Russia to evacuate thousands of children from border areas

Russia plans to evacuate some 9,000 children from a border area as it comes under sustained shelling from Ukraine, an official said, reflecting Kyiv’s growing focus on hitting targets behind its front lines that has in recent months Little has changed.

The children will be moved from the Belgorod region further east, away from the Ukrainian border, the region’s governor, Vyacheslev Gladkov, said.

The news comes a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin said the Kremlin wanted to create a buffer zone to help protect the border region from both long-range attacks by Ukraine and cross-border attacks more than two years into the war.

Ukraine has used long-range firepower to attack refineries and warehouses in Russia and has sought to disrupt Russian border areas and put political pressure on Putin.

Additionally, cross-border attacks have been launched by Russian opponents of Putin and the Kremlin in Ukraine.

Last week, there was an incursion in the Belgorod and Kursk regions that the Russian Defense Ministry said was thwarted by Moscow’s military and security forces, leaving 30 militants dead.

Putin discussed the issue of cross-border incursions at a meeting with senior officials from the Federal Security Service (FSB) on Tuesday.

Belgorod’s civilian areas have been hit with particularly high frequency in recent weeks. Gladkov said 16 people were killed and 98 injured last week.

On Saturday, he ordered shopping malls to close on Monday and schools to close on Tuesday for safety reasons.

The planned evacuation of children is one of the largest publicly announced in the Belgorod region since Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

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About 1,000 people, including children and their families, were evacuated to other parts of Russia in June last year, with other sporadic evacuations reported over the past year.

It’s unclear whether adults will accompany children under the latest evacuation order. If so, the total number of evacuations could be higher.

Gradkov said about 600 people were moved into temporary accommodation after being evacuated from their homes on Monday.

Gradkov said Ukrainian air strikes in the Belgorod region on Tuesday injured three people, including a 14-year-old boy who had part of his limb amputated. He said his mother was also seriously injured in the attack.

Gradkov said four members of the same family were killed in an attack in the village of Belgorod Nikolsko the day before.

He said a missile hit the house of the grandmother, mother, her partner and 17-year-old son, killing them.

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By Ali Raza

I am a dedicated and skilled News Content Writer with a passion for delivering accurate and engaging stories to a diverse audience. With a solid background in journalism and a keen eye for detail, I bring a commitment to excellence and a deep understanding of the evolving media landscape.

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