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Russia launches deadly drone strikes in renewed attacks on Kyiv

<img src='!/fileImage/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/16x9_460/kyiv-drone-attack.jpg' alt='Kyiv drone attack' width='460' title='A man falls on the ground following a drone attack in Kyiv on October 17, 2022, amid the Russian invasion of Ukraine. (Photo by Yasuyoshi CHIBA / AFP) (Photo by YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP via Getty Images)' height='259' /> <p>Waves of explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine's capital as families were preparing to start their week early Monday, the blasts echoing across Kyiv, setting buildings ablaze and sending people scurrying to shelters.</p>

Waves of explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine’s capital as families were preparing to start their week early Monday, the blasts echoing across Kyiv, setting buildings ablaze and sending people scurrying to shelters.

Exactly how many drones nose-dived into the capital wasn’t immediately clear. Drones used in the attack appeared to include Iranian-made Shaheds. Previous Russian airstrikes on Kyiv were mostly with missiles.

In the Kyiv region alone, 13 or more drones were shot down, all of them as they flew in from the south, said a spokesperson for the Ukrainian Air Force, Yurii Ihnat.

The capital’s central Shevchenko district was among the areas hit, with apartment blocks damaged and a non-residential building on fire, Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said. He said 18 people were rescued from the rubble of one apartment building and that rescue workers were trying to extract two other people known to be under the debris.

One strike appeared to target the city’s heating network, hitting an operations centre. Another slammed into a four-story residential building, ripping a large hole in it and collapsing at least three apartments on top of each other. Four bodies were recovered, including those of a woman who was six months pregnant and her husband, Klitschko said. An older woman and another man were also killed there.

WATCH l Deadly drone strikes on Kyiv:

Kyiv’s central district shaken by drone attacks.

3 hours ago

Duration 0:36

Kyiv’s central Shevchenko district was hit by multiple blasts on Monday morning, the second time in a week.

An Associated Press photographer who was out shooting morning scenes of Kyiv caught one of the drones on camera, its triangle-shaped wing and pointed warhead clearly visible against the blue sky. Drones came in several waves and buzzed overhead with angry hums from their engines.

“The whole night, and the whole morning, the enemy terrorizes the civilian population,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a social media post. “Kamikaze drones and missiles are attacking all of Ukraine.”

“The enemy can attack our cities, but it won’t be able to break us,” he wrote.

Kyiv a renewed target

Social media video posts showed drones buzzing over the capital and smoke billowing in the early morning light. The sound of sustained gunfire could also be heard in one post, seemingly trying to shoot a drone down.

Explosions were heard from the same central Kyiv district where a missile strike a week ago tore a hole in a children’s playground.

Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko speaks at a news conference next to a building damaged in a drone attack on Monday. (Yashuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty Images)

The Russian military said it used “long-range air- and sea-based high-precision weapons” to fire at Ukrainian military and energy facilities. The strikes hit “all assigned targets,” Defence Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said.

Strikes in central Kyiv had become a rarity in the last several months after Russian forces failed to capture the capital at the beginning of the war. Last week’s early morning strikes were the first explosions heard in Kyiv’s city centre in several months, and put Kyiv as well as the rest of the country back on edge as the war nears nine months.

Western nations have promised to bolster Ukrainian air defences with systems that can shoot down drones but much of that weaponry has yet to arrive and, in some cases, may be months away.

“The challenges are serious, because the air defence forces and means are the same as they were at the beginning of the war,” Ihnat said.

Day 67:34Meet Vladimir Putin’s new top commander in Ukraine, a man known as ‘General Armageddon’ for his record in Syria

48 hours before Russia began renewed strikes against Ukrainian cities, Sergei Surovikin was named the country’s top military commander in Ukraine. Surovikin is known as General Armageddon, a nickname earned during Russia’s brutal military campaign in Syria. Washington Post reporter Mary Ilyushina describes his past record and how it might change Russia’s war in Ukraine.

Retaliation for bridge bombing

Russian President Vladimir Putin said last week’s strikes were in retaliation for the bombing of a bridge connecting the Crimean peninsula with the Russian mainland. Putin blames Ukraine for masterminding the blast, which suspended traffic over the bridge and curtailed Moscow’s ability to use the bridge to supply Russian troops in the occupied regions of southern Ukraine.

The strike on Kyiv comes as fighting has intensified in the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk in recent days, as well as the continued Ukrainian counteroffensive in the south near Kherson and Zaporizhzhia. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in his Sunday evening address that there was heavy fighting around the cities of Bakhmut and Soledar in the Donetsk region.

The Sunday Magazine18:52What Russia’s retaliatory attacks tell us about the next phase of the war in Ukraine

After a week of retaliatory attacks on civilian targets and energy infrastructure in Ukraine, global affairs analyst and Atlantic Council senior fellow Michael Bociurkiw says Russian President Vladimir Putin may be pushing the war to its most dangerous phase since 2014. Bociurkiw joins David Common to discuss the aftermath of the Crimean bridge bombing, how Ukrainians are coping with this new phase of fighting, and the role Canada and the West must play.

The Donetsk and Luhansk regions make up the bulk of the industrial east known as the Donbas, and were two of four regions annexed by Russia in September in defiance of international law.

Denis Pushilin, the Moscow-backed head of the Donetsk region, said on Monday that the two countries had conducted another prisoner swap, affecting 220 people overall.

NATO begins preplanned exercises

Meanwhile, NATO on Monday began its long-planned annual nuclear exercises in northwestern Europe, drills that were planned before Putin ordered Russian troops into Ukraine.

Fourteen member countries were due to take part in the Steadfast Noon exercises, which are to involve around 60 aircraft including fighter jets, and surveillance and refuelling planes.

Medics help an injured woman after after a drone fired on buildings in Kyiv. (Efrem Lukatsky/The Associated Press)

The bulk of the war games will be held at least 1,000 kilometres from Russia’s borders. Training flights will take place over Belgium, the host, as well as over the North Sea and the United Kingdom.

The exercises involve fighter jets capable of carrying nuclear warheads, but do not involve any live bombs.

U.S. long-range B-52 bombers will also take part in the manoeuvres, which will run until Oct. 30.


Newzcap Staff