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Ukraine supporters in Philadelphia call for no-fly zone

Group supporting Ukraine gathers at City Hall
Group supporting Ukraine gathers at City Hall 02:41

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- G7 leaders on Tuesday will convene an emergency meeting after Russia targeted civilian areas throughout Ukraine. More than 80 Russian missile strikes rocked major cities. Ukrainian officials say at least 14 people were killed.

Russian President Vladimir Putin says the attacks were in response to the destruction of a key bridge linking Russia to Crimea over the weekend.

Ukrainian Americans and their supporters in our area continue to call for an end to the violence.

More than seven months after Putin invaded Ukraine, the war rages on.

A group supporting Ukraine's efforts in the fight gathered Monday night at City Hall to call for increased action from the American government and increased pressure, to that end, from American citizens.

Just as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has urged NATO to enact a no-fly zone over Ukraine so too did those assembled at City Hall Monday. The umbrellas they carried were symbolic of their wishes to have Ukraine protected from the sky meaning attacks from Russian forces.

"Presiden [Joe] Biden and the administration are promising more help," Ulana Mazurkevich said, "but we need an iron-clad dome. We need an umbrella. That is why we are standing here with our blue and yellow umbrellas to symbolize we want an umbrella over Ukraine."

Speaking of President Biden, he issued a statement regarding Russia's brutal attacks on Monday. It reads, in part, "These attacks killed and injured civilians and destroyed targets with no military purpose. They once again demonstrate the utter brutality of Mr. Putin's illegal war on the Ukrainian people."

Meanwhile, back at City Hall, CBS Philadelphia heard concern over what could be a domino effect if Putin isn't stopped in Ukraine.

"We have to put a stop to this bully," Mazurkevich said. "Bullies have to be stopped."

And that's where some believe you at home can help.

"I would say to remember Ukraine in your hearts and help where you can," Karen Golovko said.

The United States has committed over $16 billion in security assistance to Ukraine since the start of the war in late February. 

As for a no-fly zone? The U.S. Is extremely reticent to enact one because it would literally mean engaging Russia militarily and the prospect of war between the two countries on earth with the vast majority of the planet's nuclear weapons.

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