Оголошувати про завершення пандемії COVID-19 зарано – ВООЗ

NYC Set to Break Weather Records 

New York City is known for many things and now is breaking some weather records.

Dubbed the city that never sleeps or the big apple, New York has broken a 50-year record — set on January 29, 1973 — for its latest-ever measurable winter snowfall.

Snow is highly unlikely Monday with temperatures expected to reach 10.5 degrees Celsius with mostly sunny conditions expected.

A few days later, the city could also break another record — 332 days without measurable snow, a record set on December 15, 2020.

The fallout from climate change? Probably.

But the snow may come yet. February is a notoriously unpredictable weather month and like the American musician Prince’s well known song goes… sometimes it snows in April.

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TikTok CEO to Testify Before U.S. Congress Over Security Concerns

TikTok Chief Executive Shou Zi Chew will appear before the U.S. Energy and Commerce Committee in March, as lawmakers scrutinize the Chinese-owned video-sharing app.

Chew will testify before the committee on March 23, which will be his first appearance before a congressional committee, said Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers, the Republican chair of the panel, in a statement on Monday.

The news comes as the House Foreign Affairs Committee plans to hold a vote next month on a bill aimed at blocking the use of TikTok in the United States over national security concerns.

“ByteDance-owned TikTok has knowingly allowed the ability for the Chinese Communist Party to access American user data,” McMorris Rodgers said, adding that Americans deserve to know how these actions impact their privacy and data security.

TikTok confirmed on Monday Chew will testify.

TikTok said on Friday “calls for total bans of TikTok take a piecemeal approach to national security and a piecemeal approach to broad industry issues like data security, privacy, and online harms”.

McMorris Rodgers and other Republican lawmakers have demanded more information from TikTok. They want to know its impact on young people amid concerns about harmful content, and they want additional details on potential sexual exploitation of minors on the platform, the statement said.

For three years, TikTok – which has more than 100 million U.S. users – has been seeking to assure Washington that the personal data of U.S. citizens cannot be accessed and its content cannot be manipulated by China’s Communist Party or anyone else under Beijing’s influence.

The U.S. government’s Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), a powerful national security body, in 2020 ordered ByteDance to divest TikTok because of fears that U.S. user data could be passed onto China’s government.

CFIUS and TikTok have been in talks for more than two years aiming to reach a national security agreement to protect the data of U.S. TikTok users.

U.S. House panel to vote next month on possible TikTok ban

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Boris Johnson Says Putin Threatened Missile Strike in Call 

In a new BBC documentary, former British Prime Minister Boris Johnson says Russian President Vladimir Putin threatened Britain with a missile strike. Johnson says the conversation took place during a phone call in the run up to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in February of last year.

Johnson recalled the Russian leader saying, “It would only take a minute… Jolly.”

Johnson, however, said he did not take the threat seriously in their “extraordinary” call. “He was just playing along with my attempts to get him to negotiate,” Johnson said of Putin.

“It’s a lie,” a Kremlin spokesman told reporters about Johnson’s interpretation of the telephone conversation. “There were no threats of missiles.”

Johnson also told the BBC he tried to dissuade Putin from war, telling him Ukraine would not be joining NATO for the “foreseeable future.” Johnson also said he told the Russian leader that an invasion of Ukraine would lead to Western sanctions.

Johnson, who stepped down last year in the wake of a series of scandals, sought to position London as Ukraine’s top ally in the West.

While in office he visited Kyiv several times and called Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy frequently.

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Зеленський поїхав на Миколаївщину

Володимир Зеленський провів нараду з керівництвом регіону, військовими та з силовиками Миколаївщини, також він зустрівся з прем’єркою Данії Метте Фредеріксен

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Philadelphia Eagles, Kansas City Chiefs to Meet in Super Bowl 57

The Philadelphia Eagles and the Kansas City Chiefs will meet in the upcoming U.S. National Football League’s Super Bowl championship game.

The Eagles trounced the visiting San Francisco 49ers 31-7 Sunday in the National Football Conference title game. San Francisco’s offense suffered a key injury early in the game when rookie quarterback Brock Purdy suffered a serious elbow injury. Backup Josh Johnson filled in for Purdy until he was forced out in the third quarter when he suffered a concussion. With the 49ers out of quarterbacks, Purdy, who spent most of the season as the team’s third-string quarterback, returned to the game but was unable to throw deep passes.

