July 16, 2024

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Russia intensifies Ukraine attacks on New Year’s Eve

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Ukraine on Sunday issued nationwide air raid alerts after several people were killed and dozens injured by Russian attacks in the eastern region of Kharkiv, two days after Moscow’s deadliest strikes on Ukrainian cities in nearly two years of war.

The mounting attacks and casualties on New Year’s Eve come as both sides settle in for a protracted war after Russia’s full-scale invasion launched in February 2022 failed to achieve its aims but claimed hundreds of thousands of casualties on both sides.

Ukraine’s air force said on Sunday that “the whole of Ukraine is on missile strike alert” after Russian MiG-31 jets had taken off, with “significant activity” recorded in the east and south of the country.

“The threat of aviation being used for destruction remains! Don’t ignore the air alert!” the air force urged Ukrainians as they were preparing for New Year’s celebrations. Ukrainian media and regional officials reported explosions on Sunday in the central regions of Kryviy Rih and Kirovohrad.

In Kharkiv region, police said Russian artillery strikes had killed a woman and two men in the village of Borova.

The region’s governor Oleg Synegubov said at least six missiles had hit Kharkiv city on Saturday night, with 28 civilians injured in strikes that also hit healthcare buildings and the prominent Kharkiv Palace hotel which is frequented by media.

Ihor Klymenko, Ukraine’s minister for internal affairs, said a journalist from the UK was among those injured in the attack.

The Kharkiv Palace hotel was hit by a Russian missile strike © Vital Hnidyi/Reuters

“On the eve of the New Year, the Russians want to intimidate our city, but we are not scared,” Ihor Terekhov, Kharkiv’s mayor, said in a statement on social media. His posts included photos and videos of rescue workers putting out fires and searching through rubble for survivors…

2023-12-31 08:01:35

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