By Samantha Jones-
Russia launched a barrage of missiles against Ukraine, stopping out electricity and water in a number of Ukrainian cities where residents are coping with sub-freezing temperatures, Ukrainian officials said.
Air raid sirens sounded in the capital Kyiv and across the country in what Ukrainian officials have been calling the latest wave of Russian missile strikes.
Ukraine claimed to have shot down over 60 of the missiles, weakening Russi’s offensive.
“Air defense shot down most of the missiles. Energy workers have already started to restore the electricity power. Our people never give up,” President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a brief video message shortly after the air raid sirens went silent and Ukrainian officials gave the all clear.
In Russia, media reports said two Russian military bases suffered explosions. One took place at the Engels-2 air base near the southwestern city of Saratov, several hundred miles inside Russia.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is also reported to have driven a Mercedes over the bridge that links Moscow-annexed Crimea to the Russian mainland weeks after the vital link was partially blown up.
The 12-mile bridge has been the main avenue of supplies to Crimea that has served as a key base for Russian military operations in Ukraine.
There have been periodic attacks on military facilities in Russia, but it’s highly unusual for one to take place so deep inside Russian territory. Ukraine did not comment, sticking to its existing policy of not speaking publicly when there are apparent attacks in Russia.
At the beginning of the invasion of Ukraine, Putin told the Russian people his goal was to “demilitarise and de-Nazify Ukraine”. He said he wanted to protect people subjected to what he called eight years of bullying and genocide by Ukraine’s government – claims which have no factual basis.
His official comments have long been known to be propagandist, often fooling large segments of the Russian population, while holding the Russian media hostage to his warped political agenda.
Russian’s military eventually pulled back from around Kyiv and Chernihiv and regrouped in the north-east. The main goal was now the “liberation of Donbas” – broadly referring to Ukraine’s two industrial regions in the east of Luhansk and Donetsk.