April 4, 2022 Russia-Ukraine news

By Aditi Sangal, Melissa Macaya, Lauren Said-Moorhouse, Travis Caldwell, Helen Regan, Ben Church, Jason Kurtz and Meg Wagner, CNN

Updated 2:01 a.m. ET, April 5, 2022
73 Posts
Sort byDropdown arrow
12:01 a.m. ET, April 5, 2022

Our live coverage of the war in Ukraine has moved here.

10:57 p.m. ET, April 4, 2022

Fleeing Ukraine alone, resourceful teenager persuades Hungarian school to take her in

From CNN's Laura Dolan and Matt Rivers

It’s a normal school day for students at the Korosi Baptist High School in Budapest, Hungary – studying, presenting classwork, laughing with friends.

Among them is 17-year-old Alla Renska, a tall girl with long blonde hair, carrying her hot pink backpack from class to class.

But Renska is no ordinary student and she is no longer living an ordinary life – or the life she envisioned just weeks ago.

Renska was studying for college exams in her home city of Kyiv with plans to become an English and Turkish translator. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine changed all that.

It was while she was fleeing her home on a train to Hungary, she decided to write an email to Korosi Baptist High School, one of the country's top schools.

She wrote about the war and explained what had happened to her. She also told them of her accomplishments.

Renska ended her email with a plea, “I really want to go to school and continue studying!!! I kindly ask you to help me.”

And help they did.

Read the full story here:

10:16 p.m. ET, April 4, 2022

US tested hypersonic missile in mid-March but kept it quiet to avoid escalating tensions with Russia

From CNN's Oren Liebermann

The US successfully tested a hypersonic missile in mid-March but kept it quiet for two weeks to avoid escalating tensions with Russia as US President Joe Biden was about to travel to Europe, according to a defense official familiar with the matter.

The Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC) was launched from a B-52 bomber off the west coast, the official said, in the first successful test of the Lockheed Martin version of the system.

The test came days after Russia said it used its own hypersonic missile during the invasion of Ukraine, claiming it targeted an ammunition warehouse in western Ukraine.

US officials downplayed the significance of the Russian use of their hypersonic Kinzhal missile. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said he did not view it as “some sort of game changer” after the Russians announced the missile launch.

At the time of the US test, Biden was preparing for a visit to NATO allies in Europe, including a stop in Poland where he met with Ukraine’s foreign minister and defense minister.

Read the full story:

2:01 a.m. ET, April 5, 2022

Satellite images show bodies laying in street while Bucha was under Russian control

From CNN's Paul P. Murphy

Satellite images show the bodies have been on the street in southern Bucha, since at least March 18.
Satellite images show the bodies have been on the street in southern Bucha, since at least March 18. (Satellite image ©2022MaxarTechnologies)

New satellite images from Maxar Technologies show the bodies of dead civilians in Bucha had been laying in the street for weeks, including when the town was under Russian control.

The New York Times first published the images on Monday.

Disturbing video showing the bodies in Bucha was geolocated, authenticated and reported on by CNN on Friday. It came to light the same day Ukraine declared the town liberated from Russian troops.

Objects seen in the street on the satellite images match the exact locations that bodies are seen in the street in the video.
Objects seen in the street on the satellite images match the exact locations that bodies are seen in the street in the video. (Satellite image ©2022MaxarTechnologies/From Facebook/CNN illustration)

In response to the footage of Bucha on Saturday, the Russian Defense Ministry claimed the video was "fake" and "staged." It said the video, photos, and the allegations of war crimes were "another provocation."

"During the time the settlement was under the control of the Russian armed forces, not a single local resident suffered from any violent actions," the ministry said.

But the satellite images refute that claim from the Russians: Objects seen in Yablunska street on the satellite images match the exact locations that bodies are seen in the street in the video. The satellite images show the bodies were on the street in southern Bucha since at least March 18, when Russia was in control of the town. Russia held Bucha until March 31.

CNN has reached out to the Russian Defense Ministry for comment.

9:28 p.m. ET, April 4, 2022

Ukraine's deputy prime minister: If we don't stop Putin, "this is only the beginning of those atrocities"

From CNN's Jason Kurtz


A group of eleven Ukrainian city mayors continue to be held captive by Russian forces, Ukraine's deputy prime minister reiterated on Monday.

“This is absolutely true. We know that all of the city mayors, they are in captivity, they're being held hostage by Russians, they are unfortunately are not giving them back to us,” Iryna Vereshchuk told CNN’s Erin Burnett on Monday.

“Unfortunately, so far, we have not been able to get in touch, or to free any other city mayors, and we don't even know, we think that some of them were killed," she said, speaking via a translator.

On Sunday, in a message posted to social media, Vereshchuk said that 11 local mayors from Kyiv, Kherson, Mykolaiv and the Donetsk regions "are in Russian captivity." CNN could not independently verify those claims. Russian forces have detained local government officials in a number of instances around Ukraine.

