Russia Hits Ukraine’s Capital With Waves Of Suicide Drones, Kills 4

Russia Hits Ukraine’s Capital With Waves Of Suicide Drones, Kills 4

Updated: 3 months, 20 days, 7 hours, 37 minutes, 12 seconds ago

Several people have been killed as Russia struck Ukraine’s capital with a wave of explosive-laden suicide drones on Monday, Ukrainian interior minister has said.

The strikes hit critical infrastructure in three regions, cutting off electricity in hundreds of villages across the country, according to Prime Minister Denys Shmygal.

Drones used in the attack appeared to include Iranian-made "Shaheds".

Four bodies were recovered, including those of a woman who was 6 months pregnant and her husband, Klitschko said. An older woman and another man also were killed there, ABC News reports.

Previous Russian airstrikes on Kyiv were mostly with missiles. Intense, sustained bursts of gunfire rang out Monday as the drones hummed overhead, apparently, soldiers trying to shoot them down. Others headed for shelter — though city life quickly resumed in a country that has become grimly accustomed to attacks.

According to US News, the explosions on Monday began at about 06:30 local time (03:30 GMT). The most recent was at about 08:10 local time.

Two were said to be close to the city centre, with sirens and car alarms heard across the area.

"The enemy can attack our cities, but it won't be able to break us," said President Zelensky, describing the attacks as "terrorising the civilian population".

While Kyiv's mayor, Vitaliy Klitschko, described the attacks as a "genocide of the Ukrainian people. The Russians need a Ukraine without Ukrainians." He noted that the city authorities were expecting soon the arrival of air defence systems to protect the capital from drone attacks.

What was being targeted is hard to determine. The mayor's office said residential and non-residential buildings had been hit. Railway officials say explosions were seen close to Kyiv's main station.

One Reuters journalist reported seeing fragments of a drone used in the attack that bore the words, "For Belgorod".

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.

The Iranian-made Shaheds, which Russia has rebranded as Geran-2 drones, pack an explosive charge and can linger over targets before nosediving into them. They can be fired one after the other.

Andrii Yermak, the head of the Ukrainian president’s office, confirmed in a social media post that Shahed drones were among those used in the strike. Iran has previously denied providing Russia with weapons, although its Revolutionary Guard chief has boasted about providing arms to the world’s top powers, without elaborating.

The drones have also been repeatedly used by Russia elsewhere in Ukraine in recent weeks to target urban centres and infrastructure, including power stations. They are comparatively cheap, costing in the region of US$20,000.

Their use in swarms presents a challenge to Ukrainian air defences, said Ihnat, the Air Force spokesman. 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, maybe 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. Some air defence weaponry supplied by Western nations can only be used during daylight hours when targets are visible, he added.

The Russian border city of Belgorod has been hit several times since Russia invaded Ukraine. Moscow blames Kyiv for the attacks.

A week ago, the capital was hit by Russian missiles at rush hour, part of nationwide attacks which left 19 dead.

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