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Russia launches ‘record’ 75 drones on Ukraine

Admin By Admin Nov25,2023

KYIV: Ukraine said on Saturday (Nov 25) it had downed 74 out of 75 drones Russia launched at it overnight, in what it said was the biggest such attack since the start of the invasion.

The Ukrainian army said Russia had launched a “record number” of Iranian-made Shahed drones, the majority of which targeted Kyiv, causing power cuts as temperatures dipped below freezing.

The drone attack came as Ukraine marked Holodomor Remembrance Day, commemorating the 1930s starvation of millions in Ukraine under Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin.

“The enemy launched a record number of attack drones at Ukraine! The main direction of the attack is Kyiv,” said the commander of Ukraine’s air force, General Mykola Oleshchuk.

The air force said it had downed “74 out of 75” Shahed drones.

Kyiv authorities said five people – including an 11-year-old – were wounded in the capital, where the air raid lasted six hours.

Falling drone debris had sparked fires and damaged buildings across the city, Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko said.

AFP saw Kyiv residents clearing smashed windows and other damage in the city’s Dniprovsky district, with ambulances parked nearby.

One of the buildings that was damaged housed a nursery and another had part of its top floor destroyed.

Local resident Viktor Vasylenko said he had soothed his young daughter, who experienced “panic and nausea” during the long night-time attacks as they sheltered in a corridor.

The 38-year-old said his family always has “everything prepared” in case of such attacks but this was the first time one had hit so close.

“My wife thought that the house would collapse in half,” he said.

Latvia’s president, Edgars Rinkevics, on a visit to Kyiv during the attack, posted a photo of himself on social media inside a dark bomb shelter.

In a statement, the French foreign ministry condemned the drone barrage “with the utmost firmness”.

More than 21 months into Moscow’s offensive, fighting is most intense in the east of Ukraine and is now centred around the city of Avdiivka, which is nearly encircled by Russian forces.

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