Bombed, not beaten: Ukraine’s capital flips to survival mode

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Residents of Ukraine’s capital bombarded with empty water bottles and rushed to hotels for power and warmth on Thursday, putting the power in survival mode after the emergency. A new Russian army attacked the day before and destroyed the city and most of the country. into darkness.

In a scene hard to believe in a sophisticated city of 3 million, some Kyiv residents began to collect rainwater from sewers, while repair teams struggled to restore supplies.

Friends and family exchanged messages to find out who had electricity and water restored. Some have one and not the other. The previous day’s air strikes on Ukraine’s electricity supply left many without any.

A hotel in Kyiv that by two small miracles has become a quick comfort on Thursday.

Oleksiy Rashchupkin, a 39-year-old investment banker, woke up to find his third-floor apartment flooded but without power. His refrigerator exploded in a cloud, leaving a puddle on his floor.

So he got into a boat and crossed the Dnieper River on the left side, to a hotel he found in an open space after the previous Russian raids. It is clear that it offers hot drinks, hot food and music and Wi-Fi is available.

He said: “I came here because there is heating, coffee and electricity. “This is life.”

Mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko said that about 70% of the capital of Ukraine was still without power on Thursday morning.

As Kyiv and other cities recovered, Kherson on Thursday came under its heaviest shelling since Ukrainian forces seized the southern city two weeks ago. The blast killed four people outside a coffee shop and killed a woman near her home, witnesses said, speaking to The Associated Press.

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In Kyiv, where winter rains have been falling almost as much as the previous snows, the situation is grim rather than bleak. Winter promises to be long. But Ukrainians say that if Russian President Vladimir Putin’s intention is to undermine them, he should think again.

Alina Dubeiko, 34, said: “No one will compromise their sense and values ​​just for electricity. He also needs the comfort of another person, crowded, warm and bright. Without electricity, heat and water at home, he is determined to continue his work. Maintaining a comfortable lifestyle, Dubeiko said she takes two glasses of water in the shower, then holds her hair in a ponytail and is ready for her work day.

He said he would rather be powerless than live with the Russian invasion, which passed the nine-month mark on Thursday.

“Without fire or you? Without you,” he said, echoing President Volodymyr Zelensky’s words when Russia on Oct. 10 launched the first of what has now become a series of airstrikes on key Ukrainian infrastructure.

Western leaders condemned the bombing campaign. “Attacks against civilian infrastructure are war crimes,” French President Emmanuel Macron tweeted.

Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov admitted on Thursday that he had targeted Ukraine’s energy industry. But he said they were linked to the Ukrainian military’s command and control system and its aim was to disrupt the movement of Ukrainian troops, weapons and ammunition on the battlefield. Kyiv authorities and the wider Kyiv region reported that 7 people died and many were injured.

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Russia’s UN envoy Vassily Nebenzia said: “We are attacking Ukraine with weapons of war in an uncontrolled manner and recklessly asking Kyiv to defeat Russia.”

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov also wanted to place the blame for the normal difficulties on the Ukrainian government.

Peskov said, “The leadership of Ukraine has every opportunity to return the situation to normal, has every opportunity to resolve the situation in a way that meets the needs of the Russian side and, as a result, ends all the suffering of the civilian population.” have.” .

In Kyiv, people lined up at public stations to fill plastic bottles. In an amazing new battle for her, 31-year-old health worker Kateryna Luchkina started collecting rainwater from a water pipe, so that she could at least wash her hands at work, which no water. He filled two plastic bottles and patiently waited for the rain until they got water in their mouths. A colleague followed him, doing the same.

“We Ukrainians have a lot of money, we have to think about something. We do not lose our spirit,” said Luckina. “We are working, living in survival mode or whatever, as much as possible. We are not losing hope that everything will be fine.”

The mayor said on Telegram that power engineers are “doing their best” to restore electricity. Water maintenance teams are also thriving. In the early afternoon, Klitschko announced that water has been restored across the capital, saying that “some customers may still have a little water pressure.”

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Power, heat and water are slowly returning elsewhere. Southeast of Dnipropetrovsk in Ukraine, the governor announced that 3,000 miners who were trapped underground by fire had been rescued. Local authorities posted messages on social media updating people on the progress of repairs but also said they needed time.

Remembering the difficulties – both now and in the future, as the winter continues – the authorities are opening thousands of so-called “invincible places” – fire pits and power supply, electricity and internet. More than 3,700 were opened across the country by Thursday morning, the head of the office of the president Kyrylo Tymoshenko said.

In Kherson, a hospital without power and water is struggling with the dire consequences of increasing Russian attacks. They attacked residential and commercial buildings on Thursday, setting some on fire, blowing ash into the sky and smashing glass across the street. Paramedics help the injured.

Olena Zhura was delivering bread to her neighbors when the project destroyed half of her house and injured her husband, Victor. He was upset when the paramedics were taking him away.

He said: “I was surprised. “Then I heard (him) shouting: ‘Save me, save me.’

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Mednick reported from Kherson, Ukraine.

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Follow AP’s coverage of the war in Ukraine at: https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine

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