G7 to back Ukraine 'for as long as it takes'

Leaders of the G7 group of rich nations have said they will back Ukraine for "as long as it takes" in the wake of Monday's major Russian missile strikes, News.az reports citing UNIAN.

The group, which met for emergency virtual talks, said it would keep on giving military and humanitarian aid.

Nato also said it would stand with Ukraine for as long as necessary.

At least 19 people were killed and scores more injured, as Russian missiles hit regions across Ukraine, including central Kyiv.

Strikes continued into Tuesday, with civilians advised to stay in air raid shelters.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said the attacks were in retaliation for a strike on a key bridge linking Russia with occupied Crimea, for which he blamed Ukraine.

Western leaders were quick to condemn the Russian escalation, and the G7 on Tuesday reiterated its commitment to Ukraine.

"We will continue to provide financial, humanitarian, military, diplomatic and legal support and will stand firmly with Ukraine for as long as it takes," the group said in a statement.

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