Russia launched its second major barrage of missiles at Ukraine in recent days early Monday, damaging buildings and injuring at least 34 people in the eastern city of Pavlohrad but missing Kiev, authorities said.
The Air raid sirens began sounding in the capital around 3:45 a.m.followed by the sounds of explosions as Ukrainian defense systems intercepted the missiles.
Eighteen cruise missiles they were fired in total from the Murmansk region and the Caspian region, and 15 of them were intercepted, Ukrainian Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Valerii Zaluzhnyi said.
The head of the kyiv city administration, Serhii Popko, said that all the missiles fired at the city were shot down, as well as some drones. He did not provide further details, but said more information would be available at a later date.
The attack follows Friday’s launch of more than 20 cruise missiles and two explosive drones into Ukraine, the first to hit Kiev in almost two months.
In that attack, Russian missiles hit an apartment building in Uman, a city about 215 kilometers (135 miles) south of kyiv, killing 21 people, including three children.
In it monday attackthe missiles hit Pavlohrad, in the eastern Dnipropetrovsk region, and injured 34 people, including five childrenaccording to Serhii Lysak, the region’s top official.
Seven missiles fired into the city and “some were intercepted,” but others hit an industrial facility, causing a fire, and a residential neighborhood where 19 apartment buildings, 25 homes, six schools and five businesses were damaged, it said.
The missiles also hit three other areas in the region, damaging residential buildings and a school, it said.
Moscow has frequently launched long-range missile attacks during the 14-month war, often hitting civilian areas indiscriminately.
Ukraine recently received US-made Patriot missiles, which provide enhanced anti-missile defensesbut it was not clear if any of them were used to try to stop the attack on Monday morning.
Ukraine has also been building up its mechanized brigades with armor provided by its Western allies, who have also been training Ukrainian troops and sending in ammunition, as kyiv prepares for an expected counteroffensive this spring.
On Saturday, two Ukrainian drones attacked a Russian oil depot in Crimea in the latest attack on the annexed peninsula as Ukraine prepares for its counter-offensive.
Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in an interview last week that his country would seek to recapture the peninsula annexed by Russia in 2014 in the next counteroffensive.
(with information from AP)
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