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tv   BBC World News America  PBS  February 24, 2022 5:30pm-6:01pm PST

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viewers like you. thank you. announcer: and now, "bbc world news". nada: i'm nada tawfik in new york and this is "bbc world news america." rush alleges a full skill assault on ukraine by land, air, and sea. vladimir putin has this morning. pres. putin: whoever tries to interfere with us or threaten our country should know that russia's response will be immediate and lead to ch consequences that have never been experienced in history. nada: in ukrain's capital, kyiv , an exodus of a fearful residents. president zelensky calls on the international community to help. pres. zelensky: putin started a war against ukraine, against the whole democratic world. he wants to destroy my country.
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he wants to destroy our country, everything we have built, everything we live for. nada: as russia continues its advance, there are reports of casualties on both sides. the international community responds with more sanctions against moscow. prime min. johnson: putin will stand condemned in the eyes of the world and history. he will never be able to cleanse the blood of ukraine from his hands. nada: welcome to "world news america" on pbs and around the globe. ukraine confronts the reality of war. a huge russian military offensive is underway, with attacks by land, air, and sea. fighting is raging in the north, east, and south hours aft moscow's invasion.
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thousands are seeking shelter or trying to flee to the safety of neighboring countries. there are reports of dozens of military and civilian casualties. let's bring you up-toate with events. in a televised address at around 6:00 a.m. moscow time, president putin announced a special military operati in the eastern donbas region aimed at what he called the demilitarization and denazi fication of ukraine. it came as missile strikes were reported on the number of ukrainian military targets. explosions could be heard in several cities in the east of the country as well as the capital, kyiv. russia said it destroyed more than 70 military targets, including 11 airfields, and ukraine says the true noble nuclear plant has been captured by russian forces. following the airstrikes came the land invasion, with russian tanks and troops advancing they reach the border into three main directions, from the east, the south, and the north,
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including from belarus, russia longtime ally. we will discuss all angles of this conflict, the biggest attack on a european state since world war ii, with the first of our reports tonight, international rrespondent orla guerin has the very latest from the fronline of eastern ukraine. orla: one of the opening salvos in russia's war on ukraine, a missile strike on an airport in the west of the country. in kyiv today, a frightening new dawn for europe and ukraine. this city of 3 million awoke to sirens and an invasion. soon, a panicked exodus from the ukrainian capital, as the eu spoke of one of the darkest hours since world war ii.
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darken skies, as russian attack helicopters attacked a milary airport outside kyiv. ukraine said several were shot down. the invasion was by air, sea, and land. president putin, who insisted it would never come, warned that no one should try to stop him. pres. putin: whoever tries to interfere with us or threaten our country should know that russia's response will be immediate and lead to such consequences that have never been experienced in history. orla: hours after he spoke, this was the picture in cities across the country. images from ukraine's northern and southern borders showed moscow's forces streaming in. ukraine's beleaguered president,
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volodymyr zelensky, address the nation dressed for battle. pres. zelensky: what do we hear today? it is not just rocket explosions, combat, and the roar of aircraft. this is the sound of a new iron curtain closing russia away from the civilized world. our national task is to make this curtain not on our territory, but in the homes of russians. nada: ukraine -- orla: ukrainians were not safe in their own homes today. here, the aftermath of a strike on a block of flats in kharkiv, ukraine's second city. missile fragments now on display in the playground. from early morning in eastern ukraine, we found accuse that atm's.-- queues at atm's. now that there is war, people want cash in their pockets and fear it may run short.
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like many here, natalia is try to comprehend what has befallen ukraine, trying to work out how to protect her two-year-old. >> we are shocked. we are totally shocked. we are afraid for our children, for our families. orla: are you thinking about trying to move? >> where can i go? we don't know where to go. who will have us? nobody know where is waiting for us. i don't know, i just don't know. orla: more queues at the petrol stations. many want to be ready for whatever may come, like andre, who felt the explosions overnight. >> i heard it clearly. the earth was rely shaking. so we got up, and now we are
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waiting for fuel. we will buy some so we can in case all communications are cut. we have to prepare. what else can we do? orla: in the battle for ukraine, russia is controlling the skies. here, ukrainian forces respond with small-arms fire. they are outgunned and have en suffering losses. we don't know how many. the attack is a projection of russian strength and western weakness. frenzied international diplomacy and the threat of sanctions failed to stop it.