Philadelphia quarterback Jalen Hurts, the favorite for the league’s Most Valuable Player award, ended the game with 121 passing yards and one of the Eagles’ four running touchdowns. The Eagles are heading back to the Super Bowl five years after beating the New England Patriots and their then-star quarterback Tom Brady.

Hours later, the Chiefs edged the visiting Cincinnati Bengals 23-20 to win the American Football Conference championship. Kansas City placekicker Harrison Butker made a 3-point field goal with just seconds left in regulation to send the franchise to its third Super Bowl appearance in four years. The Chiefs won the 2020 game 31-20 over the 49ers, but sustained a 31-9 rout one year later to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, led by none other than Tom Brady.

The Bengals were trying to beat the Chiefs in the AFC Championship Game for the second consecutive season.

The 57th edition of the Super Bowl will be held on February 12 in Glendale, Arizona, home of the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals franchise. The game started as a matchup between the old National Football League and its rival American Football League. The two leagues merged in 1970 under the NFL banner, and the Super Bowl has since become one of the sports world’s biggest championship events.

Some information for this report came from The Associated Press, Reuters and Agence France-Presse.

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US Defense Officials Not Losing Sight of China, North Korea

Less than a week after helping secure billions of dollars in additional military assistance for Ukraine in its fight against Russia, including U.S.- and German-made battle tanks, top U.S. defense officials are shifting their focus to the Indo-Pacific and growing threats from China and North Korea. 

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin is making his sixth official visit to the region, starting late Monday with high-level meetings in Seoul, followed by a visit to the Philippines to meet with recently elected President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. and his new national security leadership team. 

“The security environment in the Indo-Pacific is growing more complex, which we see day to day,” said a senior U.S. defense official, citing ever more aggressive behavior by both China and North Korea.   

Specifically, the official, who briefed reporters on the condition of anonymity under ground rules set by the Pentagon, cited a “a sharp uptick in destabilizing PRC [People’s Republic of China] operational behavior,” including what was described as “dangerous air-to-air intercepts” and Beijing’s use of “swarms of maritime militia vessels” in the South China Sea. 

U.S. defense officials also emphasized their concern about North Korea’s growing nuclear arsenal and its ongoing ballistic missile tests, calling the number of test launches unprecedented. 

Pyongyang’s bellicose behavior has stoked growing fears in South Korea, where President Yoon Suk Yeol earlier this month suggested that Washington might need to redeploy nuclear weapons to the peninsula or that Seoul could begin developing its own nuclear arsenal. 

Austin will use meetings Tuesday with Yoon and South Korean Defense Minister Lee Jong-sup to highlight Washington’s “ironclad extended deterrence commitment,” a second senior U.S. defense official said. 

But the official cautioned the deployment of U.S. nuclear weapons to South Korea will not be on the table. 

“We are committed to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula,” the official said. “Our focus is emphasizing the importance of extended deterrence … that includes the full range of U.S. capabilities, including certainly our nuclear abilities, our conventional capabilities, as well as our missile defense.” 

  

It also includes increased cooperation and additional training, including a resumption later this year of U.S.-South Korean joint live-fire exercises on the peninsula following a hiatus of several years. 

“We are committed to doing more,” the official added.   

U.S. defense officials also expect to discuss Seoul’s support for Ukraine and ways the U.S. can deepen its cooperation with South Korea’s defense industry, which the officials praised as a world leader in advanced weaponry. 

Following his meetings in South Korea. Austin will fly to the Philippines, where he will meet with U.S. troops working with their Philippine counterparts in Zamboanga before looking to further cement ties with Manila over shared concerns about China.   

“We’ll be actively talking about what we can do together to address what has been a pretty notable period of harassment and coercion recently in the South China Sea,” said a third senior U.S. defense official, who like the others spoke on the condition of anonymity.   

After several years of tense discourse between Manila and Washington, the official said the Pentagon is seeing “a very positive upswing in the trajectory of the relationship.”   

According to U.S. officials, the Pentagon sees the Philippines as a crucial part of a growing alliance of countries across the Indo-Pacific aimed at pushing back against Beijing, both with and without U.S. help.   

And at the Pentagon, there is hope Austin’s visit will enable both countries to build upon previous defense agreements, including 2014’s Enhanced Defense Cooperation Agreement, and help Manila modernize its forces and pivot from its ongoing counterterrorism mission so it can better confront Beijing.   

