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tv   New Day With John Berman and Brianna Keilar  CNN  February 24, 2022 2:59am-4:00am PST

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♪ this is cnn breaking news. all right. good morning to our viewers in the united states and all around the world. it is thursday, february 24th. i'm john berman with brianna keilar. this is cnn's special live coverage of the news that
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vladimir putin has launched a multipronged large scale military attack against ukraine. this is an attack across the entire nation of ukraine. you can see there explosions reported in at least 16 different locations. all over. you can see the range of cities, kyiv, odessa, kharkiv, including far from the border. we have brand-new images that show damage done by a bombing operation in the kyiv region. they have grabbed their belongings and are fleeing west, leaving the capital. cnn has obtained this exclusive video showing russian military vehicles entering the country from the north from belarus. president putin going on state tv to announce this military operation to do what he calls protect the donbas region. the goal, he claimed, was the
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demille demille tearization of ukraine. ukrainians have been told to stay in their homes. we saw them kneeling and praying on the streets of kharkiv. president zelenskyy pleading for peace in a nationally twiced attack moments ago. >> putin began war against ukraine, against the entire democratic world. he wants to destroy my country, our country. everything we have been building, everything we are living for. we know the strength of the armed forces of ukraine. you are in dtkdom inable. you are ukrainians. >> you're watching here video of matthew chance. he was reporting live from kyiv when all of this began. you can see he had to rush there
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to protect himself. like millions and millions in this nation are now doing. these were missile strikes reported near the capital city. the u.s. embassy telling all americans to shelter in place. after lying for weeks, if not years about his intentions, putin declared war as a u.n. security council meeting was taking place in the middle of it for the purpose of averting the war. we will hear from the nato secretary-general in a moment. in a phone call with ukraine's president, president biden promised russia will be held accountable for what he called an unprovoked and unjustified aing ta. at noon, president biden will deliver remarks to the nation that the whole world will be listening to. we have cnn reporters covering this story from every angle, every location from moscow to kyiv. >> to sam kiley first in kharkiv, very close to the russian border, sam, where i know you did hear explosions and saw blasts lighting up the sky.
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give us a accepts of what you are seeing and hearing right now. >> reporter: well, just before we came on air, there were very large explosions and very, very loud indeed just to my north. we don't know whether it's incoming or outgoing. because one of the key issues is how is the ukrainian military performing? yes, they are being bombarded from the air, and coming under ballistic missile attacks, and yes, they are attack across the country. but they also have some of their own capability which they would have known they were going to get attacked in this way. it's a standard way that any country would conduct the prelude to a land invasion, take out key installations. there are a lot of them around this city, including the airport, military airport here which is also we know being
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attacked at the ministry of defense is claiming. we have no verification on this. four russian tanks have been knocked out on the ring road that surrounds kharkiv, a city of at least 1.5 million people, john and brianna. they are also further claiming out to where we were yesterday on the border with the breakaway republics recognized as independent states just a few days ago, kramatorsk, they have downed several russian air frames, both aircraft and helicopters. again, we don't have any hard evidence for any of that. but those two blasters they're called are being seized or at least the attempt is being made to seize them from ukrainian government forces as part of the significant push. that is where there does appear to be a lot of ground fighting. elsewhere, i just heard another
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explosion. we're hearing the sounds of artillery exchanges, which have hit elements within the civilian population here towards the outskirts. actually quite close to the ring road, an apartment building was hit with some kind of missile or artillery piece. but elsewhere in the city, things have been so far relatively calm. nervous, obviously, but fairly calm. . >> sam, i want to give people a sense of where you are right now. you are in kharkiv right here. you mentioned how close you are to the russian border. yesterday we saw satellite imagery from here, belgorod, the russians stationed. now you are hearing artillery into kharkiv. are you getting any direct reports of russian ground forces? you mentioned tanks around the ring road. what exactly are you hearing? >> reporter: those -- we've got only the ukrainian ministry of
