The Russian Army announced the encirclement of two major cities in South and Southeast Ukraine

Russia's military operation in Ukraine began at 5 am (local time) on February 24 with a series of anti-aircraft missiles launched from both sea, air and land.

Russia's military operation in Ukraine began at 5 am (local time) on February 24 with a series of anti-aircraft missiles launched from both sea, air and land.

The Russian military claims they have "completely" surrounded the city of Kherson in southern Ukraine and the city of Berdyansk in southeastern Ukraine.

"In the past 24 hours, the cities of Kherson and Berdyansk have been completely blockaded by the Russian armed forces," Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said in a statement quoted by Russian news agencies.

Ukrainian soldiers stand next to a burning military truck on a street in Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, February 26, 2022. Photo: AP
Ukrainian soldiers stand next to a burning military truck on a street in Kyiv, Ukraine, Saturday, February 26, 2022. Photo: AP

Meanwhile, Regional Governor Oleh Sinegubov said that Ukrainian forces are fighting the Russian Army on the streets of the city of Kharkiv, northeastern Ukraine.

"Light vehicles of the Russian forces have penetrated into Kharkiv, including the city center," Sinegubov said. “Ukrainian armed forces are destroying the enemy. We ask civilians not to go out.”

Artwork: Al Jazeera
Artwork: Al Jazeera

Video released by Ukraine's State Special Communications and Information Protection Service shows several light military vehicles moving along a street as well as an image of a burning tank.

The adviser to Ukraine's interior minister said that "heavy fighting" took place when the Russian army entered Kharkiv - Ukraine's second city.

Ukrainian soldiers sit on an armored personnel carrier on Thursday as they drive on a road in the Donetsk region. Photo: AP
Ukrainian soldiers sit on an armored personnel carrier on Thursday as they drive on a road in the Donetsk region. Photo: AP

"Russian military forces have raided Kharkiv city with military means and started fierce fighting in the city," said Oleg Sinegubov, chairman of the Kharkiv regional state government.

Civilians have been told to stay indoors, open fire and throw petrol bombs at the occupiers from their homes, through windows.

Information continues to be updated.

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