“[Austin] will reiterate publicly what we have been very clear about, which is that our treaty commitments do apply in the South China Sea and that an armed attack on Philippine forces or vessels or aircraft in the South China Sea would be relevant to the defense treaty commitments that we have,” the official said.   

Already, the Philippines is one of a handful of countries that gets critical maritime information and intelligence through a new U.S. initiative. And U.S. officials are also hoping to expand cooperation in Manila in the areas of space and cyberspace. 

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Pastor Prays for Peace After Brutal Beating of Tyre Nichols

The pastor at the Memphis church where Tyre Nichols’ family spoke from the pulpit urging peace after his brutal killing reiterated the call for calm Sunday following the release of video showing the fatal beating by police. 

Cities nationwide have braced for protests after body camera footage was released Friday showing Memphis officers beating 29-year-old Nichols, who died of his injuries three days after the January 7 attack. However, protests in Memphis, New York City, Los Angeles and Portland, Oregon, have been scattered and nonviolent. 

“We’ve had calm so far, which is what we have been praying for,” Pastor Kenneth Thomas said before the service began at Mt. Olive Cathedral Church. “And, of course, we hope that continues.” 

Thomas also offered a prayer for Nichols’ family, asking God to “shower them with your blessings.” 

Later, more than a dozen sign-carrying protesters marched to a Memphis police station not far from the beating, pounding on the door and demanding to be let in. Getting no response, they made their way to a nearby gate, guarded by three officers. 

Some protesters taunted the officers with vulgarity, and all chanted: “Quit your job!” But the protest remained peaceful. 

The protesters then observed a three-minute silence, designed to match how long Nichols was beaten. 

When it concluded, protester Jennifer Cain yelled: “Say his name!” And the group responded: “Tyre Nichols!” 

“Now, just imagine being beat by people that’s over 1,000 pounds on you and you’re only less than 150 pounds,” Cain said. “That’s three minutes of beating, screaming and yelling for his mom.” 

“When does it stop?” she asked. “When does it end? Are we going to continue to let it happen?” 

The loss is “still very emotional” for the family, a lawyer representing them said Sunday, but they are using all their energy to advocate for reforms both in Memphis and on the federal level. 

“His mother is having problems sleeping but she continues to pray with the understanding, as she believes in her heart, that Tyre was sent here for an assignment, and that there will be a greater good that comes from this tragedy,” Attorney Ben Crump said on ABC’s “This Week.” 

Crump welcomed disbanding the city’s so-called Scorpion unit, which Police Director Cerelyn “CJ” Davis announced Saturday, citing a “cloud of dishonor” from the newly released video. 

Davis acted a day after the harrowing video was released, saying she listened to Nichols’ relatives, community leaders and uninvolved officers in making the decision. Her announcement came as the nation and the city struggled to come to grips with the violence of the officers, who, like Nichols, are Black. The video renewed outrage over repeated fatal encounters with law enforcement despite nationwide demands for change. 

Crump told “This Week” that Nichols’ case points to a systemic problem in how people of color are treated regardless of whether officers are white, Black or any other race. 

The “implicit, biased police” culture that exists in America is just as responsible for Nichols’ death as the five Black officers who killed him, Crump said. 

“I believe it’s part of the institutionalized police culture that makes it somehow allowed that they can use this type of excessive force and brutality against people of color,” Crump said. “It is not the race of the police officer that is the determinant factor whether they’re going to engage in excessive use of force, but it is the race of the citizen.” 

He alleged other members of the Memphis community have been assaulted by the now-shuttered Scorpion unit, which was composed of about 30 officers whose stated aim was to target violent offenders in high-crime areas. The unit had been inactive since Nichols’ January 7 arrest. 

Scorpion stands for Street Crimes Operations to Restore Peace In Our Neighborhoods. 

The officers involved in Nichols’ beating — Tadarrius Bean, Demetrius Haley, Desmond Mills Jr., Emmitt Martin III and Justin Smith — have been fired and charged with murder and other crimes in Nichols’ death. They face up to 60 years in prison if convicted of second-degree murder. 

Video showed the officers savagely beating Nichols, a FedEx worker, for three minutes while screaming profanities at him. Nichols called out for his mother before his limp body was propped against a squad car and the officers exchange fist-bumps. 