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defense' word for that. and we have social media mosts. we are working to identify the veracity of those claims of the four russian takes on the ring road around kharkiv. if that were the case, it would be significant. it might also give some indication beyond what vladimir putin has said in the kremlin, which is he is claiming he's only coming in to protect those provinces in the east, albeit to expand them into government-held territory rather than try to occupy. he insisted the russian ministry of defense is also insisting civilian targets are not going to be attacked by the russians. they have no interest in attacking them anywhere in ukraine. they are insisting this is purely a military operation to prevent what they are calling the nazi regime from
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counterattacks. but that is a real key element in what they are saying here. the ground forces that cnn has seen, cnn has seen evidence in the belarusian territory north of the capital kyiv going south. there is some evidence they have been crossing here. are these then, the ground elements, going to be used for what vladimir putin signaled will be kind of program, purge against the leadership here? we have had western intelligence services, both british and american talk, about lists of politicians that need to be killed and jailed, potential resistance leaders. we know military headquarters in kyiv has been attacked. the ukrainians would have factored all that into their military planning. what we may have been hearing is not shelling coming in necessarily from belorod but
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quite possibly outgoing harassment from the ukrainians. if the russians get blocked, bogged down and start taking casualties, the whole political dynamic could shift. that might be part of the ukrainian game plan. . >> sam, stand by if you will for a second. i believe we have general mark hertling on the line with us. general, just to give us a sense what sam was just reporting, this is where he is in kharkiv. this is very close to the russian border. belgorod is on the russian side. sam is suggesting what he is hearing might be outgoing artillery? what is the sense of what we're getting on the ground there? >> i think that is significant. the ukrainian army has been told by their president to hold fire, to not conduct any provocations in the run-up to this for fear
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it would factor in the russian's equations to attack. that's over now. they're at word. you will see really good actions by ukraine's army not just until using stinger missiles that have been provided for them or javelin missiles, but they have a good artillery set. the artillery school for the old ussr used to be in kharkiv. they also have -- they have been provided counterfire radar. what i mean by that is they can detect income coming rounds with a radar system and then immediately fireback on that location where the round came from. if it's within range, they can shoot back very quickly. we have seen so far somewhat of an untrained russian army. they're not doing things as well as a trained army can be. when you shoot an artillery piece, no matter where you are shooting from, you shoot and get
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the heck out of there because you know there's incoming back toward you. the incoming army may be doing a good job of counterfire. i hope that's the case and that is what sam may be seeing. . >> general, stand by. sam, you as well. stand by. stay safe. keep us posted as you see and hear more things. >> let's go now to the state department with cnn's kylie atwood. what is the latest from state officials, kylie? >> reporter: we are learning there are no more u.s. diplomats on the ground in ukraine. you'll remember there were only a small number of diplomats that remained in the country at all aftermost of them have been ordered to leave once the u.s. embassy in kyiv had closed. they have been subtling back, spending their nights in poland. last night was the last night they spent in poland. they will not be going back to
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ukraine, according to an official familiar with the situation. this comes of course as this russian assault has begun on ukraine. we are watching for president biden's remarks that will come sometime midday. late last night, secretary of defense lloyd austin, secretary of state tony blinken spoke with the nato secretary-general. they spoke about condemning, together, what they called this unjustified, premeditated attack on ukraine. they also talked about what the allied response is going to look like here. in a way, to the ways they can defend nato allied territory. that's something for us to watch today. another thing for us to watch today is what the u.s. response is going to look like. because last night president biden spoke about this attack on ukraine and said russia will be held accountable. we have heard that time and time again from the biden administration. probably more sanctions coming. we should also note, brianna,
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just how alarming it was to watch that united nation's emergency council meeting last night that was called by the ukrainians. as all of these world leaders came out, the u.n. secretary-general saying from the bottom of his heart, he was deploring the russians not to go forth with this. greenfield calling for the russians to pull back from the brink before it was too late. as that meeting was convening, the russians went forward with this invasion. >> it was really a sight to behold. the disdain it showed for the counsel. thank you so much for that report from the state department. steve hall, cnn national security analyst and former cia chief of russia operations. steve, what i want to give people a sense of here is just the scope of this aerial assault now. it is all over ukraine. we can't keep up with all the explosions here.
