Ukraine’s minister for internal affairs and up to 14 others died in a helicopter crash near Kyiv….
Ukraine President Zelensky makes another plea for kore military assistance to the economic conference in Davos, Switzerland …
Here’s what we know:
It was not immediately clear what caused the helicopter crash, near a kindergarten, but there were no initial signs that it had been shot down.
Ukraine’s minister for internal affairs is among at least 14 people killed in a helicopter crash near Kyiv.
At the crash site, an anguished mother waited for word on her child.
The minister who died in the crash oversaw Ukraine’s police and tens of thousands of war combatants.
Russia shells villages close to Soledar, the scene of intense recent battles.
Scholz confirms Germany’s support for Ukraine at Davos, but makes no mention of tanks.
On a day of World War II commemoration, Putin expresses confidence despite setbacks in Ukraine.
The Pentagon is sending U.S. arms stored in Israel to Ukraine….
Police identified the helicopter as a State Emergency Service aircraft but provided no details about the cause of the crash, which happened around 8:20 a.m. local time while students were attending the kindergarten nearby. At least 25 people, including 11 children, were injured, emergency officials said.
Speaking to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, by video on Wednesday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that the incident could not be considered an accident because it stemmed from the war.
Here’s the latest on the war and its ripple effects across the globe.
- “Several versions of the tragedy are being considered,” SBU officials said at the crash site. Possible causes include a violation of flight rules, a technical malfunction or even sabotage, the SBU said in a statement. Emergency services said earlier that 17 people died in the crash, including three children, but revised the number down later in the day after search and rescue work was concluded.
- Monastyrsky was traveling to a “hot spot” on the front line when the helicopter crashed, said Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy head of Ukraine’s presidential office. He was flying in an EC225 Super Puma helicopter — designed for long-range passenger flights — on a morning when there was heavy fog in Kyiv.
- Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said senior ministry officials Yevhen Yenin and Yuri Lubkovych were among those killed alongside Monastyrsky. He describedthe crash as a “tragedy.” Interior Ministry adviser Anton Gerashchenko remembered his three colleagues as “patriots who worked to make Ukraine stronger.”
- Zelensky urged the world to act with “resolve and speed” to help Ukraine “outpace” Russia’s next push to claim territory. “The supplies of Western tanks must outpace another invasion of Russian tanks,” Zelensky, speaking via video from Kyiv, told the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. NATO countries and other backers are currently debating a response to Ukraine’s pleas for battle tanks.
- NATO defense chiefs are gathering in Brussels for a two-day meeting focused on the war in Ukraine and Euro-Atlantic security. The gathering comes amid a broader diplomatic push to answer Kyiv’s call for more advanced weapons, including tanks, at a crucial moment in the war. In recent weeks, Ukrainian officials have campaigned hard for additional missile defense systems, as well as the Western battle tanks once seen as off-limits.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin met with war veterans in St. Petersburg to mark the 80th anniversary of Soviet forces breaking the Nazi siege of Leningrad. On Tuesday, Russia’s Defense Ministry announced plans to boost the number of personnel in its armed forces to 1.5 million.
- The International Atomic Energy Agency will station safety and security experts at Ukraine’s nuclear power plants starting this week, the organization said in a statement. The planned long-term presence marks a “major expansion” in the IAEA’s efforts to reduce the risk of a severe nuclear accident during the conflict, it said.
- Training has begun for about 90 to 100 Ukrainian soldiers at Fort Sill in Oklahoma, a Pentagon spokesman said at a briefing Tuesday. The training will focus on the use of the Patriot air defense system and will last several months, Brig. Gen. Patrick S. Ryder said.
- Ukraine is still reeling after a weekend strike on an apartment building in Dnipro that killed 45 people, including six children, Zelensky said Tuesday. U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby called it “just egregious to look at what Putin did here over the last 48 hours or so by hitting an apartment complex. It had no military value whatsoever. … It was about killing innocent civilians while they were at home.”….
image of Ukraine Airbus H225 Super Puma….Pinterest
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