Day 60 of Putin's war. Russia attacks Odesa, Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, captures OSCE members in Donetsk and Luhansk

24 April, 11:06 AM
Ukrainian servicemen move to the frontline in Kharkiv Oblast. (Photo:REUTERS/Jorge Silva)

Ukrainian servicemen move to the frontline in Kharkiv Oblast. (Photo:REUTERS/Jorge Silva)

Today, April 24, is the 60th day of Ukraine's defense against a full-scale Russian invasion.  

2053: Russia attacked Poltava Oblast, striking five missiles against local infrastructure objects, the Poltava governor Dmytro Lunin has reported. 

Lunin claimed the details about destruction and victims are still being clarified.  Locals have reported blasts in Kremenchuk.

1930: Russians want to force Ukrainian POWs to donate blood to the Russian invaders, wounded in Ukraine, Ukrainian  Human Rights Ombudswoman Liudmyla Denisova has said in a Facebook post.

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"This practice of forced blood donation was widespread in Nazi concentration camps," Denisova wrote.  "The surviving Buchenwald prisoners recalled Nazis were taking blood from them for Wehrmacht soldiers, starving them and forcing them to work."

Russia grossly violates Article 26 of the Geneva Convention relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War, the ombudswoman said. She has also filed a claim to the UN Human Rights Commission asking to document the facts of pressure.

Earlier it was reported that Russian occupiers keep Ukrainian prisoners of war in an ordinary prison in Rostov Oblast. This is also a violation of the Geneva Convention.

1644: West Virginia to send military armored personnel carriers to Ukraine, AP has reported citing Gov. Jim Justice. 

West Virginia will supply an undisclosed number of M113 armored personnel carriers to Ukraine following a request from the US Department of Defense.

1621: More than 80 percent of Ukrainian soldiers, wounded in battles, return to the war front, Ukraine's deputy defense minister Hanna Maliar said during a TV marathon on April 24.

"This is a great victory of Ukrainian military medics," Maliar added.

1527: "The fight for Mariupol is not over. This is a Ukrainian city and it will stay that way forever," Andriy Yermak, the head of the President's Office of Ukraine has said on television channel TF1 .

According to him, Russia's claims that it has full control over the city are false. Yes, they control a significant part of the city, but Ukrainians are still fighting there, he said.

1305: Russian occupiers killed two children on Easter morning in Donetsk Oblast, Donetsk governor Pavlo Kyrylenko has reported.

According to Kyrylenko, Russian shelling destroyed a house in the Ocheretianska territorial community in the Pokrovsky district of Donetsk Oblast. Two girls, aged 14 and 5, died under the rubble.

It's been two months since Russian President Vladimir Putin announced a "special operation" in Ukraine - in fact a mask for a full-scale invasion of the country. Since Feb. 24, Kremlin propaganda has been changing the goals of the Russian invaders in Ukraine: from denazification and demilitarization, to helping the Donbas. At the moment, the Russians claim they are fighting NATO in Ukraine. 

In two months of full-scale invasion, the Kremlin's invading forces occupied several settlements in Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Kharkiv, Luhansk, and Donetsk Oblast. They have almost destroyed Mariupol, killing more than 20,000 of its citizens and forcibly deporting thousands of others to Russia.

In Kyiv and Chernihiv Oblast the Russians suffered heavy losses and retreated back to Belarus.  After they left, Ukrainians found that more than 1,000 civilians had been killed, raped, and tortured in the previously occupied territories.

Ukraine keeps fighting. "Ukrainians will never surrender," President Volodymyr Zelensky said during his press conference in a Kyiv metro station late on April 23.

Yesterday the Russians killed at least eight people in Odesa and wounded 18 in an attack with cruise missiles.

"Seven missiles! We hit two. A three-month-old child killed by those dirty bastards," Zelensky said.

An hour after his words, Russians fired two more missiles in the direction of Odesa's Yuzhnyi port. Ukrainian air defense systems shot them down.

Overnight, the Russians attacked railway infrastructure in Pavlohrad district in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast, killing a 48-year-old man.

Ukraine managed to deliver 20 tons of humanitarian aid to the occupied Enerhodar, a city in Zaporizhzhia Oblast, where the Russians control the largest nuclear power plant in Europe.

In Kherson Oblast, Ukrainian forces liberated eight villages, Ukraine's Air Force Command South has reported.

In Donetsk and Luhansk, Russian forces have captured several members of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission. 

"The OSCE is extremely concerned that a number of SMM national mission members have been deprived of their liberty in Donetsk and Luhansk. The OSCE is using all available channels to facilitate the release of its staff,"  the OSCE told Reuters

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