Ukraine war: Wave of Russian air strikes reported across Ukraine

Emergency personnel work at a site of a Russian drone strike in Kharkiv last month
Image caption,Emergency personnel work at the site of a Russian air strike in Kharkiv last month

By George Wright

BBC News

Russia has launched a wave of attacks on several cities across Ukraine in a widespread overnight assault.

A nationwide air alert was in place as drones and missiles struck Kyiv, Odesa, Dnipropetrovsk, Kharkiv and Lviv in the early hours of Friday morning.

Across the country, at least 12 people have been killed and a number injured, reports say.

The overnight attacks came days after Ukraine struck a Russian warship in the occupied Crimean port of Feodosiya.

The attacks appear to have been far-reaching, striking cities across the country. Damage and casualties were reported from Lviv in the west, to Dnipro and Kharkiv in the east, to Odesa in the south – as well as in the capital Kyiv.

Ukraine’s Air Force spokesperson Yuriy Ihnat said Russia used hypersonic, cruise and ballistic missiles, including X-22 type, which are difficult to intercept. “We’ve never seen so many targets hit simultaneously,” he added.

Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said Russia had targeted social and critical infrastructure across Ukraine.

In Kyiv, two people died and 17 were injured in what local authorities called “one of the most massive airstrikes on the territory of Ukraine”. A metro station that was acting as an air raid shelter was struck, and fires broke out at several warehouses and residential buildings.

Kharkiv mayor Igor Terekhov said one person was killed and several injured in a series of strikes on the city which damaged a hospital and residential buildings.

The governor of Dnepropetrovsk region said that five people were killed in what he called a “tragic morning for the region”. Serhiy Lisak said that a shopping centre and a maternity hospital were targeted in the regional capital of Dnipro.

In Odesa, the city’s mayor reported that a building had caught fire after it was hit by debris from a downed drone. Local authorities said that two people were killed and 15 were injured, including two children aged six and eight.

In Zaporizhzhia, one person was killed after attacks on infrastructure, and 10 people were injured.

Regional authorities reported that one person was killed and three more were injured in Lviv.

The Russian attack comes a day after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky thanked the US for its last approved $250m (£195.7m) military aid package, which included air defence ammunition.

Writing on Telegram, Ukrainian presidential aid Andriy Yermak said “the world needs to see that we need more support and strength to stop this terror”.

Earlier this week, a Ukrainian attack on the Black Sea port of Fedosiya in Russian-occupied Crimea damaged the large landing ship Novocherkassk – a successful attack which lifted Ukrainian morale amid concerns that Western support is on the wane.

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