President Zelensky has just arrived in the area and after observing the carnage, he says that peace talk with Russia may be impossible.
"Negotiations with Putin might not happen after this genocide"- Zelenskyy
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has cast doubt on the possibility of meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin after he accused Russia of genocide.
“It might happen that there will be no negotiations,” Zelensky said on Ukrainian state TV on Tuesday.
Zelensky said it would be understandable to not speak to Putin after accusing Russian troops of carrying out war crimes in Ukraine. “It would be easy to say I’m not going to talk to you — and it would be understandable, after what you have done, that’s why.”
A meeting could happen if Russia were to “bear all the punishments” of committing genocide, he said.
"And in this meeting, we could find the way out of this situation, without losing our territory. I think that this is the bar we have to set for these negotiations. And then we will see. It might happen that there will be no negotiations. It might happen."
Zelensky paid a visit to the Kyiv suburb of Bucha on Monday, an area where shocking images of civilian bodies strewn on the streets emerged over the weekend. During the visit he said that it was “very difficult to negotiate” with Russia “when you see what they have done here.”
Civilian ship attacked in Mariupol port by Russian military, Ukraine says
A civilian ship in the port of Mariupol is on fire and sinking after being hit by Russian troops, according to Ukraine’s Ministry of Interior.
The ship, under a Dominican Republic flag, was berthed in the port when it was hit by shells during an ongoing attack on the besieged southern Ukrainian city, the ministry said in a statement Tuesday on its Telegram channel.
A fire broke out in the engine room before spreading and at least one crew member is known to have been injured, the statement said.
Maritime border guards were able to evacuate some crew to safety but say it is it impossible to continue the rescue operation due to “constant shelling.”
According to the ministry, the captain sent a distress signal using the international maritime safety channel when it came under fire.
“Warning! Warning! The ship under the flag of the Dominican Republic was brutally destroyed, everything was destroyed, the captain’s bridge was destroyed. Fire in engine room. There are wounded on board,” the captain reportedly said.
People instructed to stay indoors after nitric acid tank hit by Russian strike in eastern Ukraine
Residents in the eastern Ukrainian town of Rubizhne have been told to stay indoors after a Russian strike hit a tank of nitric acid, causing a cloud of toxic smoke to cover the area.
It is unclear how much acid was in the tank but the substance is “quite toxic,” the head of the Luhansk regional military administration, Serhiy Haidai, warned on Tuesday.
People have been told to stay indoors or wear a face mask dipped in sodium solution and watch the direction of the wind.
“It’s better to wait inside, this acid will decompose after the rain. But nobody knows when it’s going to rain. So please watch this pink cloud and if it moves towards you — please hide inside and wait inside. This was a direct hit in the tank,” Haidai said in a statement.
It comes as the Russian military said it is shifting its focus to the eastern Donbas region following a withdrawal of forces from around Kyiv and northern Ukraine.