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these are the sites where we have cnn reporters and local reports. there are reports all the way over here, south of lviv. that is so far from this separatist region, which is where vladimir putin was claiming he was concerned about. what do you make of the scale of this? >> that delta between what he said he is interested in in the donbas region and what you are seeing throughout the country is really interesting. i'm sure some of it military will say it is softening up, preparing the battle space because it's possible, for example, that ukrainian forces could have stuff here that could endanger russian forces as they're moving in. equally important as to what's going on on the ground here is what putin has said. he said he's going in ostensibly to protect russian citizens. he gave them passports giving
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t them. but he said denazi fiction of the country. they live up here in kyiv. when he said he is going to de denavyfy, he's going to go after other parts of the country where he sees, quote, unquote nazis and do whatever he wants in the entire territory of ukraine. president zelenskyy noted to it last night. he's jewish. he is talking about a denazi fiction of a country of someone who is jewish. you are talking about getting to the capital. we have had russian troops across the belarusian border here. we have had reports down here in crimea of russian troops moving north. >> yeah. >> how closely are you watching that we will see at some point more ground forces in.
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>> late last night on the border with belarus is really interesting. we expected a lot of this. because there's already -- when rush city ate up crimea a number of years back, we expected it here. when you have folks here, my understanding is it was not clear whether it was russian troop movements or russian and belarusian. in that case, you have two countries at war with ukraine. that's an even more complicating situation. >> i'm not sure if it matters if they are had he using his space to camp out there. steve, don't go far. back with you in just a second. >> wanted to have david sanger weigh in there. we heard steve talking about some of the lies this invasion is based on, that putin is
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denazi feig ukraine. >> they have warned us for a the longest time that they would create a pretext for going in. and they did some of that. but vladimir putin decided he would do his own pretext. the first was this denazi fiction, as if a troubled democracy, corrupt one, was somewhat linked to some form of nazi ideology or exterminating groups of its own people. the first lie. the second one, which occupied a third of putin's speech on monday, that ukraine was trying to build nuclear weapons and invite the united states to put nuclear weapons on its territory. they gave up the soviet force
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left on its ground in 1994 in return for an agreement with russia, the united states they would ensure the country's territorial and border integrity and security. they were saying, what's going on here? the russians were making up -- or putin was making up this story that they were making nuclear weapons. they don't have the capability of doing this. and the third fantasy was the united states was ready to move nuclear weapons into ukraine. and within easy each of moscow. well, we can reach moscow from nebraska. so it's not as if that would have made that big a difference. but there was no such plan. ukraine was not a nato country, as we've been discussing. the united states doesn't put nuclear weapons in non-nato countries. all of these became part of the pretext to do what you just heard, to go far beyond the donbas and try to take the entire country.
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>> these are aggressive lies, argues we see this aggression action of russian military forces moving into ukraine. . >> unprovoked attack based on a series of lies. our live special coverage of this historic perilous moment continues right after the break. ♪ i've been everywhere, man. ♪ ♪ i've been everywhere, man. ♪ ♪ crorossed the desert's bare, man. ♪ ♪ i'v've breathed the mountain air, man. ♪ ♪ of travel i've had my share, man. ♪ ♪ i've e been everywhere. ♪ ♪ i i've been to: pittsburgh, parkersburg, ♪ ♪ gravelbourg, colorado, ♪ ♪ ellensburg, cedar city, dodge city, what a pity. ♪ ♪ i've been everywhere, man. ♪ ♪ i've been everywhere, man. ♪ ♪ i've been everywhere. ♪ stuff. we love stuff. and there's some really great stuff out there. but i doubt that any of us will look back on our lives and think, "i wish i'd bought an even thinner , found a lighr light beer, or had aeven smarter smartphone."
