HARROWING pictures show innocent Ukrainians fleeing their country as Putin’s tanks rolled into the besieged nation.
Millions are heading west or sheltering in place as explosions hit the capital Kyiv and other major cities early on Thursday morning.
Chilling photos show Ukraine as President Volodymyr Zelenskyy urges people to stay home[/caption]
Motorists tried to leave Kyiv but were met with gridlocked highways[/caption]
Couples hugged outside metro stations in Kyiv[/caption]
Ukrainians packed their cars with their belongings before leaving[/caption]
Kyiv was rocked by several explosions as dramatic footage showed smoke rising from buildings and loud blasts echoed around the city.
Terrified families took shelter inside subway stations while long queues were seen on platforms.
Couples were sat on their floor with their luggage as they searched for information on their cell phones.
Footage that has been watched more than 25,000 times online shows stranded motorists trying to leave Kyiv as air raid sirens were tested.
Residents rushed to gas stations as they tried to head out of Kyiv but were met with gridlocked highways.
Pictures show lines of cars queuing at a gas station in Sievierodonetsk in Luhansk – one of the provinces that Vladimir Putin declared “independent” earlier this week, with some Ukrainians stopping at ATMs beforehand.
Most read in The Sun
On the Buses and EastEnders star Anna Karen dies in house fire aged 85
MAD AT MADELEY
GMB hit by HUNDREDS of Ofcom complaints over Richard Madeley comments
EastEnders Keegan Baker star Zack Morris exits and has filmed his final scenes
I named my daughter after a pair of TRAINERS – she rolls her eyes but I love it
Nicole Scherzinger answers pregnancy rumours as she dances in tiny pink bikini
EastEnders' Luisa Bradshaw-White smiles as she arrives at VERY different job
While some tried to flee Kyiv, commuters were seen traveling to work even as air raid sirens blared.
Dozens of Ukrainians were also seen waiting in lines at pharmacies across Kyiv after residents were urged to stay home.
A salvo of missiles and airstrikes hit Ukraine as Putin launched his long-feared full-scale assault, sparking outrage around the world.
Around 200,000 Russian troops were ready to move in as they were stationed in the north, south, and east of Ukraine.
Hundreds are already feared to have been killed and the death toll could rise in the hundreds of thousands, with millions displaced.
Tanks have allegedly been seen on the ring road in Kharkiv and moved into Mariupol
Ukrainian president Zelenskyy declared marital law and urged his people to stay home.
“We are working. The army is working,” he said. “Don’t panic. We are strong. We are ready for everything. We will defeat everyone. Because we are Ukraine.”
Zelenskyy rejected Moscow’s claims that Ukraine posed a threat to Russia and made an emotional plea for peace to the people of Russia.
“You are being told that this is a plan to free the people of Ukraine,” he said while speaking in Russian. “But the Ukrainian people are free.”
And, Ukraine’s ambassador to the UN Sergiy Kyslytsya has told his Russian counterpart: “There is no purgatory for war criminals.
“They go straight to hell.”
Biden said in a statement: “President Putin has chosen a premeditated war that will bring a catastrophic loss of life and human suffering.
“Russia alone is responsible for the death and destruction this attack will bring, and the United States and its Allies and partners will respond in a united and decisive way. The world will hold Russia accountable.”
The president added that there will be “further consequences” imposed on Russia and is to issue an address in the early afternoon tomorrow.
Meanwhile, Boris Johnson said he was left “appalled” by the events in Ukraine.
He said: “President Putin has chosen a path of bloodshed and destruction by launching this unprovoked attack on Ukraine.
“The UK and our allies will respond decisively.
Putin has warned any foreign powers that intervene face “untold consequences.
Even as explosions were heard across the nation, Russia’s defense ministry denied “missile, air or artillery strikes on the cities of Ukraine.”
But they confirmed military infrastructure, air defense facilities, military airfields and aviation of the Ukrainian army were being disabled by precision weapons.
Soldiers inspect the remains of a Russian missile that landed in the streets of Kyiv[/caption]
Explosions hit Krasnopolyse, located in the Sumy Oblast Ukraine[/caption]
Blasts were also reported in major cities including Kharkiv[/caption]
More to follow…
For the latest news on this story keep checking back at Sun Online.
The-sun.com is your go-to destination for the best celebrity news, sport news, real-life stories, jaw-dropping pictures and must-see video.
Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheSunUS and follow us from our main Twitter account at @TheUSSun.
We pay for your stories!
Do you have a story for The US Sun team?
Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 212 416 4552.
Like us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TheSunUS and follow us from our main Twitter account at @TheSunUS