Russia fears that its capital is “under attack” after Ukraine retaliated to missile strikes by targeting Vladimir Putin’s airbases.
Ukraine said Russia destroyed homes in the southeast and knocked out power in many areas with a new volley of missiles on Monday, while Moscow said Ukrainian drones had attacked two air bases deep inside Russia hundreds of miles from front lines.
A new missile barrage had been anticipated in Ukraine for days and it took place just as emergency blackouts were due to end, with previous damage repaired. The strikes plunged parts of Ukraine back into freezing darkness with temperatures now firmly below zero Celsius (32 Fahrenheit).
At least four people were killed in the Russian missile attacks, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Handout .
At least four people were killed in the Russian missile attacks, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said, adding that most of some 70 missiles were shot down.
Energy workers had already begun work on restoring power supplies, he said.
Russia's defence ministry said Ukrainian drones attacked two air bases at Ryazan and Saratov in south-central Russia, killing three servicemen and wounding four, with two aircraft damaged by pieces of the drones when they were shot down.
Ukraine did not directly claim responsibility for the attacks. If it was behind them, they would be the deepest strikes inside the Russian heartland since Moscow invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24.
One of the targets, the Engels air base near the city of Saratov, around 450 miles southeast of Moscow, houses bomber planes belonging to Russia's strategic nuclear forces.
"The Kyiv regime, in order to disable Russian long-range aircraft, made attempts to strike with Soviet-made unmanned jet aerial vehicles at the military airfields Dyagilevo, in the Ryazan region, and Engels, in the Saratov region," the Russian defence ministry said.
It said the drones, flying at low altitude, were intercepted by air defences and shot down. The deaths were reported on the Ryazan base, 115 miles southeast of Moscow.
The Russian defence ministry called the drone strikes a terrorist act aimed at disrupting its long-range aviation.
Russia fears that its capital is “under attack” after Ukraine retaliated to missile strikes by targeting Vladimir Putin’s airbases. Reuters
Ukraine's air force said it downed over 60 of more than 70 missiles fired by Russia on Monday - the latest in weeks of attacks targeting its critical infrastructure that have cut off power, heat and water to many parts of the country.
"Our guys are awesome," Andriy Yermak, head of the Ukrainian presidential staff, wrote on Telegram.
Kyiv's forces have also demonstrated an increasing ability to hit strategic Russian targets far beyond the 1,100 km-long frontline in south and eastern Ukraine.
Military blogger and news source said: “With a high degree of probability, the drone worked from our territory, which means that enemy DRGs have already reached the banks of the Volga.
“If the drone came from Ukraine, then our enemy already has technology with a range of 1000 km, which means that Moscow is under attack.
“There is only one conclusion: counter-terrorism measures on the territory of the Russian Federation should be strengthened to the maximum, retaliation strikes should be continued tenfold.”