RTE’s Tony Connelly moved to hotel basement in Ukraine following ‘more Russian airstrikes’
RTE’s Tony Connelly has been moved to his hotel basement in Ukraine after reports of another ‘airborne Russian assault’.
Vladimir Putin has declared a “special military operation” in Ukraine after months of massing his forces on the border and lying to the world about his invasion plans.
Ukrainians were faced with the sound of blaring explosions and air raid sirens as missiles, airstrikes and artillery shells fell on their homeland early this morning.
And RTE’s Europe editor has taken to social media to inform its subscribers in the country.
He wrote on Twitter: “Just moved to hotel basement in Kyiv amid fears of further Russian airstrikes.”
He later added: “A Russian airborne assault is currently underway in Kyiv, according to eyewitnesses and video footage.
Meanwhile, Irish in Ukraine are urged to “shelter in a safe place”.
The Foreign Office has issued “urgent” consular advisories to Irish citizens in the country.
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A spokesperson wrote: “All Irish citizens in Ukraine should take shelter in a safe place.
“Do not travel around the country in the coming hours. Please follow the advice of local authorities.
“We will be posting regular updates to @dfatirl as the situation evolves.”
Taoiseach Micheal Martin said Ireland stood with Ukraine as he strongly condemned Russia’s attack.
He wrote on Twitter: “I totally condemn Russia’s indefensible attack on the sovereign people of Ukraine.
“Our first thoughts are with them. We will work with the EU and the UN to hold Putin and his regime accountable.
“Russia will pay a high price for this outrageous act of aggression.
“We stand with Ukraine.”
Foreign Secretary Simon Coveney also called Russia’s invasion of Ukraine a “shocking, deadly act of aggression”.
Coveney said his “thoughts and prayers” are with the people of Ukraine and said a strong response from Europe and the world was needed.
‘GOD HELP THEM’
He wrote on Twitter: “Russia has launched a full scale invasion of Ukraine. God help them. Rocket attacks and explosions across the country.
“Make no mistake: this is a shockingly murderous act of aggression against a peaceful sovereign state.
“The EU and the world must react strongly.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with the innocent people of Ukraine as families wake up to the shocking Russian attacks.
“Russian leaders are lying to their own people to justify this unlawful aggression.
“We totally condemn Russia for this unjustifiable act of war in the heart of Europe.
“Our diplomatic team in Kyiv has moved to a safe location and we remain in close contact with them.
“We are working with EU colleagues to ensure their safety.
“At the emergency meeting of the UN Security Council, Ireland condemned Russia’s decision to launch a military operation and called on UNSC members to ‘assume their responsibility and speak out in the strongest possible terms on this act of aggression”.