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Live Reporting

Edited by Nathan Williams and Emma Owen

All times stated are UK

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  1. Thanks for joining us

    Ukrainian police forensic experts search for evidence at a park where fighting took place between Ukrainian territorial forces and Russian forces at the beginning of the war, in Kherson, Ukraine November 16, 2022.
    Image caption: In newly-liberated Kherson, forensic experts search a park that saw fighting at the beginning of the war

    We'll be pausing our live coverage of the war in Ukraine shortly. Before then, here's a round-up of what happened today:

    • Nato chief Jens Stoltenberg said the explosion in Poland yesterday was likely to have been caused by Ukraine's air defence systems
    • His comments reiterated those of Polish President Andrzej Duda who said there was no sign that the missile that hit a village was an intentional attack on his country, rather it was "very likely" caused by Ukrainian air defences
    • An investigation is under way after two people were killed in the blast in Przewodow near the Ukrainian border
    • The Kremlin had insisted it had nothing to do with their deaths - and praised the US response as "restrained and professional" after President Joe Biden said it was unlikely that the missile was fired from Russia
    • In a statement, Western leaders at the G20 summit condemned Russia's "barbaric missile attacks" on Ukraine's cities and civilian infrastructure and offered their full support to neighbouring Poland
    • Meanwhile, millions of households across Ukraine remained without power after more than 90 Russian missiles were fired at Ukraine yesterday, Kyiv said

    Today's live coverage was brought to you by Elsa Maishman, Meryl Sebastian, Marita Moloney, James Fitzgerald, Emily McGarvey, Alys Davis and Sam Hancock. It was edited by Thomas Spender, Nathan Williams and Emma Owen.

  2. US military adviser considers Ukraine's chances of victory

    General Mark Milley

    Also at the Washington news conference we've just reported on is General Mark Milley.

    He's President Biden's top military adviser - and he's been speaking about Ukraine's chances of pushing Russia out.

    "The probability of a Ukrainian military victory - defined as kicking the Russians out of all of Ukraine to include what they claim as Crimea - the probability of that happening anytime soon is not high, militarily," he said.

    He goes on to say what is possible is a political solution, whereby the Russians withdraw.

    Russia "right now is on it's back", he said, before cautioning that it still had significant combat power inside of Ukraine despite suffering military setbacks.

  3. Ukraine has no choice but to defend itself - US defence secretary

    Lloyd Austin

    Following that briefing from Nato's Jens Stoltenberg, we've also been hearing from US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin in a briefing from Washington.

    Again repeating much of what we've already heard today, Austin says countries mustn't get ahead of the investigation into the missile on Polish soil.

    He says the US is still gathering information "but we've seen nothing that contradicts" Nato and Poland's suggestion that it was likely a Ukrainian air defence missile that went down.

    "This tragic and troubling incident is yet another reminder of the recklessness of Russia's war of choice," he tells the world's media, adding Ukraine has no choice but to defend itself.

    So much of the same, but a clear indication that Western leaders are treading a fine line between sharing what they believe are the preliminary facts - that it was likely a Ukrainian air defence missile that hit Poland - and continuing to voice their support for Ukraine.

  4. Nato is prepared for future accidental escalations - Stoltenberg

    Stoltenberg is asked what extra channels or safeguards are in place for talks between Nato or the US and Moscow to ensure that there can be no accidental escalation in the war.

    There are lines of communication between the US and Russia, he says, as well as Nato and other communication channels with Russia.

    "We have prepared for situations like this for many years in Nato and we need to ensure that when incidents or accidents happen, when there is a war going on in our neighbourhood, that they don't spiral out of control," Stoltenberg tells the BBC.

    "That's exactly what we ensured yesterday by reacting in a measured, calm but also firm way."

  5. Only Ukraine can decide when it's time to reach agreement - Stoltenberg

    More from Jens Stoltenberg's interview with the BBC, and he says Russian President Vladimir Putin made two big mistakes when he invaded Ukraine.

    One, he says, was to totally underestimate Ukraine. And the other was to underestimate Nato and its partners.

    Asked about negotiations between Ukraine and Russia and whether Nato feels a resolve must be reached as soon as possible, Stoltenberg says only that Nato continues to support Ukraine on the battlefield - referring to the arms and weaponry being sent to Kyiv.