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so we have breaking news. russia attacking ukraine as we speak. we're seeing images like this. people gathering and praying on the streets of ukraine. joining me now on the phone is father andre zelenskyy of the greek catholic church in ukraine, deputy head of the military chaplains of ukraine. father, i understand you're inside a bomb shelter right now. what can you tell us? >> yes. hello, everybody. and this is completely a preliminary theme to think something like this happening in
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the 21st century in downtown. i'm in the bomb shelter downtown kyiv. this is unacceptable. this teaches us a lot. it calls us that lives cause lies. this is one of the greatest lies i've ever heard from this nation. so this is completely unbelievable what we have been witnessing these hours. i was among one of the first chaplains in 2014 in the eastern of the country. in one of the largest countries of europe has been attacked by missiles, of ideation. there are a lot of planes in the sky of kyiv, bombing downtown, bombing one of the biggest cities of eastern europe. >> can you tell us about what it's like where you are. i imagine there are many ukrainians in a similar
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situation. >> yes. right now a few developments to the situation. there were those who were trying to leave the city in the morning. that's why there were huge, huge traffic jams. and then there were those who stayed in the city and are praying right now. there are people around us praying and listening to the artillery shelling, to the sounds of artillery and the sounds of bombs. as i said, it's something that is unbelievable, completely. a pock lip tal. we are thinking what to do and how to be in the nearest days. >> and, father, we do hope that you stay safe. i want you to know we have seen pictures of people praying on the streets of ukraine. that is something going on outside the bomb shelter where
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you are. father zelenskyy, thank you. stay safe. >> thank you. thank you. i want to bring in cnn's barbara starr at the pentagon. we are talking about ukraine on the map of europe, which people know is right there. but you have news coming from up here, the baltic states. what have you learned? >> reporter: well, good morning, john. a short time ago, the first u.s. soldiers arrived in latvia in the baltics. this is something the pentagon announced it was going to do. soldiers from the very elite, 173rd brigade from italy, moving into the balance particulars as part of the u.s. military effort to reassure and provide deterrence if needed for nato allies on that eastern flank that are so nervous that russia may come after them yet. there is a good deal of anxiety. now, here at the pentagon, and i
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suspect intelligence and military services across europe, briefings continued for top leaders throughout the night as they sift through the intelligence and try and determine exactly what is going on. they do see the tv pictures. they see the social media. but this is an intelligence challenge now to get the very precise details they need. what we have learned is they did understand it was all about to unfold last night because russian radio chatter went silent. typically we're told they monitor a lot of routine radio chatter. it went silent at some point. it became very clear this was about to unfold. so now here today at the pentagon, the top leaders continuing to get briefed, continuing to try and assess russian intentions, capabilities, motivations. likely that the defense secretary and chairman of the joint chiefs will go to the white house later this morning. so what do they think the
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russians are doing? the russian military playbook here, as you look at that map, john, would be to try and fracture the ukraine military and ukraine government. go in with cyber attacks, followed up by all of these weapons attacks that you're seeing. if they can fracture the military, the command and control and essentially make it impossible for them to communicate amongst themselves across the country, not be able to launch a coordinated counterattack, that is something the russians want to see. that is something the russians want to accomplish. so all of this here at the pentagon and certainly around the world being watched minute by minute, john. . >> that's why you are seeing reports of explosions from all over the country, from the east all the way to the best. barbara starr at the pentagon, please stand by for us. we'll come back to you in a bit. >> reporter: thank you.
