Half of Leonid Fatkulin’s house in Kyiv’s southern suburb of Osokorki is now collapsing into a crater in his garden.

Just after 9am this morning he was woken by a loud explosion when the wreckage of a Russian warhead fell into his house.

“I was about to wake up and take a shower and shave. Then I heard an explosion and at first I didn’t understand what it was. I opened my eyes and I saw the door was wide open and something had fallen out,” says Leonid, who we found smoking a cigarette and drinking coffee in front of the remains of his house.

Image:
Leonid Fatkulin

“The first thing I wanted to know was if my son was okay. I yelled at him, ‘Are you alive?’ He said ‘yes’ and then I calmed down.”

In one of the largest attacks since the early days of the war, Russia launched a massive wave of missiles at cities across Ukraine.

The country’s air force said it intercepted 54 of the 69 rockets fired.

Officials say 16 of those missiles targeted Kyiv where three people were injured by falling debris, including a 14-year-old girl.

Despite the limited number of victims, the message from Moscow is loud and clear.

The massive attack comes just three days after the Russian Defense Ministry announced that the wreckage of a low-flying Ukrainian drone they shot down over the critical Saratov air base, Engles-2, had killed three of their soldiers.

Friends are reunited after going to underground bunkers for shelter from shelling
Image:
Friends are reunited after going to underground bunkers for shelter from shelling

It was the second time Moscow said the strategic site had been targeted by a Ukrainian drone in just three weeks.

Rumors of a retaliatory attack have been circulating for days. Just hours after the blasts, residents of Kyiv were walking normally in their city.

Mayor Vitali Klitschko told Sky News the capital may be resilient, but its people are very angry.

Mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko
Image:
Mayor of Kyiv Vitali Klitschko

“Russians want to bring depression, especially right now on Christmas and New Years. They want to bring us back to dark times without lighting or heating. They have to bring depressed mood to everyone,” he said. .

“Instead, Ukrainians are very angry and say, ‘Better to stay without electricity or heating than never to give up.'”

Back in Osokorki, Leonid’s young neighbors gather to clean up the rubble of his house. A young man yells at her and her face lights up.

“They found the second row of my teeth. Now I’m going to be toothy,” Leonid said with a smile after putting the dentures excavated from the rubble into place.

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His attitude seems disillusioned but saddened by the reality of the war he woke up to this morning.

“It’s a crime against humanity, not just against me but against everyone,” he said.

“This time I suffered but next time it will be someone else.”

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