Russian strikes kill 1 in Kyiv day after West pledges tanks to Ukraine
Lviv, Ukraine, Jan 26 (EFE).- Air raid alerts were activated across much of Ukraine on Thursday amid reports of fresh Russian missile strikes a day after Western powers agreed to supply Kyiv with battle tanks.
Explosions were heard in several Ukrainian regions including the capital Kyiv, interior ministry advisor Anton Gerashchenko said in a social media post, adding that the nation’s air defense systems were “hard at work.”
Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko said at least one person was killed and two injured when a rocket hit a “non-residential building” in the Holosivskyi district of the city.
The Kyiv City Military Administration claimed in a Telegram post that air defense systems had downed 15 Russian cruise missiles fired at the capital region.
The country’s air force said it had also intercepted 24 Iranian-made Shahed kamikaze drones.
Emergency power outages were enforced in the regions of Kyiv, Odesa, Dnipropetrovsk and Zhytomyr ahead of expected Russian strikes on infrastructure, private energy firm DTEK Group said in a statement on messaging app Telegram.
Missile strikes damaged “several” energy infrastructure facilities in the southwestern Odesa oblast, regional military leader Yuri Kruk said on Telegram, adding that no human casualties were reported.
The nationwide air alerts were sounded a day after Kyiv’s allies boosted their military support for Ukraine’s forces by announcing the provision of battle tanks.
Germany’s announcement that it would provide 14 Leopard 2 tanks and issue the required permission for other European countries to re-export models of the German-made vehicle was followed shortly after by United States president Joe Biden’s pledge of 31 M1 Abrams tanks.
Boris Pistorius, Germany’s defense minister, on Thursday said Leopard 2 tanks from German stocks would be delivered between the end of March and the beginning of April.
Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked both Germany and the US in a statement late Wednesday.
The Kremlin on Thursday said the decision by Western powers to supply the Ukrainian army with battle tanks demonstrated their growing “direct involvement in the conflict.”EFE