Russia: Russia uses latest hypersonic missiles to strike Ukraine, nine dead

KYIV: Russia launched its biggest airstrike in weeks on Thursday, hitting targets across Ukraine with a complex barrage of weapons, including its latest hypersonic missiles, in what it said was retaliation for a raid last week by a pro-Ukrainian armed group in Bryansk region of Russia. Ending weeks of relative calm in Kyiv and other cities, the strikes killed at least nine people across the country, knocked out power in several regions and damaged three power plants, Ukrainian officials said.
The strikes included six of Russia’s most used new hypersonic missiles known as Kinzhals, or Daggers, in a single wave since the war began a year ago, according to the Ukrainian Air Force. Of the 81 missiles fired overnight and in the morning, 47 hit targets, Ukraine said. That’s a far higher ratio of strikes to missiles fired than Russia has achieved in barrages in recent months.
Russia has fired 48 air-launched missiles of various types, including its most advanced missiles, called Kinzhals – which fly several times faster than the speed of sound and are designed to carry nuclear warheads with a range of over 2000km. The Ukrainian army claims that it does not have an air defense system capable of shooting down the Kinzhals. Russia is believed to possess only a few dozen kinzhals, which President Vladimir Putin regularly touts as a weapon for which NATO has no answer.
Twenty Kalibr cruise missiles were fired from the Black Sea and the Sea of ​​Azov. Russia sometimes guides these missiles to follow the looping trajectories of major Ukrainian rivers, allowing them to fly low and avoid terrain. Russia also launched a barrage of 13 older S-300 missiles, anti-aircraft missiles that Russia has repurposed to hit ground targets while other types are missing, and eight Shahed explosive drones.
Five people were killed in their homes when a rocket landed in a residential area in the western Lviv region bordering Poland, and one person died in the Dnipropetrovsk region of central Ukraine, local officials said. To the north, in the Kharkiv region near the border with Russia, 15 missiles hit infrastructure and a residential building, the head of the region’s military administration said on Telegram. Three people were also killed in Russian shelling in the southern city of Kherson, officials said. In the capital, Kiev, two large explosions an hour apart injured at least two residents and sent a plume of black smoke billowing from the city center, smashing windows and engulfing cars in flames. At least one hypersonic missile appears to have hit the capital, an official in kyiv said.
The head of the UN nuclear agency has launched an impassioned plea after the strikes temporarily cut off the Russian occupation Zaporizhia nuclear power plant in Ukraine from external power lines and forced it to switch to diesel generators. It was the sixth time the Zaporizhzhia facility had to switch to its emergency power supply since the invasion, according to Rafael Mariano Grossi. “If we allow this to go on and on, then one day our luck will run out,” he said, referring to the possibility of a nuclear accident. Later in the day, the nuclear power plant was reconnected to the electricity grid, the national electricity utility, Ukrenergo, said in an update on Telegram.
“Occupiers can only terrorize civilians. That’s all they can do. . Volodymyr Zelensky said in a statement, describing the strikes that hit 10 regions. In the capital kyiv, the seven-hour warning was the longest in Russia’s five-month air campaign.


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