    Pushed on whether he sees an agreement in the pipeline, the Nato chief says "that's for Ukraine to decide", adding it's an independent, sovereign nation. But he does say the military alliance will support Ukraine around the negotiating table.

  6. This war will likely end at the negotiating table - Stoltenberg

    Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg

    Asked what victory looks like and what he imagines Russia's exit strategy to be, Stoltenberg says he believes the war will end at the negotiating table.

    "We have to remember this is a war of aggression, where Russia has invaded another country," the Nato chief tells the BBC.

    "We all want peace and a negotiated solution. But at the same time we have to understand if Russia and President Putin stop fighting, and Ukraine stops fighting, then we will have peace.

    "If President Zelensky and Ukraine stop fighting, then Ukraine will cease to exist as an independent sovereign nation.

    "At some stage this war will most likely end at the negotiating table, but we know that the outcome of those negotiations are closely linked to the strength on the battlefield."

  7. Nato: Wars are dangerous, mistakes happen

    Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has been speaking to the BBC in the last few minutes.

    Repeating much of what we've heard already today, he says an investigation is ongoing into what caused the missile explosion in Poland, killing two people.

    Without assigning blame, he says "wars are dangerous and mistakes happen".

    Asked about Ukraine blaming Moscow for the incident, Stoltenberg - again repeating much of the rhetoric we've heard already - says whatever happened yesterday, Ukraine has a right to defend itself.

  8. The Poland Incident: Lessons learned

    Frank Gardner

    BBC News, Security Correspondent

    There are a number of lessons to emerge from Tuesday’s missile strike on Polish soil and it’s aftermath.

    The first and most obvious is that it’s best not to jump to conclusions before the facts are established. Poland and the US have both earned praise for their cautious reaction and truthful statements.

    Ukraine’s government, on the other hand, gave Moscow something of a PR victory by prematurely claiming it must have been a Russian missile when Nato believes it wasn’t. An easy mistake to make for a country coming under a barrage of more than 90 missiles that day but an embarrassing one for Kyiv.

    The second is that if this war is going to stretch on into 2023 and Russia retains the ability to fire long range missiles at the far west of Ukraine, then this is quite possibly going to happen again. Nato needs to be prepared for that.

    Thirdly, as stocks of high-precision munitions run low, more and more crude weapons are likely to be deployed, with the attendant risk that they will miss their target.

  9. Analysis

    Questions remain about missile fragments landing in Poland

    Paul Adams

    BBC Diplomatic correspondent

    The debris, which locals claim to be that of a missile, is pictured at the site of an explosion in Przewodow, a village in eastern Poland near the border with Ukrain
    Image caption: Debris was found, which locals claim belongs to a missile, at the explosion site in Przewodow near the Polish border with Ukraine

    News of an explosion in Poland caused a shudder of fear throughout the western alliance.

    Was this the moment, long dreaded, when Nato finally found itself in direct confrontation with Russia?

    Pretty quickly, though, experts started examining photos of the wreckage from Poland. Most of them agreed they looked like parts of a Russian-made S-300 air defence missile.

    Which meant that it was likely Ukraine had fired it, as it frantically sought to protect its cities from yet another massive Russian assault from the air.

    The S-300 is a surface to air missile, introduced in the 1970s and still widely used throughout the countries of the old Soviet Union, including Ukraine.

    While most Nato members now seem to agree about the fragments recovered at the scene, questions still remain about how they got there.

    Was this the result of a successful interception somewhere over the skies over western Ukraine, or did one of its air defence missiles go astray?

    The secretary of Ukraine’s National Security Council, Oleksiy Danilov, said his government was ready to hand over evidence that this was actually a Russian missile. Ukraine, he said, was waiting for its allies to share their evidence.

    It’s an awkward moment: last night, Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, said the idea that a Ukrainian missile had caused death and destruction in Poland was a Russian conspiracy theory.

    But western officials are keen to stress that none of this was Ukraine’s fault.

  10. Why did Russia invade Ukraine and has Putin's war failed?

    Paul Kirby

    Europe digital editor

    Vladimir Putin addressed crowds in Moscow, with the words "Together forever" at the top of the screen

    When Vladimir Putin sent up to 200,000 soldiers into Ukraine on 24 February, he thought he could sweep into the capital Kyiv in a matter of days and depose the government.

    Russian forces quickly captured big stretches of territory but failed to encircle Kyiv.