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admiral james vogel who commanded all nato forces in europe before retiring. the navy league of the united states. distinguished fellow at the center for european policy analysis. i just want to get your general takeaways on the situation but also, you know, speaking to the naval power we are seeing from the south. these strikes from likely maritime positions in odessa. what can you tell us? . >> right, brianna. this is a very tragic situation for a sovereign country that has done nothing to deserve this kind of onslaught from the russians. i think what we have seen overnight is a lot of reportings, it's good to have your people in the field. but clearly the russians started with a cyber attack. that's been going on for over a week. they are interested in frankly i think they have taken a play from our playbook. i was involved in the libby operations. cyber, followed by strikes on
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airfields. cyber, followed by strikes on military facilities to try to decapitate the leadership or separate the orders that are coming from kyiv out into the field. what we have seen so far is it looks like the ukrainian military is fighting back. general hertling talked earlier about counterbattery fire. it's unfortunate, they will want superiority before troops go in. some have entered donbas. they have to have close airport support. to do that, they have to have total superiority of the air, no-fly zone. there was russian aircraft overhead. so they are moving in that direction. they want to take out integrated air and missile defenses. ukrainians don't have a lot of that. this is not like israel with iron dome that can knock down missiles. they don't have patriot. unfortunately, we're not allowed to help with patriot missiles.
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they have manned pads, manned portable air defense systems. stinger missile. it worked well in afghanistan. we will see how long that inventory will last as they fight back. i think they will fight bravely. the ukrainians are in their homeland, defending their homes, wives, sons, parents. there is an overwhelming amount of fire coming in. >> reports of sam kiley up here that he believed there was some outgoing artillery from the ukrainians into russia over the border. how much damage could the ukrainians do? >> well, you know, as general hertling told you, kharkiv was the head of artillery training in the former warsaw pact soviet union. if the strikes are precision, they can do some damage to russian forces. keep in mind they have the
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javelin anti-tank missiles, open reporting is there's one missile for every russian tank coming in. they're very effective, shoulder fired, and very accurate. so they're going to bloody the nose of the russians before the russians get too far towards the capital or towards the river. and i think they're going to fight for their homeland and use the tools they have. but they just to the floor enough to be able to defeat this overwhelming force >> it seems like the defense secretary lloyd austin was right. he said it was highly likely we would see russian tanks rolling into kyiv. i guess the question is when and what is that going to look like? what do you think? . >> i think this is going to unfold quickly over the course of the next week. i'm certain there will be tremendous resistance on the part of the ukrainians. but particularly in donbas where the trenches are, they're going to have a tough night on their hands. then they will start moving in.
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how fast they move is the resistance of the ukrainian people. you mentioned the attacks in the south in odessa. the russians have over 30 ships in the black sea. they have total control of the sea. probably 75 ships total. they came down from the caspian sea. they have an effective caliber cruise missile like our tomahawk. it's precision strike. the one play they haven't taken from the american play book is collateral damage. i think there will be unfortunately a lot of casualties and potentially civilian casualties to both people and infrastructure in ukraine. . >> i'm glad you're saying that. this is just the beginning. i think we will be seeing very tough pictures coming in. admiral james foggo, thank you
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very much. . >> brianna, thank you very much. john, new york, thank you very much for letting me be here. the first forces in latvia taking position in the baltic as a large-scale attack is now under way across ukraine by russian forces. we're going to have more on these breaking developments here ahead. are you sweating? didn't you use old spice dry spray? of course, i did! don't lie to me! d spice has long lasting sweat protection! ok, i lied. noooooooo! aah! i'm ok! it's still the eat fresh refresh™ and subway's refreshing everything like the new honey mustard rotisserie-style chicken. it's sweet, it's tangy, it's tender, it never misses. you could say it's the steph curry of footlongs. you could, but i'm not gonna. subway keeps refreshing and refreshing and re...
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breaking news this morning. the russian attack, a wide-scale attack on ukraine. we're getting reports of explosions all across the country. new reports we can't even keep up with on our map, all the way to south lviv. mariupol is not too far from that separatist region, our alex marquardt is there.