Brenda Goss Andrews, president of the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives, told The Associated Press she was struck by the immediate aggression from officers as soon as they got out of the car. “It just went to 100. … This was never a matter of de-escalation,” she said, adding, “The young man never had a chance.” 

On a phone call with U.S. President Joe Biden, Crump and Nichols’ parents discussed the need for federal reform like the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, which would prohibit racial profiling, ban chokeholds and no-knock warrants, limit the transfer of military equipment to police departments, and make it easier to bring charges against offending officers. 

Biden said he told Nichols’ mother he would be “making a case” to Congress to pass the Floyd Act “to get this under control.” 

Memphis Police had already implemented reforms after Floyd’s killing, including a requirement to de-escalate or intervene if they saw others using excessive force. 

Speaking on “This Week,” Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, who chairs the Judiciary Committee, said Congress can pass additional measures like “screening, training, accreditation, to up the game so that the people who have this responsibility to keep us safe really are stable and approaching this in a professional manner.” 

The fact that law enforcement is primarily a state and local responsibility “does not absolve us. Under the federal Constitution we have standards, due process standards and others, that we are responsible for,” Durbin said. 

“What we saw on the streets of Memphis was just inhumane and horrible,” he said. “I don’t know what created this — this rage in these police officers that they would congratulate themselves for beating a man to death. But that is literally what happened.” 

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Barrett Strong, Motown Artist Known for ‘Money,’ Dies at 81

Barrett Strong, one of Motown’s founding artists and most gifted songwriters who sang lead on the company’s breakthrough single “Money (That’s What I Want)” and later collaborated with Norman Whitfield on such classics as “I Heard It Through the Grapevine,” “War” and “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone,” has died. He was 81.     

His death was announced Sunday on social media by the Motown Museum, which did not immediately provide further details.     

“Barrett was not only a great singer and piano player, but he, along with his writing partner Norman Whitfield, created an incredible body of work,” Motown founder Berry Gordy said in a statement.     

Strong had yet to turn 20 when he agreed to let his friend Gordy, in the early days of building a recording empire in Detroit, manage him and release his music. Within a year, he was a part of history as the piano player and vocalist for “Money,” a million-seller released early in 1960 and Motown’s first major hit. Strong never again approached the success of “Money” on his own, and decades later fought for acknowledgement that he helped write it. But, with Whitfield, he formed a productive and eclectic songwriting team.     

While Gordy’s “Sound of Young America” was criticized for being too slick and repetitive, the Whitfield-Strong team turned out hard-hitting and topical works, along with such timeless ballads as “I Wish It Would Rain” and “Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me).” With “I Heard it Through the Grapevine,” they provided an up-tempo, call-and-response hit for Gladys Knight and the Pips and a dark, hypnotic ballad for Marvin Gaye, his 1968 version one of Motown’s all-time sellers.      

As Motown became more politically conscious late in the decade, Barrett-Whitfield turned out “Cloud Nine” and “Psychedelic Shack” for the Temptations and for Edwin Starr the protest anthem “War” and its widely quoted refrain, “War! What is it good for? Absolutely … nothing!”     

“With `War,’ I had a cousin who was a paratrooper that got hurt pretty bad in Vietnam,” Strong told LA Weekly in 1999. “I also knew a guy who used to sing with (Motown songwriter) Lamont Dozier that got hit by shrapnel and was crippled for life. You talk about these things with your families when you’re sitting at home, and it inspires you to say something about it.”     

Whitfield-Strong’s other hits, mostly for the Temptations, included “I Can’t Get Next to You,” “That’s the Way Love Is” and the Grammy-winning chart-topper “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone” (Sometimes spelled “Papa Was a Rolling Stone”). Artists covering their songs ranged from the Rolling Stones (“Just My Imagination”) and Aretha Franklin (“I Wish It Would Rain”) to Bruce Springsteen (“War”) and Al Green (“I Can’t Get Next to You”).    

Strong spent part of the 1960s recording for other labels, left Motown again in the early 1970s and made a handful of solo albums, including “Stronghold” and “Love is You.” In 2004, he was voted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame, which cited him as “a pivotal figure in Motown’s formative years.”      

Whitfield died in 2008.     

The music of Strong and other Motown writers was later featured in the Broadway hit “Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of the Temptations.”    