    Yet in the coming months they were forced into a series of humiliating retreats, first in the north and now in the south. To date, they have lost more than half the territory seized at the start of the invasion.

    Sending troops into Ukraine from the north, south and east on 24 February, he told the Russian people his goal was to "demilitarise and de-Nazify Ukraine".

    His declared aim was to protect people subjected to what he called eight years of bullying and genocide by Ukraine's government - claims which have no basis in evidence.

    It was framed as an attempt at preventing Nato from gaining a foothold in Ukraine. Another objective was soon added: ensuring Ukraine's neutral status.

    Has the invasion failed?

    By most measures, Russia's war is failing but it still controls all the territory seized in 2014, as well as the coastal corridor from Crimea to the Russian border.

    President Putin's partial mobilisation is yet to make a substantial difference on the ground.

    And if the Russian leader's aim really was to push Nato back, that too has failed because Sweden and Finland have applied to join, alarmed by Moscow's military threat.

    Read more about how Putin's ambitions have diminished.

  11. Polish parliament holds minute's silence for missile victims

    Poland's Sejm - or lower house of parliament - has held a minute's silence in memory of the two Polish citizens who died after a missile hit the village of Przewodow yesterday.

    Authorities have not officially identified the two victims. Local media reports say they were two men.

    Earlier, Nato's Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said the missile hit was likely to have been caused by Ukraine's air defence systems.

    View more on twitter
  12. Kyiv residents adjust daily routines as darkness falls

    A person walks along a Kyiv street without power, as much of Ukraine is without electricity following yesterday's missile attacks
    Image caption: Much of Kyiv is without electricity after yesterday's strikes by Russia

    Between two and four million households - depending on the time of day - remain without power following yesterday's strikes on Ukraine, according to the authorities.

    People have been warned to prepare for prolonged restrictions after Russia launched a barrage of missiles on Ukraine, damaging energy infrastructure.

    Iryna Nemyovch is with her parents and grandparents in the suburbs of Kyiv. She says the power shortages are becoming worse and they are having to adjust the way they live.

    "So yesterday the power was shut off at noon and it came back at 3am, and five hours later at 8am, it was off again.

    "We were told that we were not going to have electricity for two to four hours, but currently we don't have it for 12 hours a day.

    "For half of the day you cannot do anything. We have to cook at night, to use washing machines and other electrical devices at night. So you have to adjust your daily routine a lot," se says.

  13. Ukraine extends martial law by three months

    President Zelensky speaks to a line of Ukrainian soldiers - a scene captured by photographers
    Image caption: President Zelensky speaks to Ukrainian soldiers in the recaptured city of Kherson earlier this week

    A little look at what's happening in Ukraine itself now. Martial law has just been extended by another 90 days.

    This means military authorities remain in charge until at least 19 February 2023 as an emergency measure. Civilian rule is suspended while the country tries to defend itself against the Russian invasion.

    Also staying in place is a law on general mobilisation - which aims to get people signing up to fight.

    President Volodymyr Zelensky's decrees to were supported by the overwhelming majority of lawmakers.

  14. Quiet country roads suddenly a hive of military activity

    Dan Johnson

    Reporting from Poland

    Jevhen Kozak

    Jevhen Kozak lives just a few hundred metres from the farm near Poland's border with Ukraine where a missile landed last night.

    He told the BBC that he knew the two people who had died - a farmer and a man who worked in the village shop, which he described as the "centre of the community".

    Another resident told news agencies that the victims were men who worked at a local grain-drying facility. Local media says one man was about 60 years old and the other, 62.

    Some Polish outlets have named the men but government officials are yet to confirm their identities.

    We spoke to Jevhen not far from the cordon, which was constantly manned by police.

    As the day went on several convoys of military vehicles wove through the quiet country roads to the site. Soldiers marched past, while police officers searched for any evidence in nearby fields.

    A local primary school carried on as normal while press, police and the army congregated outside.

    Three soldiers walking near the site of an explosion in a Polish village on Tuesday night
    Image caption: Soldiers have assembled near the blast site - as have police and members of the press
  15. 'Hopefully this is a one-off incident' - Polish MEP

    A Polish MEP has said while the missile hit on his country does not seem to be a deliberate Russian provocation, the risk of Russia missing its targets and hitting Poland in the future can't be ruled out.

    Rodoslaw Sikorski, who was Poland's Minister of Foreign Affairs between 2007 and 2014, says he remains very concerned following yesterday's incident.