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this nation is now under sustained assault. a day has chand everything for ukraine and for security in europe. nada: that is orla guerin in eastern ukraine. the bbc's clive myrie has been in kyiv and watching reaction there and from the international community including nato. clive: yen stoltenberg, secretary-general of nato, me clear that all the assurances russians put out the last days and weeks were lies. vladimir putin had made up his mind a long time agohat he was going to do, and today he executed that plan. as you say, it puts the people of this city,, close to 3 million, and across the country, many many million puts them in grave danger. 190, according to u.s. and western intelligence estimates, 190,000 russian troops encircled
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this country for weeks, to the north, to these, and to the south -- to the east, and to the south. what we heard around 5:00 this morning is the sound of air sirens going off, an announcement in russia from vladimir putin that a major attack had taken place, and the sound of the bombardment. crews and ballistic missiles being used, attacking military targets, according to the russians. then you had the ground assault, armored personnel carriers and tanks crossing over the border, and consequently, you have fear and a sense of dread in the city that everything that the west was talking about has actually come to pass, and as a result we are seeing panic and thatense of fear. nada: the kremlin insists its military operation in ukraine will last as long as is necessary.
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president putin, who announced the tion early this morning, warned that any outside interference would lead to an immediate response never previously experienced in history. but there is a sense of shock among some ordinary russians. from moscow, our correspondent steve rosenberg reports. steve: there are moments that change the course of history. would thise one? russia invaded ukraine. its president threatened the west. pres. putin: if anyone tries to stand in our way or even touching ourountry, our people, they should know russia will respond immediately, and this will lead to such consequences the likes of which you have never experienced in your history. steve: russian state tv went into overdrive, backing the assault, claiming ukrainian soldiers were surrendering en masse.
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a different mood here, in one of russia's last surviving independent papers. to show solidarity wit ukraine, tomorrow's edition will be in russian and ukrainian. the paper's editor won last year's nobel peace prize. he believes president putin has done irreparable damage to his country. >> unfortutely, i have to say very bitter words. i think that today, february 24, russia's future was taken away from it. our peaceloving russian people will now feel the hatred of the world as we are starting a third world war in the center of europe. steve: vladimir putin comes across as a leader with an almost messianic idea, to force ukraine back into moscow's orbit, even if that means war. the public--what the public
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might think about that doesn't come into it. he seems determined to achieve his goal. the actions of a government can demonize a whole nation. but keep in mind, amongst the public here theres little support for war with ukraine. >> i'm sorry, so shocked. i just can't help crying. >> i think that most of russian don't support this. it's horrible. steve: and why don't they support it? >> because it's putin, biden, anyone else, but not our naon. steve: "i think the ukrainian soldiers will surrender, and they should. it is terrible to be at war with ukraine." in moscow tonight, hundreds took to the streets. "no to war," they chanted, determined to make their voices
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heard. but they were silenced. u can arrest people, but you cannot force people to support the invasion of a neighboring country. this is not a conflict the russian public wants. this is the kremlin's war. steve rosenberg, bbc news, moscow. nada: there has been a loud chorus of international condemnation, and data will convene a meeting of its 30 leaders--nato will convene a meeting of its 30 leaders on friday to discuss and accept after russia's invasion. president joe biden has announced harsh new sanctions along with the eu and u.k. targeting moscow's financial sectors, exports, and the country's elite. take a listen to what world leaders believe is at stake, starting with president biden. pres. biden: putin is the aggressor. putin chose this war. and now he and his country will bear the consequences. today i am authorizing
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additional strong sanctions and new limitations on what can be exported to russia. this is going to impose a severe cost on the russian economy both immediately and over time. we have purposely designed to maximize the long-term impact on russia and to minimize the impact in the united states on our allies. >> we will hold flesh accountable for this outrageous violation --hold russia accountable for this outrageous violation of ukraine's serenity and territorial integrity. what is at stake is not just donbas, not just ukraine. what is at stake is the stability of europe and the whole international order, our peace order. president putin chose to bring war back to europe. in a determined and united response, the european union will make it as difficult as possible for the kremlin to pursue its aggressive actions.
