Russia’s Military Operation Enters its Second Day, Zelenskyy Appeals for ‘Anti-War Coalition’

Two explosions were heard in the capital of Kyiv Friday morning as the Russian military operation in Ukraine enters its second day.

Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelenskyy says he has spoken with his Polish counterpart Andrzej Duda to seek defence assistance from Eastern European members of NATO and help in bringing Russia to the negotiating table.

“We need [an] anti-war coalition,” the Ukrainian president tweeted.

Since the start of the special operation, Russian armed forces have disabled 83 facilities of Ukraine’s ground military infrastructure, destroyed four planes and four drones, Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov has told reporters.

“Overall, as a result of strikes by the Russian armed forces, 83 ground-based objects of Ukrainian military infrastructure have been kncked out of action. Since the start of the military operation, two Su-27 and two Su-24 planes, one helicopter and four Bayraktar TB-2 drones of the Ukrainian armed forces have been shot down,” he said.

In the same context, more than 70 ground infrastructure facilities belonging to Ukraine were incapacitated by strikes carried out by Russia’s Armed Forces, Defense Ministry Spokesman said.

“As a result of the strikes conducted by Russia’s Armed Forces, 74 ground facilities of Ukraine’s military infrastructure were knocked out of action. Among them are 11 airfields belonging to the Air Force, three command points, a Ukrainian Navy base and 18 radar stations of S-300 and Buk-M1 missile systems,” Konashenkov specified.

According to him, a combat helicopter and four Bayraktar TB2 unmanned combat aerial vehicles were shot down.

He stressed that the strikes carried out by Russia’s Armed Forces are not targeting Ukrainian cities as well as social facilities in military garrisons.

When clarifying the developments unfolding, the Russian Defense Ministry reassured that Russian troops are not targeting Ukrainian cities, but are limited to surgically striking and incapacitating Ukrainian military infrastructure. There are no threats whatsoever to the civilian population.

Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said that Russians supported the recognition of the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR, LPR) and the level of their support for the military operation in Ukraine won’t wane

“We know that a solid majority of the [Russian] population supported the president’s decision to recognize the two republics, the LPR and DPR. The current developments are unfolding on the basis of the appeals from the heads of the two republics,” Peskov noted. “This is why it’s possible to assume that the level of support won’t fall below what it was,” Peskov told reporters on Thursday.

Peskov did not rule out that “some data from pollsters will come in soon.” He admitted that “the situation is very turbulent, it is a highly complicated issue.” “However, as the president explained in his address to the Russian people, it all stems from our national interests and concern for our country’s future. There is no other goal here,” the Russian presidential spokesman added.

The Kremlin press secretary also said that he was unaware if a poll had already been conducted in relation to the president’s decision on Donbass.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said in a televised address on Thursday morning that in response to a request by the heads of the Donbass republics he had made a decision to carry out a special military operation in order to protect people “who have been suffering from abuse and genocide by the Kiev regime for eight years.” The Russian leader stressed that Moscow had no plans of occupying Ukrainian territories.

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