Russia hit Kyiv with cruise missiles fired from the Caspian Sea on Sunday, hitting a rail car repair factory in the Ukrainian capital, in the first such attack in weeks, the army chief and Ukrainian Railways.
Dark smoke billowed into the sky over the eastern outskirts of Kyiv. At least one person was hospitalized but no deaths were immediately reported, Mayor Vitaly Klitschko said.
Ukrainian air defenses shot down an incoming missile around 06:00 local time (0300 GMT), the military said.
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A Russian missile that was likely heading for Kyiv flew “at a critical low altitude” over a major nuclear power plant in the southern region of Mykolaiv, state nuclear operator Energoatom said on Telegram.
The Russian Defense Ministry said its missiles destroyed T-72 tanks and armored vehicles supplied to Ukraine by Eastern European countries that were housed at a railcar repair plant in Kyiv.
Oleksandr Kamyshin, head of Ukraine’s railways, confirmed that four missiles hit the Darnytsia wagon repair plant in eastern Kyiv, but denied there was any military equipment at the site.
“Their target (of Russia) is the economy and the civilian population,” he said.
The sprawling rail system served as a vital lifeline as the February 24 Russian invasion destroyed Ukraine’s economy and cut off export routes through the Black Sea.
The missiles were the first to hit the capital since late April, when a Radio Liberty producer was killed in a Russian missile strike that hit the building in which she lived.
Watch | Russian-Ukrainian conflict: explosions rock kyiv, the Ukrainian capital
“According to preliminary data, the (Russians) launched missiles from Tu-95 aircraft from the Caspian Sea,” the Ukrainian Air Force said in a statement.
Presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak has called on the West to impose more sanctions on Russia to punish it for strikes and supply more weapons to Ukraine.
“The Kremlin is resorting to new insidious attacks. Today’s missile strikes on Kyiv have only one goal: to kill as many as possible,” he wrote in a tweet.
The mayor of the historic town of Brovary, about 20 km (12 miles) from central Kyiv, urged people to stay at home as there had been reports of a soot smell coming from the smoke.
Despite continued Russian offensives in Ukraine and widespread destruction, life in Kyiv has been relatively free of attack in recent weeks after Moscow focused its invasion on the east and south.
Air raid sirens regularly disrupt life in Kyiv, but there have been no major strikes on the city for several weeks.
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The Darnytskyi district on the left bank of the Dnipro extends from the fringes of Kyiv to the banks of the river while the Dniprovskyi region to the north of the city lies along the river.
Oleksandr Honcharenko, mayor of Kramatorsk in the eastern Donetsk region, reported overnight strikes on the city, causing widespread damage but no casualties.
On Saturday, Ukrainian officials said the country’s troops recaptured part of the besieged city of Sievierodonetsk in a counteroffensive against Russia.
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Post expires at 2:49pm on Wednesday June 15th, 2022