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prime min. johnson: putin will stand condemned in the eyes of world and of history. he will never cleanse the bod of ukraine from his hands. >> russia has attack ukraine. this is a brutal act of war. our thoughts are with the brave people of ukraine. sadly, what we have warned against for months has come to pass. despite world calls on russia to change course and tireless efforts to seek a double medic solution, peace on ark--- diplomatic solution, peace on our continent has been shattered. we have war in europe on a scale and of a type we thought belonged to history. nada: our state department correspondent barbara plett-usher joins us from washington for more on that u.s.
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sanctions. abra, president biden in his speech said that these sanctions will hurt russia's economic growth long-term. how will they do that? barbara: well, nada, they significantly isolate russia from the western financial system, so they cut off russia's largest banks and largest state owned companies from the western financial markets. they also block e export of sophisticated u.s. technology that is vital for the russian economy, vital for russian industry to build everything from warplanes to smartphones. they have not gone as far as they could. they stop short of cutting pressure off from the global interbank payment system known as swift, although that could happen in the future. in the meantime, russia ill has access to parts of the global economy, especially if china keeps working with it. it's economy is fairly inteated with the u.s. and especially with europe. these measures could have quite a substantial impact over time.
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nada: biden also said that the u.s. and its partners imposing more sanctions make up half of the global economy. but isn't it worth noting that sanctions didn't work in the past, so why do they think they are going to work now? barbara: that is definitely worth noting, especially as much as significant financial reserves that it can use to cushion itself from the blow. but these are very tough measures. they have not been imposed before. they are aimed at squeezing the economy. it is difficult if you are trying to do that because russia is a major economic power. it is the 11th largest economy in the world. if you try to strangle an economy like that, you are going to have pain yourself. for example, they have not targeted the energy sector because russia is a major exporter of oil and gas, especially to europe, and they don't want to disrupt energy markets. mr. biden himself has said he is afraid americans might have to pay or at the pumps.
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he has said that the sanctions could take time to take effect from the medium to long-term. he has urged allies to show resolve and unity to hold the lineor the long haul. nada: a pleasure for us with that analysis -- barbara plett-usher fors without analysis, thank you so much. on two other developments. the price of oil has sorted since russian troops crossed the border into ukraine,urpassing $100 a barrel on thursday for the first time in 8 years. russia is the second bigges exporter of crude oil after saudi arabia and is the world's largest natural gas exporter. news of russia's actions have led to steep falls on global stock markets, as european gas prices have surged by more than 30% foowing the invasion. europe is dependent on russia for oiand gas, with 40% of gas supplies flowing through pipelines that cross ukrainian territory. russia has long been resisting ukraine's shift towards the
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european union, but president putin's sense of grievance goes back to the collapse of the soviet union, and even further to russia's historic loss of territory and power. our world affairs editor john simpson looks at what is motivating the russian leader and what the invasion of ukraine means for the global balance of power. john: it's hard to avoid the feeling that the world as we have known it since the berlin wall came down in 1989 has changed for good. the soviet empire in europe was finished, and western notions of freedom had triumphed. after almost two more years, the revolution had reached russia itself. but after hapless coup attempt by the kgb, boris yelton emerged as the man who would dismantle
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the old soviet system and introduced much greater democracy. yeltsin's eventual successor was an ex-kgb officer, vladimir putin. he insisted he did not want to revive the old soviet union, and he seemed to fit in well with the diplomatic niceties of a world which was now dominated by the united states. yet all the time he was quietly rebuilding russia's armed foes, which had fallen into decay. putin was on a mission to make russia superpower again. western leaders just saw him as someone they could do business with. >> the problem is that they approached pressure with optimism, thinking that russia can be engaged with like a western liberal democracy, not realizing just how rapidly russia is retreating back into its own historical comfort zone of hostility not only to the outside world, but its on population, and its specific