As photos of civilian bodies lining a street in Bucha have quickly become the indelible images of the conflict, Vereshchuk feared further violence.

“If we do not stop Putin today, together, this is only the beginning of those atrocities that we will reveal later on. Because as we are talking now with you, there are ... more than 100,000 civilians, women, children, elderly, who are dying in the city of Mariupol at the moment,” she said.  

“People are dying, they are dying of hunger, thirst, severe wounds, airstrikes, thousands of them are being killed. It is a genocide, against the Ukrainian civilians. And Putin, he realizes that he cannot stop the Ukrainian army, and that’s why he has another tactic. He is torturing and raping Ukrainian civilians, women, and this is what's his so-called second army is doing. They are fighting against the civilians, and we seem to just be watching powerless against them.”

7:45 p.m. ET, April 4, 2022

Zelensky will address UN Security Council Tuesday morning

From CNN’s Richard Roth

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will address the United Nations Security Council Tuesday morning, a spokesperson for the president of the Security Council confirmed to CNN. 

The address will take place during the council’s 10 a.m. ET briefing on Ukraine, Mungo Woodifield confirmed to CNN.

7:38 p.m. ET, April 4, 2022

Zelensky warns civilian casualties may be higher in other liberated cities after Bucha

From CNN’s Mitchell McCluskey

(Office of the President of Ukraine/Facebook)
(Office of the President of Ukraine/Facebook)

The number of civilian casualties may be much higher in Borodyanka and other liberated Ukrainian cities than Bucha, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said in a video address on Monday. 

“There is already information that the number of victims of the occupiers may be even higher in Borodyanka and some other liberated cities. In many villages of the liberated districts of the Kyiv, Chernihiv and Sumy regions, the occupiers did things that the locals had not seen even during the Nazi occupation 80 years ago. The occupiers will definitely bear responsibility for this,” Zelensky said.

In Bucha, Zelensky said there were more than 300 people killed, but that the total number of casualties will likely increase as the whole city is checked.  

Zelensky underscored the importance of journalists documenting the aftermath in liberated Ukrainian cities. 

“We provide maximum access for journalists to Bucha and other liberated cities of Ukraine. For hundreds of journalists from around the world. And we are interested in having thousands of journalists there. As many as possible! For the world to see what Russia has done,” he said. 

Zelensky cautioned that Russia will try to cover up the traces of violence committed in Bucha and other cities. 

“They are trying to distort the facts. But, as then, they will not succeed. They will not be able to deceive the whole world,” Zelensky said. 

Zelensky repeated his plea to be sent more weapons to fight Russian forces.

“I emphasize once again: Ukraine must get all the necessary weapons to drive the occupiers out of our land as soon as possible, to liberate our cities. And if we had already got what we needed - all these planes, tanks, artillery, anti-missile and anti-ship weapons, we could have saved thousands of people,” he said. 

7:17 p.m. ET, April 4, 2022

Former Ukrainian Prime Minister: "Putin will lose this war"

From CNN's Jason Kurtz

Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk says the ongoing conflict in Ukraine is the most-dramatic event since World war II.

“This is not just a disaster. Everything that [Russian President Vladimir] Putin and his cronies and his soldiers so-called did to Ukrainian people, this is war crimes and crimes against humanity,” Yatsenyuk told CNN’s Jake Tapper.

The biggest question, Yatsenyuk said, is what ultimately happens to Putin and his army.

“How to bring to justice personally Putin and every single commander in the chain, and every soldier who committed these atrocities against the Ukrainian people,” he detailed.

Though the Russian president currently appears to be acting free of any recourse, Yatsenyuk predicted Putin’s reign will end in failure.  

“I still believe that Putin will lose this war … This is the war against the free world. This is the war against actually every human being. This is the war against freedom,” he told Tapper. “He is to lose this war but we need to prepare right now … I believe we need to urgently launch a kind of joint-investigative group in order to be prepared to bring to justice Putin, and to see Putin sitting behind the bars.”

6:39 p.m. ET, April 4, 2022

Kosovo prime minister says Russia is "definitely" committing war crimes

From CNN's Bianca Nobilo, Jessie Gretener and Jaya Sharma


Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti said in an interview with CNN on Monday that Russia is "definitely" committing war crimes in Ukraine.

"These horrible crimes that we all see happening in Eastern Ukraine are definitely war crimes, and it is up to investigators to also prove crimes against humanity and genocide," Kurti said while speaking to CNN's Bianca Nobilo.

"I believe that [the] Kremlin has been ordering all of this war machinery into these crimes against unarmed civilians," Kurti said, adding that Vladimir Putin should face an international tribunal. 

The prime minister also said Kosovo is bolstering its defense budget and capabilities in case of Russian interference or spillover conflict in the Western Balkans.