Russia has launched an all-out invasion of Ukraine by land, air and sea, the biggest attack by one state against another in Europe since World War II and confirmation of the worst fears of the West.
The attacks began on Thursday after Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a televised address that he had approved a “special military operation”. The move came after Moscow earlier recognised rebel-held territories in Luhansk and Donetsk and said they had asked for its “help”.
Russian missiles rained down on Ukrainian cities. Ukraine reported columns of troops pouring across its borders into the eastern Chernihiv, Kharkiv and Luhansk regions, and landing by sea at the cities of Odesa and Mariupol in the south.
Russian troops attacked Ukraine from Belarus, as well as from Russia with Belarusian support. An attack was also being launched from the annexed Crimean Peninsula, Ukraine’s border guard service said.
Al Jazeera’s Andrew Simmons in Kyiv, Ukraine.