‘Zim doing its best to evacuate nationals in Ukraine’

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BY TAPFUMANEI MUCHABAIWA
GOVERNMENT yesterday urged Zimbabwean nationals in Ukraine to get in touch with the embassy in preparation for evacuation after Russia launched a full-scale invasion of that country.

This came amid reports that over 200 Zimbabwean students were stuck in Ukraine as they had no Schengen visas to flee to neighbouring Poland.

Foreign Affairs ministry spokesperson Livit Mugejo yesterday said the government was seized with the Ukraine situation and was doing all it could to evacuate its nationals.

“The government is seized with the developments in Ukraine. Our embassy in Germany is in touch with most of our students in Ukraine and is currently assisting our nationals in that country,” Mugejo told NewsDay.

“We have also formed a WhatsApp group which we are using to communicate with those who have registered with us.

“Those who haven’t registered can still do so through our email address infor@zimembassyberlin.com or call on +49 030 23255676. So far we have 17 students who have registered with us, but the number keeps on increasing.”

Russian forces invaded Ukraine by land, air and sea yesterday morning. Missiles rained down on Ukrainian cities.

Ukraine’s military said it had destroyed four Russian tanks on a road near Kharkiv, killed 50 troops near a town in Luhansk region and downed six Russian warplanes in the east.

Russia denied reports that its aircraft or armoured vehicles had been destroyed. Russian-backed separatists claimed to have downed two Ukrainian planes, meanwhile.

In a televised declaration of war in the early hours, Russian President Vladimir Putin said he had ordered “a special military operation” to protect people, including Russian citizens, subjected to “genocide” in Ukraine, an accusation Western countries called absurd propaganda.

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