Russian missile attacks rock Ukraine on New Year’s Eve

KYIV: Explosions were reported throughout Ukraine on New Year’s Eve as Russia carried out its second major round of missile attacks in three days on Saturday, Reuters reported while quoting Ukrainian officials.

Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said at least one person had been killed and eight wounded after a series of explosions in the capital.

Reuters correspondents reported hearing 10 loud blasts in the city.

The mayor said one of those wounded by the blasts was a Japanese journalist who had been taken to hospital.

A hotel just south of Kyiv’s city centre was hit and a residential building in another district was damaged, according to the city administration.

Kyrylo Tymoshenko, an official in Ukraine’s presidential office, wrote on Telegram that emergency services were heading to the scene but did not provide further details.

The governor of the surrounding Kyiv region, Oleksiy Kuleba, had warned shortly beforehand of a possible incoming missile attack and said air defences in the region were engaging targets.

Nationwide blasts

Other cities across Ukraine also came under fire. In the southern region of Mykolaiv, local governor Vitaliy Kim said on television that six people had been wounded.

In a separate post on Telegram, Mr Kim said Russia had targeted civilians with the strikes, something Moscow has previously denied.

The official also reported a strike in the southern industrial powerhouse city of Zaporizhzhia, which Mr. Tymoshenko said had damaged residential buildings.

“With each new missile attack on civilian infrastructure, more and more Ukrainians are convinced of the need to fight until the complete collapse of Putin’s regime,” Ukraine’s defence ministry wrote on Telegram.

Ukraine shoots down Russian missiles

Ukraine’s air defence shot down 12 out of 20 missiles launched by Russia on Saturday afternoon, the Ukrainian army said, according to AFP

Russia “launched more than 20 cruise missiles… Our air defence destroyed 12 cruise missiles,” Ukraine’s commander-in-chief General Valeriy Zaluzhny said on social media.

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