Russia launched the most massive missile attack since the invasion of Ukraine began

Russia yesterday launched an airstrike on Ukraine, the most massive since the invasion of February 24, 2022, which targeted schools, a maternity hospital, shopping malls and apartment blocks, killing at least 18 people and injuring more than a hundred throughout the country.

The attacks, in which a Russian missile also crossed Polish airspace, sparked international condemnation and calls for military support for Ukraine, including from President Joe Biden to the US Congress, which has been fighting invading Russian troops for almost two years.

“Today Russia hit us with almost everything it has in its arsenal,” said President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The Ukrainian military estimated that Russia had fired 158 missiles and drones at Ukraine and 114 of them had been destroyed. Air Force spokesman Yuriy Ignat said this was a “record number” of missiles and “the most massive missile attack” of the war, excluding the early days of constant bombing.

Russia attempted to overwhelm Ukraine’s air defenses in most major cities, launching the wave of Shahed attack drones followed by missiles of numerous types, fired from aircraft and from Russian-controlled territory. Police reported “18 civilians killed and 132 wounded” in regions near and far from the front, a figure that was expected to rise.

The Russian military said it had “carried out fifty group attacks and one mass attack” against military facilities in Ukraine over the past week, adding that “all targets were hit.”

Damage. The violated maternity ward is “seriously damaged.” The attacks targeted at least six Ukrainian regions, including Kharkiv in the northeast, Lviv in the west, Dnipro in the east and Odessa in the south. In the capital kyiv, seven people were killed, according to Mayor Vitali Klitschko, and the Lukyanivska metro station building, located near the Artyom arms factory, was damaged and Russia said it had been targeted at the beginning of the war. .

According to the city administration, work was still going on in the afternoon to rescue people trapped under the rubble of the warehouse in the Shevchenko district. Firefighters wearing oxygen masks battled a fire in a 3,000 m2 warehouse in the northern district of Podil.

Damage to civilian facilities was also reported in other parts of the country. The northeastern city of Kharkiv faced about 20 attacks, killing three employees of a civilian company and wounding 11, Governor Oleg Synegubov said.

In Dnipro, southern Ukraine, the Health Ministry said a maternity hospital had been “severely damaged” but staff and patients had managed to take shelter in time.

Six people were killed and 28 wounded, said Sergiy Lysak, governor of the Dnipropetrovsk region, where a shopping mall, private homes and administrative buildings were attacked. Lysak said there were 12 women in labor at the maternity hospital and four newborns when he was attacked. In Zaporizhzhia, on the banks of the Dnipro River, Governor Yuriy Malashko reported seven dead and 13 wounded. In the Odessa region, which has suffered new attacks since the summer, four people were killed.

Hours earlier, firefighters extinguished a fire in a high-rise building, where smoke was billowing from an open hole in the façade and the air was thick with dust.

Attacks on Lviv, in the west of the country, on the border with Poland, are much rarer, but the region was not spared on Friday. One person was killed and 15 injured when several apartment buildings and two schools were damaged, the Interior Ministry said.

“Stop that terror.” Polish authorities reported that a Russian missile crossed its airspace, entering from Ukraine, where it returned. “Everything indicates that a Russian missile entered Polish airspace. He also left,” said General Wieslaw Kukula, chief of the General Staff of the Polish armed forces. After speaking with Polish President Andrzej Duda, NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said the alliance “stands in solidarity” with Poland, adding: “NATO remains vigilant.”

For its part, the White House said that Biden’s national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, spoke with his Polish counterpart, Jacek Siewiera. “Sullivan expressed the solidarity of the United States with Poland, our close NATO ally,” a statement from Washington said.

In the face of continued Russian attacks, Ukraine is urging Western allies to maintain military support. Ukraine’s presidential adviser Andriy Yermak said kyiv needed “more support and strength to stop this terrorism.”

U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink added that the attacks showed that “Ukraine needs funding now,” after the U.S. released its final weapons package under existing agreements, which have not yet been renewed by the U.S. Congress.

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak declared: “We must continue to support Ukraine, for as long as necessary.” Shortly afterward, Britain announced it would deliver hundreds more air defense missiles to Ukraine.

The European Union’s foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, described it as “yet another cowardly and indiscriminate attack” against civilians.

Nine years in prison for a Russian opponent

Agencies

The Russian opponent Ksenia Fadeeva, an ally of the imprisoned dissident Alexei Navalny, was sentenced yesterday to nine years in prison in Tomsk, Siberia, for “creating an extremist organization,” in a context of strong political repression in Russia, her supporters announced online. Telegram.

The Tomsk court “inflicted nine years in prison on Ksenia Fadeeva,” a former municipal councilor of the city, the message on Telegram stated.

Fadeeva’s defense “is going to appeal the court’s decision,” he added.

Fadeeva, 31, whose trial began in August, led Navalny’s team in the city of Tomsk. She was charged with “creating an extremist organization” and “participating in an organization that undermines the rights of citizens.”

Alexei Navalny was poisoned in Tomsk in 2020 during an electoral support visit to his local collaborators. Seriously ill, he was taken to Germany for treatment before being arrested and sentenced to prison upon his return to Russia.

In 2020, Fadeeva was elected as a Tomsk councilor along with other Siberian independent activists, a rare success for the Russian opposition at the time. In 2021, Navalny’s campaign teams were declared “extremist” by the authorities, exposing her supporters and collaborators to the risk of criminal prosecution.

Several of these opponents left Russia, but Ksenia Fadeeva decided to stay and was arrested in December 2021. Some 20,000 Russians have been detained since the start of the conflict in Ukraine for protesting against the Kremlin’s policies, says the specialized NGO OVD- Info.

Almost all of the country’s leading opposition figures, such as Vladimir Kara-Murza and Ilia Iashin, are behind bars or in exile abroad.

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