Raid Kyiv Monastery

Ukraine Security Services Raid Kyiv Monastery

November 22, 2022
2 mins read

Ukraine’s security service said Tuesday it carried out a raid at a historic Orthodox monastery in Kyiv in order to counter suspected “subversive activities by Russian special services.”

The raid took place at the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra.

A Ukrainian security service statement said the action was aimed at preventing the monastery from being used to shelter sabotage and reconnaissance groups, foreign citizens, or weapons stores.

The Russian Orthodox Church and the Kremlin condemned the raid.

Infrastructure damage

Independent Square (Maidan) in Kyiv, Ukraine, is seen on Nov. 21, 2022.

Ukraine on Monday urged residents in the capital and other areas of the country to limit electricity use as it tries to repair damage to the power grid from Russian strikes while the World Health Organization warned that millions in Ukraine face a “life-threatening” winter.

“This winter will be about survival,” said Hans Kluge, WHO regional director for Europe.

Kluge told reporters Monday, “attacks on health and energy infrastructure mean hundreds of hospitals and health care facilities are no longer fully operational, lacking fuel, water and electricity.”

He also warned of unique health challenges for the country, including “respiratory infections such as COVID-19, pneumonia, influenza and the serious risk of diphtheria and measles in (an) under-vaccinated population.”

In his nightly address Monday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy urged residents in Kyiv to conserve energy, and implored residents in other hard-hit areas of the country to do the same, including in Vinnytsia, Sumy and Odesa.

“The systematic damage to our energy system from strikes by the Russian terrorists is so considerable that all our people and businesses should be mindful and redistribute their consumption throughout the day,” he said.

As bitter winter weather arrives in Ukraine, Russia has been attacking the Ukrainian power grid and other key infrastructure from the air, causing widespread blackouts for millions of Ukrainians.

Ukrainian state-owned grid operator Ukrenergo reported that 40% of Ukrainians were experiencing difficulties, due to damage to at least 15 major energy hubs across the country, The Associated Press reports.

Ukrainians board the Kherson-Kyiv train at the Kherson railway station, southern Ukraine, Nov. 21, 2022.
Ukrainians board the Kherson-Kyiv train at the Kherson railway station, southern Ukraine, Nov. 21, 2022.

In Kherson and the neighboring province of Mykolaiv, Ukrainian authorities are urging civilians to evacuate, fearing that damage to the infrastructure of the recently liberated areas is too severe for people to endure the coming winter.

Residents of the two southern regions, regularly shelled in the past months by Russian forces, have been advised to move to safer areas in the central and western parts of the country, said Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk.

The government will provide transportation, accommodation and medical care, she said.

The evacuations come more than a week after Ukraine freed the city of Kherson and areas around it. The liberation of the area marked a major battlefield gain, while the evacuations now highlight the difficulties the country is facing following heavy Russian shelling of its power infrastructure.

Some information for this story came from The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse and Reuters.

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