Missiles or a plane were apparently intercepted over the Ukrainian capital. The President sees himself as the "number one target" of the invasion.
Several explosions have shaken the capital Kiev. The Ukrainian army said on its Facebook account that "rocket fire" was aimed at Kiev and claimed to have destroyed two of these missiles in flight. Previously there had been various reports that it might have been an airplane.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba tweeted: "Terrible Russian rocket attacks on Kiev. The last time our capital saw anything like this was in 1941 when it was attacked by Nazi Germany." Kuleba again called for tougher sanctions against Russia and Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin.
Among other things, one was hitmulti-storey apartment building on the east bank of the Dnipro River, where fire broke out, the city administration announced on Telegram. Three people were injured. Mayor Vitali Klitschko published a video on the social network Telegram showing fires on several floors of the building. One of the injured is in critical condition, he wrote.
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The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense also reported Russian rocket fire in the Zaporizhia region of southern Ukraine. The attack on a border guard unit killed and injured.
Enemy plane shot down over Kiev
Loud explosions can be heard in the center of Kiev, according to the AFP news agency. Journalists who are on site also report explosions on Twitter, as does the Russian news agency Interfax.
According to an AFP reporter, two loud explosions were heard. Advisor to Ukraine 's Deputy Interior Minister, Anton Herashchenko, wrote on his Telegram account: "Attacks on Kiev with cruise missiles or ballistic missiles have started again. I heard two powerful explosions." According to Herashchenko, Ukrainian forces shot down an enemy plane over Kiev.The plane crashed into a residential building and set it on fire, he wrote in a message via the Telegram messenger service. It is still unclear whether the aircraft was manned.
EU sanctions target 70 percent of Russia
EU leaders have agreed on financial sanctions targeting 70 percent of Russia's banking market. The package of "massive sanctions" shows how united the EU is, writes EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen in a tweet. The sanctions also target key state-owned companies, including defense.
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At the press conference that followed, von der Leyen also declared that Russian President Vladimir Putin would fail. She continues on Twitter:
Putin is trying to subjugate a friendly European country. He tries to redraw the map of Europe by force. He must and will fail. Ursula von der Leyen
Central Bank of Russia guarantees business for sanctioned banks
The Central Bank of Russia and the government have pledged all support to banks affected by Western sanctions and have guaranteed all their operations in Russian rubles and foreign currencies. All banking transactions with customers in rubles would continue as usual. The payment of credit balances in foreign currencies is also guaranteed. In the afternoon, the US and the EU imposed punitive measures against seven major Russian banks.
Over the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The aim is to exclude the banks from the international financial markets. They should no longer be allowed to borrow or lend money in the EU. Their shares will also no longer be traded in the EU.
Stock markets in the USA and Asia are picking up again
After the slump on the stock markets triggered by the Russian attack on Ukraine, the markets in the USA and Asia are showing a positive trend again. New York's Wall Street slipped significantly into the red at the start of trading on Thursday, and at the end of the trading day the most important indices closed in the black again. Likewise, Asian bourses in Tokyo, Shanghai, Singapore and Hong Kong are all up Friday morning local time.
As a result of the Ukraine invasion, the European stock exchanges have also collapsed, the German stock index (Dax) closed on Thursday with a minus of four percent.
Because of the attack on Ukraine, the EU, the USA, Canada and Japan had announced sanctions against Russia. Among others, Russian banks and numerous sectors of the Russian economy are affected.
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