At least two people were hurt and key infrastructure has been damaged in a Russian drone assault on the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, the latest attempt by Moscow to ravage Ukraine’s power supplies.
Here are the latest developments:
- Russia strikes central Ukraine: Russian forces bombarded Ukraine’s central Dnipropetrovsk region overnight using drones, Grad multiple rocket launcher systems and other heavy artillery, according to local authorities. Nikopol, which lies on the west bank of the Dnipro River across from the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, was struck by more than 60 Russian shells.
- Ukraine fending off further drone attacks: The Ukrainian Air Force claims to have shot down 30 out of 35 drones launched by Russia from Sunday night into Monday, but those that dodged air defenses damaged power systems and civilian targets. The Iranian-made, self-detonating Shahed-136 and Shahed-131 drones were launched from the “eastern coast of the Sea of Azov,” the Air Force said in a statement on Facebook.
- Kyiv pushes for Patriot missile systems: A spokesperson for the Ukrainian Air Force said Ukraine would be better able to defend itself from drone and missile attacks by Russian forces if it were provided with fighter aircraft and Patriot missile defense systems. Last week, CNN exclusively revealed that the US was finalizing plans to send the Patriot missile defense system to Ukraine.
- Weapons and air defense on Ukraine’s Christmas list: Ukrainian children are asking St. Nicholas for weapons, air defense systems and “victory for all Ukrainians,” President Volodymyr Zelensky said Monday. “They understand everything, our children. Let us act!” he added.
- Russia shoots down US-made missiles: Russian forces shot down four US-made “HARM” missiles over the country’s Belgorod region, the defense ministry said Monday. “HARM” missiles are air-to-surface anti-radiation missile designed to home in on electronic transmissions coming from surface-to-air radar systems.