As Putin’s bombs rained down on Kyiv tonight a tiny miracle was brought into the world amid the chaos.
While invading Russian forces bombarded terrified families, one woman had reason to be perhaps more fearful than others.
Her baby was due as she hid protected from the onslaught in a shelter in the city as gunfire raged outside.
But just before 8.30pm, tiny Mia was brought into the world in what must have been some of the most stressful circumstances to give birth.
Last night her arrival was being hailed a miracle as her story prompted one woman to declare ‘Your birth is hope in this dismal time’.
The picture of her tiny had gripping her mother’s in the shelter was hailed as beacon of hope amid Ukraine’s darkest hour.
The incredible delivery was revealed by Chairwoman of Democracy in Action Conference Hannah Hopko.
She said: ‘Mia was born in shelter this night in stressful environment- bombing of Kyiv.
‘Her mom is happy after this challenging birth giving.
‘When Putin kills Ukrainians we call mothers of Russia and Belarus to protest against Russia war in Ukraine . We defend lives and humanity.’
As Kyiv was attacked by Russian forces, inside a bomb shelter a little baby girl called Mia was finally brought into the world
Elsewhere underneath a maternity ward in the basement a baby boy was born away from chaotic and violent scenes outside
The little boy, seen here with his mother can have no idea of the turmoil around in as Russia’s force mass on Kyiv
After news of Mia’s birth spread, she was hailed a ‘miracle’ and a beacon of hope in Ukraine and Kyiv’s darkest times
Incredibly tiny Mia is not the only baby born during the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
A maternity ward doctor – who posted with permission of the mother – said a newborn boy was also brought into the world overnight.
Due to the bombardment the reception had been destroyed so came in the basement.
The doctor added: ‘In conditions, far from those who deserve a new life – the voice of the newborn… It’s a boy!’
Kyiv has endured one of its bitterest nights of fighting and its armed forces said they had shot down a Russian military transport plane carrying 150 paratroopers on its outskirts.
The plane came down near Vasylkiv, 20 miles south of Kyiv, the Ukrainian military said.
The fate of those onboard was unclear. The aircrafts – medium-range military transport aircraft, which first went into service in 1974 – can hold 150-225 fully-equipped soldiers, and is used to drop paratroopers into combat and resupply arms.
Not long after, Ukraine’s State Agency for Special Communications said that Ukraine’s air defense had downed a Russian close-support aircraft and a helicopter in Donbas.
Volodymyr Zelensky, the president of Ukraine, is seen addressing the nation on Friday night
Photos posted to social media showed what they said were explosions in Kyiv on Friday night
Ukrainians sing their national anthem in a basement in Cherkasy, 120 miles south of Kyiv
Russian troops are now advancing on Kyiv from the north and east, with US intelligence saying the plan is to besiege the city, capture an airport, and fly in paratroopers who would then attack the capital. The aim would be to capture the government and force them to sign a peace treaty handing control of the country back to Russia or a Russian puppet
UKRAINE WAR: LATEST
- Russia said it is not willing to negotiate with Ukraine’s government until military operation is over
- Came after Zelensky called for a sit-down with Putin to end the fighting
- Putin said he would be willing to send a team of negotiators to meet Zelensky – in Belarus, which is helping with the invasion
- Russian president then called on Ukrainian military to overthrow the ‘regime’ in Kyiv
- China’s President Xi spoke to Putin by phone, called for diplomatic solution to the fighting
- Ukraine says Russia has bombed 33 civilian sites in Kyiv in the last 24 hours
- Two children have been reported killed in Kyiv bombing overnight
- Ukraine has banned men aged 18 to 60 from leaving the country to conscript them into armed forces
- Zelensky has allowed anyone of any age to join the armed forces, and called on Europeans from other countries to come and join the fight
- Russia is deploying paratroopers to Chernobyl after capturing it on Thursday, Moscow said
- Ukraine reported ‘anomalous’ radiation levels at the plant amid fears nuclear storage was breached in fighting, but Moscow said readings are normal
- Russia claims to have destroyed 118 Ukrainian military sites in 30 hours of fighting
- PM Boris Johnson pledged more support is coming to Ukraine in the coming days
- Johnson shared a phone call with Zelensky on Friday morning
A S-300 surface-to-air missile system destroyed a Russian Sukhoi Su-25 jet and an unspecified helicopter at midnight, they said.
The Russian Air Force currently operates around 250 Su-25s of all variants, and they are considered a staple of Russian ground-attack regiments.
The news came shortly after Ukraine’s president warned that the Russians intend to take Kyiv overnight, urging his countrymen to resist the expected onslaught as Western officials say the city appears surrounded.
Volodymyr Zelensky, addressing the nation from a secret location in the capital, had a dire warning for his embattled and defiant people on Friday night.
‘Russia will try to break our resistance with all its might,’ he said, in a video posted to social media.
‘Tonight the enemy will begin storming us. We need to withstand them!’
Zelensky said that Chernihiv, Symy, Kharkiv, Donbas, and the south could also come under attack.
‘This night will be difficult, very difficult. But the morning will come,’ he said, according to The Kyiv Independent.
The 44-year-old referenced the Russian shelling of a kindergarten in Ukraine that killed at least one child and injured more, saying: ‘What kind of war is that? Were these children neo-Nazi? Or were they NATO soldiers?’
Vitali Klitschko, the former world champion heavyweight boxer who is now the mayor of Kyiv, said his city faces a ‘difficult night’.
The British Ministry of Defence said they believe Kyiv, home to 1.4 million people, is close to being encircled as the Russians advance from all sides.
Kyiv’s streets were empty on Friday night as people sought shelter in the city’s subway system. Many had fled, with buses and trains out of the city packed with people desperate to escape, and long lines of traffic choking the roads.
In Cherkasy, home to 270,000 people 120 miles south of Kyiv, video on social media showed people in a basement on Friday night, resolutely singing the national anthem as they awaited the onslaught.
In New York, on Friday night, a United Nations resolution that called on Moscow to halt its attack on Ukraine and withdraw its troops was vetoed by Russia – a permanent member of the Security Council. China, India and the UAE abstained.
Vladimir Putin, meanwhile, urged Ukraine’s troops on Friday to overthrow their own government and begin to negotiate with the Kremlin.
‘It looks like it will be easier for us to come to terms with you than with this gang of drug addicts and neo-Nazis,’ he said.