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give us a sense of what you are seeing or hearing this morning. >> reporter: john, where we are now, 15 miles from one of the two separatist enclaves president putin recognized as independent. we have been away for a few days. we got back this morning. we have come back to a much more tense city. the first thing we want to show you are the lines. it has gathered outside a pharmacy. you can see people going in one at a time. a long line at an atm. all along this street. atms all along the street. you have these long lines. people trying to get money out. we've been told by various people that they have had to go to different atms all across the city to try to find cash. a lot of people are confused. others say they want to leave. they're not sure if they can leave. we drove in this morning, what struck me was just the steady
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stream of people flowing out of mariupol. this is a city around half a million people. over two weeks of driving around ukraine, not seeing much of a military presence. that has changed today. the biggest number of ukrainian military vehicles we have seen thus far. but the pros imity, as we were saying, to the separatist areas, makes this a very important place to watch. because it is smack in the middle between crimea and those areas where putin says he's carrying out what he calls a special operation. this is a part of ukraine that he would like to control. when we recognized those breakaway territories for the past eight years, it isn't just
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the land where they are but where we are standing here in mariupol, on the sea and russia has ships. we could see russian forces here in the coming days. we could see really a tough time for this city in the next few hours and days, john. . >> alex marquardt. you get a sense of where alex is. it's right here. we are talking about the totality. our first reports of a new group of u.s. forces arriving up here in latvia, in the baltic states. what's the significance of this repositioning now of u.s. forces? our special live coverage continues right after this. ev's doing on their phones? they're banking, with bank of america. the groom's parents? they just found ouout they can redeem rewards for a sesecond honeymoon. romance is in the air.r. like these two.
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breaking news, russia launched a large scale aerial site on ukraine, 16 sites across the entire nation of ukraine. joining me is russian opposition politician and author of "it's not just the west that opposes the war on ukraine, a lot of russians do too". vla vladimir, thank you for being with us this morning. the leader of your nation issued a largescale attack in a democratic nation. >> he is not the leader of my nation. he is a dictator. we have been two decades without a fair election. this is not russia's war. this is not our war.
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this is another venture by the blood thirsty dictator named vladimir putin. so many people here in moscow, so many of our friends and colleagues share the themes of shock, indignation, shame, everything that surrounds what could become the largest land war some europe. this is mind boggling we are even speaking about this. this is by the putin administration. . >> how are they going to show their opposition, vladimir? you are telling us there is large opposition to it. what's going to happen? >> well, we had several arrests here in moscow. protesters tried to demonstrate against this war. we had a complete ban of any kind of public demonstrations
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here based on the hypocritical ban on covid which we have had for two years. if you are an opposition protester, one person standing with a protester, you get arrested and taken to a police station. there is a nationwide public petition organized by russia's last real remaining opposition party. tens of thousands of russians have signed this petition and continue to sign it. more intense in the last few hours, we have seen some of russia's leading cultural powers, writers, musicians, sports people, journalists, local municipal elected lawmakers across the country adding their name against this illegitimate and senseless war launched by vladimir putin.
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this is yet another crime against humanity conducted by the putin dick traeurtship. for years and year we in opposition showed the western apiecers who tried to look putin in the eye, we tried to warn how this will end. why is it every generation? >> vladimir i'm quite certain your message will not be heard in russia because censorship and what not. please stay safe. >> thank you very much. olga is a freelance journalist in ukraine and a non-resident fellow for the center of european policy analysis. olga, just talk to us a little bit about what ukrainians are feeling, what they're telling you. >> well, you can imagine people waking up to the sound of
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explosions what can they feel. of course they feel fear. they feel determination to resist. ukraine has been attacked without any reason. ukraine did nothing to be facing this invasion. it started an invasion of a sovereign, independent country. people are trying to adjust to this situation that is very fluid. we are seeing every few minutes about russian troops trying to break into ukraine's territory. in recent days, they are coming towards kyiv. russian tanks have broken through the ukrainian border in the kyiv region and are moving towards kyiv. so they're all in exit of kyiv, trying to leave to the city and move to the western part of the country. although it is unclear whether it would be safe in other regions because russia has been launching this over all
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territory. there are dozens killed civilians and ukrainian servicemen and very first official figures. and we will see them growing in the next couple of hours. people are trying to stock up on food at the supermarkets, for water also, the gas stations, the atms to withdraw cash. so it's a very chaotic situation. >> olga, ukrainians have an effective history of resisting russian rule. how significant is the resistance? how are ukrainians going to respond here? >> well, ukrainians are going to resist. there is no doubt about that. and ukraine's president zelenskyy in his address a couple of hours ago he told all ukrainians who are able and willing to join the resistance to do so. he said the state will provide you with weapons. just join the resistance and we
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will give you everything necessary to defend our land. so there will be resist answer, thr -- resistance. that's for sure. several aircraft have been destroyed by russian forces, and tanks that have been destroyed. ukrainian army is waging heavy battles now on different fronts. of course we would need support from the western in that. ukraine shouldn't be left alone. ukrainians shouldn't be left alone with russia. russia is a threat not to ukraine but a threat to european global security and peace. >> yeah. it's pretty clear resistance will be getting backup from western countries including the u.s. olga tokariuk, thank you for your coverage from ukraine. russia has begun overnight to attack. cnn teams on the ground hearing new explosions. my woke-up-likes migraine medicine.
