| Last updated
Kyiv has reportedly been rocked by explosions once again as peace talks between Ukraine and Russia came to a close on the Belarusian border.
Today marks the fifth day of Russian President Vladimir Putin's 'special military operation', which has already seen thousands of Russian troops killed according to Ukrainian reports, hundreds of civilian casualties and at least 500,000 people making a desperate bid to flee the country.
'Dozens' were said to have been killed in Kharkiv missile strikes this morning, and while fighting has been raging on the outskirts of the capital, the Russian Armed Forces are yet to take control of Kyiv, with a three-and-a-half mile convoy still en route around 20km outside the city.
Good evening from Kyiv.— Nick Stylianou (@nmsonline) February 28, 2022
Three huge explosions rock the city a few miles from where we are.
This is what @DeanMassey25 captured as we prepared to go live @SkyNews with @markaustintv #Ukraine pic.twitter.com/JMKVOB6kZ8
The outcome of the peace talks haven't been made public at the time of writing, but Vladimir Medinsky, the Russian delegation head, said both sides have 'agreed to keep the negotiations going', according to Al Jazeera.
Earlier expectations for the talks weren't high, particularly with Belarus accused of allowing Russia to launch missile strikes within its own borders as they commenced. Prior to the talks, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko promised to keep all planes, helicopters and missiles stationed in his country on the ground during the Ukrainian delegation's travel to and from the talks, as well as during the negotiations.
⚡️Several loud blasts heard in Kyiv.— The Kyiv Independent (@KyivIndependent) February 28, 2022
Sirens blare out, residents need to head to the nearest shelter.
Shortly after news emerged of the talks concluding for the moment, explosions have been recorded in Kyiv. Reporting for Sky News, Deborah Haynes said, 'The windows rattled with those explosions we heard a bit ago.'
'The warning has always been that if they couldn't have their success in their initial wave then they would up the tempo in terms of the level of violence, which seems to be what we are seeing and hearing,' she added.
Other reports have corroborated this, including a social media post from The Kyiv Independent. 'Several loud blasts heard in Kyiv. Sirens blare out, residents need to head to the nearest shelter,' the outlet tweeted.
Just now on the edge of Kyiv I saw series of surface-to-air missiles fired and heard explosions. Sky lit up. At least one plane heard overhead. Fighting ongoing around Kyiv.— Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) February 28, 2022
The blasts also come after Zelenskyy officially applied for European Union membership amid his pleas for support from the bloc. In an earlier video address, he said, 'We ask the European Union for Ukraine’s immediate accession under a new special procedure. Our goal is to be with all Europeans and, most importantly, to be equal. I’m sure that’s fair. I am sure we deserve it.'
President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen commended the peace talks, but warned, 'The trust in President Putin is completely broken and eroded.'
If you would like to donate to the Red Cross Emergency Appeal, which will help provide food, medicines and basic medical supplies, shelter and water to those in Ukraine, click here for more information
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read