
(Image: AP)

(Image: AP)

After months of troop and tank buildups, of grim warnings of violence and vague assurances of peace, and of efforts at diplomacy in Washington, the halls of the United Nations and the capitals of Europe, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began early Thursday, with shelling and rocket attacks on several major cities including the capital, Kyiv.

Explosions thundered in the dim light before dawn, minutes after President Vladimir Putin of Russia cynically declared the start of a “special military operation” to “demilitarize” Ukraine but not occupy the country. His announcement came as the U.N. Security Council held an emergency meeting, stunning ambassadors who had to deliver impromptu reactions to the rapidly changing events.

Hours before the attacks began, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy of Ukraine made a dramatic televised plea to the people of Russia, saying he wanted to speak to them directly after Putin had rejected his phone call.

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