Strong was born in West Point, Mississippi and moved to Detroit a few years later. He was a self-taught musician who learned piano without needing lessons and, with his sisters, formed a local gospel group, the Strong Singers. In his teens, he got to know such artists as Franklin, Smokey Robinson and Gordy, who was impressed with his writing and piano playing. “Money”’ with its opening shout, “The best things in life are free/But you can give them to the birds and bees,” would, ironically, lead to a fight — over money.      

Strong was initially listed among the writers and he often spoke of coming up with the pounding piano riff while jamming on Ray Charles’ “What’d I Say” in the studio. But only decades later would he learn that Motown had since removed his name from the credits, costing him royalties for a popular standard covered by the Beatles, the Rolling Stones and many others and a keepsake on John Lennon’s home jukebox. Strong’s legal argument was weakened because he had taken so long to ask for his name to be reinstated. (Gordy is one of the song’s credited writers, and his lawyers contended Strong’s name only appeared because of a clerical error).      

“Songs outlive people,” Strong told The New York Times in 2013. “The real reason Motown worked was the publishing. The records were just a vehicle to get the songs out there to the public. The real money is in the publishing, and if you have publishing, then hang on to it. That’s what it’s all about. If you give it away, you’re giving away your life, your legacy. Once you’re gone, those songs will still be playing.” 

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House Speaker McCarthy Optimistic on US Debt Deal

U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy promised Sunday the United States would not default on its national debts as the country approaches its $31.4 trillion spending limit in June but said the government cannot continue to annually spend more than it collects in taxes.

McCarthy, leader of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, told CBS’s “Face the Nation” show that he will meet with Democratic President Joe Biden on Wednesday, the first discussions in what could be protracted debt ceiling talks over several months.

The U.S. must raise its debt ceiling before it runs out of money to pay bills it has already incurred. Biden and Democrats want a “clean” approval to raise the debt ceiling not tied to future spending, while Republicans have called for limits on new spending to curb yearly deficits, chronic overspending that often totals more than $1 trillion annually.

“We’re not going to default,” McCarthy said.

The U.S. has never defaulted on its debts, such as on Treasury notes sold to China, Japan and individual Americans, but its credit rating was downgraded in 2011 when Democratic President Barack Obama and congressional Republicans sparred at length over the country’s spending before eventually reaching a 10-year agreement.

Now, McCarthy said, the country’s debt totals 120% of its national economic output, with the debt significantly added to in recent years for two main reasons, the national tax cuts Republicans approved under former President Donald Trump and unfunded coronavirus aid relief approved under both Trump and Biden.

“We haven’t been in this place to debt since World War II,” McCarthy said. “So, we can’t continue down this path. And I don’t think there’s anyone in America who doesn’t agree that there’s some wasteful Washington spending that we can eliminate.”

“So, I want to sit down together, work out an agreement that we can move forward, to put us on a path to balance — at the same time, not put any — any of our debt in jeopardy at the same time,” he said. “We shouldn’t just print more money; we should balance our budget. So, I want to look at every single department. Where can we become more efficient, more effective, and more accountable?”

McCarthy, like Biden, ruled out cuts to two of the most popular government programs, pensions and health care for older Americans, respectively known as Social Security and Medicare.

But he added, “I want to look at every single dollar we’re spending, no matter where it’s being spent. I want to eliminate waste wherever it is.”

He compared government spending to an American family’s budget, saying, “Every family does this. What is – what has happened with the debt limit is you reached your credit card limit. Should we just continue to raise the limit? Or should we look at what we’re spending?”

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Russians Gone From Ukraine Village, Fear and Hardship Remain

When night falls in Tatiana Trofimenko’s village in southern Ukraine, she pours sunflower oil that aid groups gave her into a jar and seals it with a wick-fitted lid. A flick of a match, and the make-do candle is lit.

“This is our electricity,” Trofimenko, 68, says.

It has been over 11 weeks since Ukrainian forces wrested back her village in Kherson province from Russian occupation. But liberation has not diminished the hardship for residents of Kalynivske, both those returning home and the ones who never left. In the peak of winter, the remote area not far from an active front line has no power or water. The sounds of war are never far.

Russian forces withdrew from the western side of the Dnieper River, which bisects the province, but remain in control of the eastern side. A near constant barrage of fire from only a few kilometers away, and the danger of leftover mines leaving many Ukrainians too scared to venture out, has rendered normalcy an elusive dream and cast a pall over their military’s strategic victory.