    "The Russians have been missing their targets all along and they are now rocketing and bombing western Ukraine, which is very close to the Polish border. So we can't eliminate the risk of such actions in the future."

    He added: "Remember, the main story is this huge Russian attack on Ukrainian cities, they really are terrorising the civilian population and that's a war crime.

    "So even if the Ukrainian weapon misfired, the responsibility for this is borne by the aggressor."

  16. 'Only Poland and US can grant Ukraine access to blast site'

    Polish President Andrzej Duda speaks during a press conference after a meeting of the Government Committee for National Defence and Defence Affairs at the National Security Bureau hedquarters in Warsaw
    Image caption: Duda has been speaking to reporters off and on since the incident yesterday

    Poland has now responded to Ukraine's calls to be granted "immediate access" to the site of yesterday's missile explosion.

    Andrzej Duda, the Polish president, said both his country and the US - who are carrying out the investigation into what happened yesterday - would need to approve Ukraine's involvement.

    "The proceedings are conducted by Polish and American experts," Andrzej Duda told a news conference this afternoon, "and if anyone was to be allowed to take part in these proceedings, it would need at least the agreement of both parties."

  17. UK will not rush to judgement, says foreign secretary

    The UK will provide any support needed in the effort to investigate the missile strike at the Polish border with Ukraine, the foreign secretary has said.

    James Cleverly told Parliament full details of the circumstances of a missile which hit Poland yesterday are not yet known and Britain will not rush to judgement.

    Poland and Nato have said the missile was likely fired by Ukraine's air defences rather than a deliberate Russian strike.

    "Our response will always be led by the facts," Cleverly said.

    "But the House should be in no doubt that the only reason why missiles are flying through European skies and exploding in European villages is because of Russia's barbaric invasion of Ukraine."

  18. Ukraine demands access to blast site in Poland

    Investigators near the blast site today
    Image caption: Investigators near the blast site today

    We reported earlier that Ukraine had requested immediate access to the site of an explosion in Poland, thought to have been caused erroneously by a missile. We've got more on that now.

    "Ukraine requests immediate access to the site of the explosion," the secretary of Ukraine's national security and defence council, Oleksiy Danilov, writes on Twitter.

    He also says Kyiv is ready to hand over evidence of its allegations that Russia was responsible for the hit, following Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's accusations against Moscow.

    The Kremlin has denied having anything to do with the blast. Western leaders have been resistant to blame Moscow, with US President Joe Biden going as far as saying it was unlikely that the missile came from Russia.

    In his tweet, Danilov also calls for Ukraine's allies to provide the information that has led some to conclude that it was a Ukrainian air defence missile that killed two people.

    The request for access is yet to be granted.

  19. US defence secretary says systems are accurate

    A view shows a crater after an explosion in Przewodow, a village in eastern Poland near the border with Ukraine
    Image caption: An explosion in the Polish village of Przewodow left a sizeable crater

    We're hearing more from the US now, where American Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin has been speaking about the air defence systems the US has supplied to Ukraine since the war with Russia began.

    During a routine meeting of defence ministers, Austin is quoted by Reuters news agency as saying the US has provided Ukraine with a number of what are called NASAMS air defence systems.

    And they've had a 100% success rate in Ukraine intercepting Russian missiles, he reportedly adds.

    Careful not to assign blame, Austin repeated assurances issued by other US officials - and fellow Nato countries - that Washington would work with Poland to gather more information on the explosion in Poland yesterday.

  20. Why were people so concerned by Poland missile strike?

    The deadly missile strike in Poland sparked major concern across the West.

    It was the first time during the Ukraine war that a Nato country had been hit, and it had the potential to lead to devastating consequences.

    That's because the fundamental principle of Nato is that an attack on one member country is considered an attack on all – as outlined in Article 5 of the treaty.

    If the missiles which hit Poland had been fired by Russia it could have been considered an armed attack, even if the intended target had been Ukraine.

    Retaliation from the rest of Nato wouldn’t have been automatic, but countries would have been bound by the treaty to take whatever action they deemed "necessary" to support Poland.

    In the most extreme scenario, this could have led to a Nato attack on Russia and an almost unprecedented escalation of the war.

    Article 5 has only been triggered once before - on behalf of the US after 9/11.

    Volodymyr Zelensky and Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in 2021
    Image caption: Volodymyr Zelensky and Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in 2021