Russia launched an intense wave of airstrikes on cities throughout Ukraine on Tuesday, forcing widespread blackouts and hitting residential buildings within the capital, Kyiv.
The barrage focused key cities from Lviv within the west to Kharkiv within the northeast, pounding vitality infrastructure and knocking out energy to huge areas in one of many largest coordinated assaults of the conflict.
It got here days after the nation celebrated retaking the key southern city of Kherson — one of the vital dramatic setbacks but for President Vladimir Putin — and as world leaders together with President Joe Biden met at a summit of the Group of 20 nations in Indonesia that has been dominated by Russia’s invasion.
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko mentioned on his Telegram channel that two residential buildings have been hit within the metropolis’s Pechersk district, whereas a number of missiles have been intercepted and shot down. Authorities discovered a physique in one of many buildings, he mentioned.
NBC Information has not verified the numbers.
Air raid sirens have been heard throughout town and the broader Kyiv area, and folks have been urged to remain in shelters as flames poured out from one of many residence blocks that have been hit.
Different cities reported to be hit included Lviv, Zhytomyr, Khmelnytskyi and Rivne within the west in addition to southern Kryvyi Rih, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s native metropolis.
“85 missile strikes have been fired at Ukraine, at our cities, principally at vitality infrastructure. It’s clear what the enemy desires — he won’t obtain it,” Zelenskyy mentioned in a brief video posted to Telegram. He warned residents to remain in shelters as extra assaults may observe.
A senior Ukrainian official, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, described the scenario as “crucial” and urged Ukrainians to “grasp in there.” Vitality suppliers introduced emergency blackouts within the capital and authorities introduced comparable steps elsewhere, too.
Ukrainian Overseas Minister Dmytro Kuleba mentioned that the strikes ought to put an finish to strain for peace talks with Russia.
Biden’s nationwide safety adviser, Jake Sullivan, mentioned in an announcement that america “strongly condemns Russia’s newest missile assaults towards Ukraine,” including that they “will serve to solely deepen the issues among the many G‑20 in regards to the destabilizing influence of Putin’s conflict.”
Whereas the retaking of Kherson sparked jubilation in Ukraine, officers have cautioned that the conflict is far from over and that Putin may retaliate for the humiliation of his forces’ retreat within the south.
The Kremlin has but to touch upon the strikes and has persistently denied concentrating on civilians.
Going through a collection of battlefield setbacks, its navy has more and more attacked civilian infrastructure forward of winter whereas digging in to new defensive positions.
However on Tuesday Russia pulled again troops and civilian directors from cities on the japanese financial institution of the Dnieper River reverse Kherson, in response to Reuters, indicators that it is likely to be pressured to retreat additional after withdrawing throughout the river simply final week.
Zelenskyy signaled his forces’ marketing campaign to drive out invading troops would proceed unabated, regardless of recommendations from the U.S. that winter is likely to be an excellent time to barter.
“We won’t enable Russia to attend it out, construct up its forces, after which begin a brand new collection of terror and world destabilization,” Zelenskyy mentioned in an deal with to the G-20, referring to it because the “G-19” in a jab at Moscow.
Related Press, Artem Grudinin, Reuters and Mithil Aggarwal contributed.