Volodymyr Dubrovsliy, a disabled pensioner, lights candles in his house after living without electricity for more than four months in Kupiansk, Kharkiv region, Ukraine, Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2022. (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka)
KYIV, Ukraine — Several regions of Ukraine, including its capital, were facing a massive Russian missile attack Thursday morning, the latest in a series targeting national infrastructure.
Air raid sirens rang out across the country. Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, said Russia launched over 120 missiles.
In Kyiv, air defense systems were activated to fend off the ongoing missile attack, according to the regional administration. Sounds of explosions were heard in the city.
Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov said numerous explosions took place in Ukraine’s second-largest city. Explosions were also heard in the city of Lviv near the border with Poland, according to Mayor Andriy Sadovyi.
Ukrainian authorities in several regions said some incoming Russian missiles were intercepted.
The governor of southern Ukraine’s Mykolaiv province, Vitaliy Kim, said five missiles were shot down over the Black Sea. The Ukrainian military’s command North said two were downed over the Sumy region, located on the border with Russia in the country’s northeast.
Fragments from downed Russian missiles damaged two private buildings in the Darnytskyi district of Kyiv, the city administration said. An industrial facility and a playground in neighborhoods located across the Dnieper River also were damaged, city officials said. No casualties were immediately reported.
The widespread attack was the latest in a series of Russian strikes targeting vital infrastructure across Ukraine. Moscow has launched such attacks on weekly basis since October, causing widespread blackouts and cutoffs to water supplies.
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko warned Thursday that there could be power outages in the capital, asking people to stockpile water and to charge their electronic devices.
After earlier attacks, the Ukrainian military reported shooting down incoming Russian missiles and explosive drones, but some still reached their targets, increasing the suffering of the population amid freezing temperatures.
As the latest wave of Russian strikes began Thursday, authorities in the Dnipro, Odesa and Kryvyi Rih regions said they switched off electricity to minimize the damage to critical infrastructure facilities if they were hit.
Earlier this month, the United States agreed to give a Patriot missile battery to Ukraine to boost the country’s defense. The U.S. and other allies also pledged to provide energy-related equipment to help Ukraine withstand the attacks on its infrastructure.
Podolyak, an adviser to Zelenskyy, said that Russia was aiming to “destroy critical infrastructure and kill civilians en masse.”
“We’re waiting for further proposals from ‘peacekeepers’ about ‘peaceful settlement,’ ‘security guarantees for RF’ and undesirability of provocations,” Podolyak wrote on Twitter, a sarcastic reference to statements from some in the West who urged Ukraine to seek a political settlement of the conflict.
BUDAPEST, Hungary — Sweden's government should “act differently” if it wants to clinch Turkish support for its bid to join NATO, Hungary's foreign minister said Tuesday, adding that a recent Quran-burning protest outside the Turkish embassy in Stockholm was “unacceptable.
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