Rain of missiles and drones. Large explosions and rattling windows woke many residents of Dnipro and other major cities in Ukraine on Friday as 674 days of war passed. This morning, Russia launched a massive combined attack with drones and various types of missiles against kyiv, Kharkov, Odessa, Zaporozhye, Lviv and Dnipro; large cities far from the front line where citizens have settled into a new normal. The attack, one of the largest since the Kremlin launched its full-scale invasion, comes three days after Ukraine destroyed a Russian warship in the occupied Crimea port of Feodosia, another severe blow to the Russian navy. There are at least 10 dead and dozens injured across the country. President Volodymyr Zelensky estimated the number of missiles launched by Moscow on Ukrainian territory at 110, in addition to drones. In total, 150 projectiles. Air defenses intercepted most of them, according to the president.
Following the wave of attacks, Poland, a member of NATO and the European Union, reported that an “unidentified aerial object” had entered its airspace from the border with Ukraine. “From the moment he crossed the border until the signal disappeared, he was observed by the radars of the air defense system,” the operational command of the Polish army said on social media. Warsaw mobilized forces and resources following the event and authorities are searching for the object near the town of Hrubieszow in southern Poland, according to TV Republika. In November 2022, a Ukrainian air defense missile attempting to intercept a Russian attack fell in Poland and killed two people in the town of Przewodów.
The Kremlin has been striking Ukrainian territory for several hours with hypersonic, cruise and ballistic missiles, including the X-22, which are extremely difficult to intercept, according to Ukrainian Air Force spokesperson Yuriy Ihnat on Ukrainian television. . “We have never seen so many places attacked simultaneously,” Ihnat added. If Zelensky’s account is confirmed, this Friday’s bombing of six major cities would be the largest of its kind since Russia launched the full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022. The more powerful precedent was recorded in November 2022, when Moscow forces launched 96 missiles into Ukrainian territory. Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said Russia had targeted civilian and essential infrastructure.
In Dnipro, one of the bombings damaged a shopping center, a maternity ward, an apartment building and several houses. There are at least five dead and more than a dozen injured, according to the town hall.
This Friday’s Russian attack covered almost all of Ukraine, from Kharkiv – before the full-scale war, Ukraine’s second most populous city – to the east and less than 40 kilometers from Russia, to Lviv in the west, 70 kilometers away. from Poland. In Kharkiv, the attack caused damage to a hospital and several apartment buildings, according to the local government.
In Kiev, the capital, seven people were injured by the remains of projectiles intercepted by Ukrainian air defense, according to the mayor, Vitali Klitschko, who assures that there are three people trapped in the rubble of a warehouse hit by the bombing raid. Klitschko claimed on his Telegram channel that a metro station that served as a bomb shelter had also been attacked.
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In Lviv, far from the front and considered one of the safest cities, one person died and several were injured following this morning’s attacks, according to local authorities. In the port city of Odessa, two people were killed and at least 15 injured, including children, following bombings that hit apartment buildings.
Ukraine has recently significantly improved its air defense thanks to Western assistance, but gaps remain. Especially vulnerable to combined barrage of missiles and drones. This Friday’s Russian attack comes as the invaded country prepares to celebrate the New Year, one of the great traditional holidays, almost more important than Christmas. This also comes after the Russian landing ship was destroyed by a Ukrainian air offensive. Novocherkasskin occupied Crimea, yet another blow to the Russian navy, and a day later, the United States approved another military aid program to Kiev worth around 200 million euros including defense equipment air, ammunition and anti-tank weapons.
This plan from Washington is the last available for Ukraine until Congress approves more, which is not easy since negotiations to approve more aid are at an impasse. Progress appears stalled on the battlefield and the war has become a struggle for position after the Ukrainian counter-offensive failed to achieve its desired objectives.
While waiting to receive more military aid from its allies, the Zelensky government has warned the United States and the EU that if it does not receive the promised funds, it could be forced to stop paying two million civil servants and more than a million people who receive military aid. social benefits, as reported by EL PAÍS. kyiv is also demanding a new donor conference.
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