What Happened This Weekend (June 4-5): NPR

Smoke rises from a railway service hit in Kiev by a Russian missile attack on Sunday.

Natacha Pisarenko/AP


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Natacha Pisarenko/AP

What Happened This Weekend (June 4-5): NPR

Smoke rises from a railway service hit in Kiev by a Russian missile attack on Sunday.

Natacha Pisarenko/AP

As the weekend in Kiev and Moscow draws to a close, here are the key developments:

Putin warned against hitting new targets if Ukraine gets long-range weapons from abroad. As his country attacks Kiev, the Russian president said on Sunday that Moscow would “hit objects we have not hit yet” if the West provides Ukraine with long-range missile systems. The threat from Vladimir Putin came less than a week after the US said it would send advanced weapons to Ukraine as part of a $700 million security aid package. Delivery includes precise medium-range missile systems.

Russia attacks Kiev after weeks of security. On Sunday morning, Russia bombed Ukraine’s capital for the first time in more than a month. Four Russian missiles hit four separate buildings at a major railcar repair center. Russia claimed it bombed tanks, but journalists on the ground saw no evidence of weapons.

Opera in Kiev is back. After a three-month hiatus during which the sound of air raid sirens and rocket fire reverberated throughout the city, the National Opera House in Ukraine reopened. The Kyiv Opera Company kicks off the opening with a production of Natalka Poltavkaa romantic drama with Ukrainian folk songs.

Ukraine’s World Cup dream ends. The men’s national team took a 3-1 win over Scotland last week before losing to Wales in the qualifying round on Sunday. The 1-0 defeat gave Ukraine hopes of entering the 2022 tournament in Qatar, which would be the country’s first time qualifying for a World Cup since 2006.

What should you watch out for this week?

An important city in Ukraine could fall under Russian control. Russian forces have made recent gains in eastern Ukraine, with ongoing attacks on Severodonetsk, a city in the western Donbas region. Officials say the city, a key area in Moscow’s goal to take all of Donbas, could fall under Russian control in the coming days. Before invading Ukraine in February, Putin recognized the independence of two separatist regions in the Donbas as part of his justification for sending troops into the country.

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Read more summaries here. For context and more in-depth stories, you can find NPR’s full coverage here. Also listen and subscribe to NPRs State of Ukraine podcast for updates throughout the day.

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