The United States Embassy in Ukraine has released a statement in which it has asked all Americans in the country to leave immediately. According to the statement, the US Department of State has information that Russia is planning a series of strikes in Ukraine that might target “civilian infrastructure and government facilities.” The statement urges Americans “to depart Ukraine now using privately available ground transportation options if it is safe to do so”.

Also Read| Serbia warns it will protect Kosovo Serbs if NATO doesn’t

The statement has also provided instructions on what to do if someone is called in the middle of firefighting or airstrikes. People are recommended to seek cover if they hear sirens or a loud explosion. If people are inside a building, they should quickly go to the ground floor and stay away from walls that have openings like windows or doors. The instructions further add, “If you are outdoors, immediately seek cover in a hardened structure; if that is not possible, lie down and cover your head with your hands”. The Embassy has warned US citizens that the situation in Ukraine is still “highly volatile” and may deteriorate without any prior warning.

In the statement, the US Embassy has also asked its citizens in Ukraine to get a COVID vaccine so that their travels are not hampered. It further reminded people of keeping a close tab on proceedings via social media as well as local and international news outlets.

Also Read| Alexander Dugin breaks down at the scene of daughter’s car explosion: Watch

Notably, in accordance with the increased threat of attack, Independence Day festivities in Kyiv were banned. Ukraine’s Prime Minister Volodymyr Zelensky had also sent out a warning before Independence Day on August 24, saying that he feared Moscow could attempt “something particularly ugly” during this period.

On August 22, Moscow’s Federal Security Service accused Ukraine of plotting the killing of Darya Dugina, the daughter of a Russian nationalist ideologue. Russian President Vladimir Putin had called the alleged assassination “evil”.