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view of history where in nurses is grievances that are unrecognizable to the outside world. john: ukraine especially seemed to upset him. he hated the way it had gone through independence when the soviet union collapsed. pro-democracy orange revolution was an affront to him. by 2014,e infiltrated his soldiers into crimea, which belonged to ukraine, and completely contrary to international law, he just took it over. a few months later, at a press conference in moscow, i offered him the opportunity to say that he didn't want a new cold war. but he pointedly refused to say that. pres. putin: it is all about protecting our independence, our sovereignty, and our right to exist. john: and yet the west still carried on doing business with vladimir putin as though he was just like any other leader. it was a classic case of
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self-deception. putin's big supporter now is china under xi jinping. no condemnation over ukraine from mr. xi. suddenly the world has changed. we are in a new territory now. it looks distantly like cold war mark two. john simpson, bbc news. nada: with so many development's unfolding, let's go to our correspondent steve rosenberg in moscow. steve, we heard president putin for weeks denying he planned to invade ukraine, and all the while during the shuttle diplomacy he was planning one. in the end, what is he hoping to achieve in ukraine? steve: well, it is the key question, isn't it. what is motivating that important? 12, he is fueled-- well, he is fueled by resentment, resentment
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over how the cold warnded, with the west declaring victory and russia losing its influence and power and territory. he is also motivated by what i would call a semi-religious belief that ukraine has to be with russia, has to be in moscow's orbit. he believes that russia is a great power has the right to its own spheref influence. he also feels that disdain, utter disdain for the west and western leaders. he looks at them as weak and disunited. what can the west do about all of this? it is hard to say because the kremlin were left affected in already western sanctions. the kremlin knows that america is not going to put boots on the ground in ukraine. it is not going to fight on ukrainian territory against russia. the west does not want a war with russia and the russians know that. but i would at this -- we have heard for two years, as
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glendon-- 22 years, as vladimir putin has, as president and prime minister, you start to feel you are invincible, and that is when mistakes creep in. nada: well, and to that, steve, we heard in your package earlier that there is little support from ordinary russians for this war. how has this changed president putin's standing in the country? steve: it'an interesting question. if you look back a couple of months, his rating went up. ase were in this period of what we thought may have been coercive diplomacy, vladimir putin had basically delivered an ultimatum to nato and to america demanding security guarantees. but there is a lot of i'd say unease here about this invasion ukraine, and that could affect his popularity. nada: all right, steve, we have to leave it there. we are out of time, but thank you so much.
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i'm nada tawfik in new york. th for watching "world news america." take care. narrator: fug for this presentation of this program is provided by... man: bdo. accountants and advisors. narrator: funding was also provided by, the freeman foundation. by judy and peter blum kovler foundation; pursuing solutions for america's neglected needs. and by contributions to ts pbs station from viewers like you. thank you. ♪ ♪ narrator: you're watching pbs. ♪ da-da-da-duh-da-da-da♪ ♪ da-da-da-da-da-da ♪♪
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judy: good evening. i'm judy woodruff. judy: on the "newshour" tonight. invasion -- russian airstrikes bombard ukraine as ground forces advance on that nation's capital, and other cities, forcing civilians to flee for their safety. then. pres. biden: "putin chose th war. and now he and his country will bear the consequences." judy: the west's response -- united states and european leaders announce new, harsher economic sanctions on russia -- how effective will they be? and. a verdict -- the three officers who failed to intervene as george floyd was murdered are found guilty of violating his civil rights. and more on tonight's "pbs newshour."


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