Russian missile strikes on Ukraine kill one person in Kyiv

  • Russia launched more than 20 cruise missiles, killing one person
  • President Zelensky says the Russians are in league with the devil
  • Attack in Kiev called “terrorist on New Year’s Eve”.
  • The energy minister says that the attacks did not cause much damage

Russia fired more than 20 cruise missiles at targets in Ukraine on Saturday, killing at least one person in Kiev, President Volodymyr Zelensky said the attacks showed Moscow was in league with the devil.

The second attack by large Russian rockets in three days severely damaged a hotel and residential building in Kiev. Energy Minister German Galushchenko said on Facebook that the strikes did not cause significant damage to the national electricity system.

Russia has been attacking Ukraine’s vital infrastructure with a barrage of missiles and drones since October, causing severe blackouts in cold weather.

Zelensky, speaking in a video address, noted that Russia also launched attacks during Easter and Christmas.

“They call themselves Christians … but they are for the devil. They are for him and with him,” he said.

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At least a dozen people were injured in the attacks. Kyiv Mayor Vitaly Klitschko said that among the injured was a Japanese journalist who was taken to hospital.

The country’s largest private energy company, DTEK, later said it had canceled emergency power outages in Kiev and the surrounding region.

Zelensky said in his comments to Russian speakers that President Vladimir Putin is destroying the future of Russia.

“No one will forgive you for terror. No one in the world will forgive you for it. Ukraine will not forgive you,” he said, repeating calls for allies to supply more anti-aircraft and anti-missile systems.

Army chief Valery Zaluzhniy said air defenses shot down 12 cruise missiles, including six in the Kyiv region, five in the Zhytomyr region and one in the Khmelnytskyi region.

He told the Telegram that the cruise missiles were launched from strategic bombers hundreds of miles away over the Caspian Sea and from land-based launchers.

“Russia’s massive missile attack is deliberately targeting residential areas, not even our energy infrastructure,” Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba wrote on Twitter after the attack.

“War criminal Putin ‘celebrates’ the New Year by killing people,” Kuleba said, calling for Russia to be stripped of its permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council.

Ukraine’s human rights ombudsman, Dmitry Lubinets, described the attack as “terror on New Year’s Eve.”


Other Ukrainian cities were also shelled. In the southern Mykolaiv region, local governor Vitaly Kim said on television that six people had been injured.

Kim Jong Un said in a separate Telegram post that Russia had targeted civilians, which Moscow has previously denied.

“According to today’s trends, occupiers are not only attacking critical (infrastructure)… in many cities (they are targeting) residential areas, hotels, garages, roads.”

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In the western city of Khmelnytskyi, two people were injured in a drone attack, Ukrainian presidential aide Kiril Tymoshenko said. He also reported a strike in the southern industrial city of Zaporozhye, which Tymoshenko said damaged residential buildings.

Ukraine’s Defense Ministry responded in a telegram: “With each new missile attack on civilian infrastructure, more and more Ukrainians are convinced of the need to fight until the complete collapse of the Putin regime.”

Curfew remained in place throughout Ukraine from 19:00. until midnight, so in 2023 opening celebrations in public spaces became impossible.

Several regional governors posted messages on social media warning residents not to violate restrictions on New Year’s Eve.

(This story has been refiled to correct a typo in the headline)

Additional reporting by Pavel Polityuk and David Ljunggren; By Max Hunder and Tom Balmforth; Edited by Hugh Lawson, David Holmes and Mark Porter

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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