At least four people have lost their lives, and dozens are injured following a series of Russian missile strikes targeting Kyiv and other cities across Ukraine. The onslaught left residential buildings in flames and reduced others to rubble, prompting urgent rescue efforts in the affected areas.
In Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city near the Russian border, rescue workers labored to extract injured residents from the aftermath of a devastating attack. The regional governor confirmed three fatalities in the overnight barrage, with an additional 42 individuals sustaining injuries. Amidst the chaos, medical workers attended to wounded citizens, highlighting the severity of the situation.
Reports from Kyiv described air raid sirens piercing the night, followed by a series of explosions believed to be air defense systems responding to the incoming aerial assault. Ukrainian army chief Valery Zaluzhny disclosed that Russian forces fired a total of 41 missiles, encompassing cruise, ballistic, and surface-to-air missiles, with Ukrainian forces successfully intercepting 21.
In the capital city, Mayor Vitali Klitschko reported 20 people wounded as a result of the attacks, which ignited fires in central districts, engulfing buildings and cars. The gravity of the situation was not lost on residents, such as 17-year-old Daryna Bodenchuk, who described the fear and destruction she witnessed in her dormitory.
As the toll continued to rise, Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shymgal expressed determination, stating, “We must make Russia pay for the suffering and pain it has caused to Ukraine.” However, the Kremlin denied allegations that Russian forces intentionally targeted civilian infrastructure, vowing to persist in its nearly two-year invasion.
The missile barrage adds to the already staggering toll of tens of thousands of military personnel and civilians who have lost their lives since the onset of the Russian invasion in February 2022. Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba reiterated the country’s priority for 2024—to gain control over its airspace—and called on allies to support efforts to strengthen air defense capabilities in the face of continued aggression.