(EurActiv) — Ukraine and Russia have failed to agree on humanitarian convoys for the evacuation of civilians from war-affected areas for the second day, Ukraine’s Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said on Monday (18 April).
Russia invaded Ukraine on 24 February and calls its action a special military operation to demilitarise Ukraine and eradicate what it calls dangerous nationalists. The West and Kyiv accuse Russian President Vladimir Putin of unprovoked aggression.
“For security reasons, it was decided not to open humanitarian corridors today,” Vereshchuk said on the Telegram app.
Authorities in Ukraine’s Western and Southern regions of Lviv and Dnipropetrovsk reported multiple explosions on Monday, while a Reuters reporter heard a series of blasts in Kyiv, as Russia’s invasion of the country continues.
Six people were killed and eight wounded in Lviv where missiles struck military facilities and a car tire service point, regional governor Maksym Kozystkiy said.
Separately, authorities said some of the missiles hit areas close to a railway station and other railroad facilities, briefly disrupting normal traffic.
According to media outlet Suspilne, two people were wounded in the Dnipropetrovsk attacks.
In Kyiv, a Reuters reporter heard a series of blasts on the left bank of the Dnipro river. Local authorities were yet to provide any official information on their cause.
Four civilians were shot dead while trying to flee by car from the town of Kreminna in Ukraine’s eastern Luhansk region during a Russian attack, regional governor Serhiy Gaidai said in a post on messaging app Telegram.
A fourth person was seriously injured, he said. Reuters could not independently verify the information.
Ukraine is currently lobbying the West and Europe to stop importing gas from Russia, stating it is funding the Russian war machine.
While an embargo on Russian coal was announced in the fourth package of sanctions and a ban on oil is likely in the fifth, the bloc is struggling to wean itself off gas.
Populous countries such as Germany and Italy are some of the biggest consumers of Russian natural gas.
Russian gas producer Gazprom confirmed in a statement that it was continuing to supply natural gas to Europe via Ukraine on Monday in line with requests from European consumers.
Requests stood at 56.9 million cubic metres for April 18, it said, broadly unchanged from the previous day’s volumes.