Russia carried fleet of aerial drone attack on the capital of Ukraine, Kyiv, as confirmed by Ukrainian authorities. The assault, utilizing drones supplied by Iran, marked a significant escalation in the ongoing conflict between the two nations.
On Sunday, Russia launched a series of airstrikes on Kyiv, which Ukrainian officials deemed the largest drone attack the city has experienced. Despite the attack, later in the day, citizens took to the streets to commemorate the anniversary of Kyiv’s founding.
The Ukrainian military reported successfully intercepting and downing 58 out of the 59 drones launched during the attack. These drones, described as Iranian-made “kamikaze” drones, posed a significant threat. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy confirmed that all 36 drones targeting Kyiv had been destroyed.
The pre-dawn assault occurred on Kyiv Day, the annual celebration of the city’s official establishment 1,541 years ago. It was perceived by President Zelenskyy as Russia’s way of commemorating this historic occasion.
Tragically, the attack resulted in the death of a 41-year-old man due to falling debris, marking the first deadly incident in Kyiv in May. Several others sustained injuries as well, according to Mayor Vitali Klitschko.
Ukraine’s Air Force disclosed that Russia specifically targeted military and critical infrastructure facilities in central Ukraine, particularly in the Kyiv region. The increasing intensity of the attacks indicates the impending Ukrainian counteroffensive.
President Zelenskyy revealed that one of the drones struck an unidentified infrastructure target in the Zhytomyr region, located west of the capital.
Ukrainian Air Force spokesperson Yuri Ihnat stated that a combination of fighter aircraft and mobile air defense systems successfully intercepted and brought down the hostile drones. However, specific details regarding the deployed defense systems were not disclosed. In the past, Ukraine has relied on the NASAMS air defense systems to neutralize the Shahed drones.
Despite the exhaustion caused by the attacks and late-night stays in shelters, Kyiv residents demonstrated resilience by participating in daytime festivities, including live concerts, food stalls, and craft shows. Although the celebrations were scaled down compared to previous years, President Zelenskyy emphasized the importance of unity and resilience in the face of adversity.
Moscow refrained from commenting on the attacks. Meanwhile, Russian media quoted Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov reiterating their commitment to achieving their objectives in Ukraine.
Several districts of Kyiv, including the historical Pecherskyi neighborhood, suffered damage as a result of the overnight attacks. Kyiv, as Ukraine’s largest city with a population of approximately 3 million, bore the brunt of the assault.
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