- EU divided over Russian energy blackmail
- Ukrainian commander makes desperate evacuation
- Gazprombank executive flees Russia to fight with Ukrainian
- ‘Victory’ for Ukraine means denying Russia any territorial gains
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The southern Ukrainian city of Kherson was rocked by a series of explosions on Wednesday night as missiles and rockets were fired into the city by Ukrainian forces, Russian media reported.
Ukraine fired three rockets at the centre of the city but Russian occupying forces shot down two of them, RIA news agency cited a security source as saying.
A series of explosions reportedly boomed near the television tower and at least temporarily knocked Russian channels off the air.
Ukrayinska Pravda, an online newspaper, said the strikes set off a fire and knocked Russian television channels off the air.
RIA Novosti said the broadcast later resumed. It said Russian channels began broadcasting from Kherson last week.
Kherson has been occupied by Russian forces since early in the war.
On Wednesday Russian forces used tear gas and stun grenades to disperse a pro-Ukraine rally in the occupied city, Ukraine’s Prosecutor General said, as Moscow tightened its grip over the southern region.
Local authorities say Russia appointed its own mayor of Kherson on Tuesday after its troops took over the administration headquarters in the regional capital, which was the first big urban centre to be seized after the 24 invasion on February 24.
Follow the latest updates below.
Most in US fear Ukraine war misinformation, according to poll
A majority of US adults say misinformation around Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is a major problem, and they largely fault the Russian government for spreading those falsehoods.
A new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research shows 61 per cent of Americans say the spread of misinformation about the war is a major problem, with only 7 per cent saying it’s not a problem.
Older adults were more likely to identify the wartime misinformation as an issue, with 44 per cent of those under 30 calling it a problem, compared with 65 per cent of those 30 and older.
Real disposable incomes in Russia drop 27.8 per cent
Real disposable incomes in Russia dropped 27.8 per cent in the first quarter of 2022, the official statistics service said in an estimate, pointing to a dramatic slide in purchasing power since the Ukraine conflict began.
Russia’s economy has been hit hard by unprecedented Western sanctions over its invasion of Ukraine.
Last week, the central bank said it will consider cutting its key interest rate further at upcoming board meetings amid the economic challenges.
Global pledges of justice for Ukraine war crime victims
Several countries and organisations, including the UN, pledged on Wednesday to bring to justice any perpetrators of war crimes committed during Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
They were urged on by the Lebanese-British barrister Amal Clooney, who said she feared “politicians calling for justice but not delivering it.”
“My fear is that you will get busy and distracted and that each day there’ll be a little bit less coverage of the war and people will become a little bit more numb to it,” Clooney told an informal meeting of the Security Council.
“And that Ukraine will end up alone in pursuing the perpetrators of these atrocities. We cannot let that happen,” said the lawyer, who runs the Clooney Foundation for Justice with her husband, actor George Clooney.
US has sent more than half of 90 howitzers to Ukraine
Ukraine has more than half of the 90 howitzers pledged to them by the US to help defend the east of the country, chief Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said on Wednesday.
The weapons are part of an $800m military aid package to Ukraine announced by President Joe Biden last week, which includes heavy artillery weapons, dozens of howitzers and tactical drones.
Mr Kirby said: “We finished up earlier this week the first tranche of more than 50 trainers that are going to go in and train their teammates,” Kirby said. “We’re working on a second tranche of … more than 50 that [are] going to go through training in the same location outside Ukraine.”
The United States has already supplied more than half of the promised ninety 155 mm howitzers to #Ukraine. The weapons have arrived in the country, Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said.
He also said that initial phase of training for 50 Ukrainian soldiers was completed this week. pic.twitter.com/DPkZmhp2KZ
— NEXTA (@nexta_tv) April 27, 2022
Inflation shock, rate rise risk jolt Australia PM’s election campaign
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Thursday blamed the war in Ukraine and COVID-related supply chain disruptions for a record rise in living costs which could jeopardise his chances of winning a national election to be held within weeks.
Australian consumer prices surged at the fastest annual pace in two decades last quarter, data out on Wednesday showed, as petrol, home-building and food costs rose, fueling speculation interest rates could rise from record lows as soon as next week.
“We are still feeling the effects of the rather extraordinary economic times that we are living in,” Morrison said during a media briefing, adding the COVID-19 lockdown in China had strained supply chains along with the Ukraine conflict.
Today’s top stories
Russian forces used tear gas and stun grenades to disperse a pro-Ukraine rally in the occupied city of Kherson on Wednesday, Ukraine’s Prosecutor General said, as Moscow tightened its grip over the southern region
Western governments want to deny Russia any territorial gains from its invasion of Ukraine, officials have said in the clearest indication yet of the scale of the defeat they want to impose on Moscow
A commander of Ukrainian troops making a last stand in Mariupol said he has 600 injured and no medicine to treat them
A senior Gazprombank executive has vowed revenge against Russia after fleeing the country to join Ukraine’s territorial defence forces
The EU was on Wednesday split over Russian “blackmail” to pay for gas in roubles after Moscow’s state-controlled energy giant halted deliveries to two European countries
An independent research group says Germany was the biggest buyer of Russian energy during the first two months since the start of the war in Ukraine