Lviv, Ukraine — Russian missiles hit the western Ukrainian city of Lviv on Monday, killing at least seven people, Ukrainian officials said, as Moscow’s troops stepped up strikes on infrastructure in preparation for an all-out assault on the east.

Plumes of thick, black smoke rose over the city after a series of explosions shattered windows and started fires. Lviv and the rest of western Ukraine have seen only sporadic strikes during almost two months of war and have become a relative safe haven for people from parts of the country where fighting has been more intense.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal, meanwhile, vowed to “fight absolutely to the end” in strategically vital Mariupol, where the last known pocket of resistance in a seven-week siege was holed up in a sprawling steel plant laced with tunnels. Russia has repeatedly urged forces there to lay down their arms, but those remaining ignored a surrender-or-die ultimatum on Sunday.

A man carries bicycle along a street filled with destroyed Russian military vehicles near Chernihiv, Ukraine, Sunday, April 17, 2022. Witnesses said multiple explosions believed to be caused by missiles struck the western Ukrainian city of Lviv early Monday as the country was bracing for an all-out Russian assault in the east.

Lviv Mayor Andriy Sadovyi said seven people were killed and 12 wounded in overnight missile strikes. Lviv’s regional governor, Maksym Kozytskyy, said the Russian strikes hit three military infrastructure facilities and a tire shop. He said the wounded included a child, and emergency teams were battling fires caused by the strikes

A hotel sheltering Ukrainians who had fled fighting farther east was among the buildings badly damaged in the attack, the mayor said.



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