Ukraine said that it had shot down over a dozen drones launched by Russia in the early morning hours of Thursday.
Officials from Kyiv said that the 18 drones were part of 24 pre-dawn strikes across Ukraine. A number were aimed at Kyiv. All of them were destroyed along with an unspecified amount of missiles.
Officials in the capital stated: “The Russians attacked Kyiv with Shahed missiles and loitering munitions, most likely of the ballistic variety.”
According to Ukraine’s south military command, 15 Shahed drones have been fired at Odesa, a city on the Black Sea. Air defences destroyed 12 of them.
Three drones were used to strike a campus, but no one was injured.
The Ukrainian public broadcaster Suspline reported explosions also in the southern city Zaporizhzhia. The head of Zaporizhzhia’s regional army administration, Yuri Malashko confirmed that anti-aircraft defenses were working.
Since October, Russia has been regularly bombarding Ukraine. The latest attack comes less than 24 hrs after Kyiv announced that 21 people had died in a Russian strike against the city of Kherson.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy, Ukraine’s president, said that a supermarket and residential building were among those affected.
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This comes on the heels of the drone attack that took place in the early morning hours of Wednesday against the Russian President Vladimir Putin’s home.
Putin called the attack a terrorist act, blaming Ukraine. But Mr Zelenskyy stated: “We do not attack Putin or Moscow. We fight on our territory.”
The Kremlin claimed that the drones had been disabled before they were able to strike, but it threatened retaliation.
No reports have been made of any victims or damage.
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Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin’s spokesperson, told the Russian state-run news agency RIA Novosti at the time that Putin was working outside Moscow in Novo-Ogaryovo.
Peskov stated that the plans for Russia’s Victory Day Parade on 9 May will not be altered.
The holiday is a major celebration of the Soviet victory in World War II over Nazi Germany. It also gives Putin an opportunity to rally Russians around his “special military operations” in Ukraine.