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all right. the breaking news overnight, a large-scale aerial assault on ukraine launched by russia. you can see here on the map, at least 16 different locations targeted witnessed by our own cnn teams or locals telling us they are hearing and seeing
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things. joining me now from kyiv, the capital, is chief foreign affairs correspondent for "the wall street journal". thank you so much for being with us. you're on the streets right now. give us the significance of what you are seeing and hearing. >> reporter: well, the missile strikes and air strikes began at 5:00 a.m. this morning. they were followed quickly by all borders from belarus, crimea in the south, russia and recently airborne landings on the outskirts of kyiv. so we are seeing a full-fledged invasion of ukraine by russia. >> give me the historical significance of this moment to see the post world war ii order truly unupp ended before your v
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eyes this morning? >> reporter: what we are seeing now is russia invading a separate sovereign country, a conquest we haven't seen since the 1930s really. >> what do you think the ukrainians are going to do about it. how able are they to push back? . >> well, i think it's going to be a challenge for the ukrainian armed forces to resist just because russia's air superiority. ukraine has not been provided air defenses. it was asking western partners to sell to them. so russia has an overwhelming advantage. however, one thing is to take, another thing to hold. there will be resistance, insurgency later on. this will not end with a quick
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conquest. >> we have seen pictures in kyiv of long lines of traffic, people trying to flee to the western part of the country. what's the mood like there on the streets? . >> well, the streets are empty. i can smell now this sort of smoke of burning documents, ash burning from nearby government offices. people on the streets joining up with the units because we called up the reservists. people are looking for food, getting ash from atms. people are stunned something like this would really happen. they didn't believe it until the very end. >> unprovoked attack on a neighboring nation. yaroslav, thank you for being with us. please stay safe. and "new day" continues right now. this is cnn breaking news.
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good morning to viewers here in the united states and around the world. it is thursday, freebruary 24th. this is cnn's special live coverage of breaking news. ukraine under siege from all sides. russian president vladimir putin unleashing a multi-pronged large-scale military invasion. no city is safe. explosions reported in at least 16 locations in ukraine all over from kyiv, to mariupol, odessa in the south, all the way pest to lviv. we have brand-new images showing damage done by a bombing operation near kyiv. some of kyiv's 3 million citizens, grabbing their belongings, fleeing west in this exodus from the capital. cnn has obtained exclusive video from ukrainian border guards. you can see military vehicles
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entering ukraine from belarus in the north. president putin went on state tv and announced a special military operation, as he calls it, saying it is to protect the donbas region. the goal that he says is the demille tearization and the de-nazification of ukraine. this small group seen kneeling and praying in the streets of kharkiv. president zelenskyy pleading for peace in a nationally televised address just moments ago. >> putin began war against ukraine, against the entire democratic world. he wants to destroy my country. our country. everything we've been building, everything we are living for. we know the strength of the armed forces of ukraine.


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