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Ukraine war: Putin is destroying cities and his ‘disgusting’ invasion must not succeed, says Boris Johnson

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ladimir Putin’s regime must not be allowed to succeed in his “disgusting” invasion, Boris Johnson said, as Russian bombardment of key towns intensified and dozens more civilians were reported to have died.

The Prime Minister said “innocent civilians were being killed and cities destroyed, and the world could not allow President Putin’s aggression to succeed” in a call discussing the conflict with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Thursday evening, his spokesperson said.

“The Prime Minister said that the actions of the Russian regime in Ukraine were disgusting,” he said.

It came as battles over key cities in Ukraine raged on. Ukrainian forces were fighting Russian troops on the outskirts of the southern vital energy-producing city of Enerhodar, the site of the biggest nuclear plant in Europe.

While residents of the port city of Mariupol were trying to survive a relentless barrage of Russian shelling that has smashed residential districts and cut off power and water supplies.

“There has been no light, no heat, and no water now for two full days and we have hardly any food left,” Maxim, 27, an IT developer who was hiding in his grandparents’ apartment told the BBC.

New shelling was reported in the northern city of Chernihiv, where emergency officials said at least 22 civilians had been killed in a Russian bombardment of a residential area.

They warned that the number of casualties could grow as rescuers search the debris. The mayor said he was struggling to organise safe passage for civilians.

Russian forces have also been bombarding the country’s second-biggest city, Kharkiv, where swathes of the centre of the city have been reduced to rubble.

Families with children fled via muddy and snowy roads in the eastern region of Donetsk, while military strikes on the village of Yakovlivka near the eastern city of Kharkiv destroyed 30 homes, leaving three dead and seven injured, and rescuers pulled 10 people from the ruins, according to emergency authorities.

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