- Kyiv's mayor said city will use its subway system as a giant bomb shelter if Russia invades Ukraine.
- Mayor Vitali Klitschko also said "we are ready to defend our city" if necessary.
- His remarks come as the US and its allies try to negotiate with Putin amid the threat of war.
- For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.
The mayor of Kyiv said that Ukraine's capital city will use its subway system as a giant bomb shelter if Russia launches an invasion.
"The key bomb shelter in the city of Kyiv will also be the Kyiv subway, which, in the event of — God forbid — zero hour, will be ready to accommodate people who can take shelter in case of a possible attack," Mayor Vitali Klitschko said in an interview with the Current Time television network on Tuesday.
Klitschko also said bomb shelters will be provided near "certain buildings," but did not clarify exactly which ones.
He said that the task at hand is ensuring that the city's "critical infrastructure" works and that there is no disruption to the supply of water, heat, and electricity.
"When it comes to [Kyiv's] defence, we are now creating territorial defence brigades, where volunteers with a military background sign up and sign contracts," he said.
Klitschko added: "If necessary, we are ready to defend our city."
His remarks come as the US and its allies are at an impasse in negotiations with the Kremlin as Russian forces gather along the Ukrainian border, sparking fears of an imminent invasion.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken urged US citizens in Ukraine on Wednesday to "strongly consider leaving" the country as tensions continue to rise.
"Our message now for any Americans in Ukraine is to strongly consider leaving," Blinken said at a press conference.
In coordination with its allies, the US placed 8,500 troops on heightened alert for potential deployment to eastern Europe as NATO sent ships and fighter jets to the region.