Still, residents have slowly trickled back to Kalynivske, preferring to live without basic services, dependent on humanitarian aid and under the constant threat of bombardment than as displaced people elsewhere in their country. Staying is an act of defiance against the relentless Russian attacks intended to make the area unlivable, they say.

“This territory is liberated. I feel it,” Trofimenko says. “Before, there were no people on the streets. They were empty. Some people evacuated, some people hid in their houses.”

“When you go out on the street now, you see happy people walking around,” she says.

The Associated Press followed a United Nations humanitarian aid convoy into the village on Saturday, when blankets, solar lamps, jerrycans, bed linens and warm clothes were delivered to the local warehouse of a distribution center.

Russian forces captured Kherson province in the early days of the war. The majority of the nearly 1,000 residents in Kalynivske remained in their homes throughout the occupation. Most were too fragile or ill to leave, others did not have the means to escape.

Gennadiy Shaposhnikov lies on the sofa in a dark room, plates piled up beside him.

The 83-year old’s advanced cancer is so painful it is hard for him to speak. When a mortar destroyed the back of his house, neighbors rushed to his rescue and patched it up with tarps. They still come by every day, to make sure he is fed and taken care of.

“Visit again, soon,” is all he can muster to say to them.

Oleksandra Hryhoryna, 75, moved in with a neighbor when the missiles devastated her small house near the village center. Her frail figure steps over the spent shells and shrapnel that cover her front yard. She struggles up the pile of bricks, what remains of the stairs, leading to her front door.

She came to the aid distribution center pulling her bicycle and left with a bag full of tinned food, her main source of sustenance these days.

But it’s the lack of electricity that is the major problem, Hryhoryna explains. “We are using handmade candles with oil and survive that way,” she says.

The main road that leads to her home is littered with the remnants of the war, an eerie museum of what was and what everyone here hopes will never return. Destroyed Russian tanks rust away in the fields. Cylindrical anti-tank missiles gleam, embedded in grassy patches. Occasionally, there is the tail end of a cluster munition lodged into the earth.

Bright red signs emblazoned with a skull warn passersby not to get too close.

The Russians left empty ammunition boxes, trenches and tarp-covered tents during their rapid retreat. A jacket and, some kilometers away, men’s underwear hangs on the bare branches. And with the Russians waging ongoing attacks to win back the lost ground in Kherson, it is sometimes hard for terrorized residents to feel as if the occupying forces ever left.

“I’m very afraid,” says Trofimenko. “Even sometimes I’m screaming. I’m very, very scared. And I’m worried about us getting shelled again and for (the fighting) to start again. This is the most terrible thing that exists.”

The deprivation suffered in the village is mirrored all over Kherson, from the provincial capital of the same name to the constellation of villages divided by tracts of farmland that surround it. Ukrainian troops reclaimed the territory west of the Dnieper River in November after a major counteroffensive led to a Russian troop withdrawal, hailed as one of the greatest Ukrainian victories of the war that’s now in its 12th month..

The U.N. ramped up assistance, supporting 133,000 individuals in Kherson with cash assistance, and 150,000 with food. Many villagers in Kalynivske say the food aid is the only reason they have something to eat.

“One of the biggest challenges is that the people who are there are the most vulnerable. It’s mainly the elderly, many who have a certain kind of disability, people who could not leave the area, and are really reliant on aid organizations and local authorities who are working around the clock,” says Saviano Abreu, a spokesperson for the U.N. Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

The shelling is constant.

Ukraine’s Defense Ministry reports near daily incidents of shelling in Kherson city and surrounding villages, including rocket, artillery and mortar attacks. Most fall closer to the river banks nearer to the front line, but, that doesn’t mean those living further away feel any safer. On Friday, a missile fell in the village of Kochubeivka, north of Kalynivske, killing one person.

“Kherson managed to resume most of the essential services, but the problem is the hostilities keep creating challenges to ensure they are sustained,” Abreu says. “Since December, it’s getting worse and worse. The number of attacks and hostilities there is only increasing.”

Without electricity, there is no means to pump piped drinking water. Many line up to fetch well water, but a lot is needed to perform daily functions, residents complain.

To keep warm, many forage around the village for firewood, a task that presents danger post-occupation.

Everyone in Kalynivske knows the story of Nina Zvarech. She went looking for firewood in the nearby forest and was killed when she stepped on a mine.

Her body lay there for over a month because her relatives were too afraid to go and find her.

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