Russia attacks Ukraine’s power grid and captures land in the east | Russo-Ukrainian War
Russian forces have bombarded power facilities across Ukraine as officials say a new Russian offensive is underway in the east.
Ukraine’s air force said 61 of 71 Russian missiles were shot down on Friday. However, Energy Minister German Galushchenko said Russia hit energy facilities in six regions with missiles and drones, causing power outages across most of Ukraine.
Russia has repeatedly attacked civilian infrastructure far from the front lines, leaving millions of Ukrainians without electricity, heat or water for days in the middle of winter.
Attacks often follow Ukraine’s diplomatic or battlefield advances.
Friday’s attack comes as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy wraps up a tour of his European allies, where he is staying. warmly received but does not guarantee the public promises of the fighter he is asking for.
“London, Paris, Brussels – everywhere I have been talking in the last few days about how to strengthen our soldiers. There were very important insights and we got good signals,” Zelenskyy said in his nightly video address.
“This involves long-range missiles and tanks and our next level of cooperation – fighter aircraft.”
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said 10 Russian missiles were shot down in the Ukrainian capital after sirens sounded during the morning rush hour and tired residents sought shelter.
Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal said Ukraine does not have 44% of nuclear power generation and 75% of thermal power capacity.
“This is a deliberate target of infrastructure that helps Ukrainians survive the winter,” said Deputy State Department spokesman Vedant Patel.
Russia has denied targeting civilians and says the facilities it attacked aided Kiev’s war effort.
Ukraine has prepare for a new Russian attackbelieves President Vladimir Putin wants to tout success on the battlefield ahead of the February 24 anniversary of the invasion. Ukrainian governors in the eastern Donetsk and Luhansk regions say that push has already begun.
Putin will give his delayed annual introductory speech to parliament on February 21. That was the day last year when he recognized independence for the Donetsk and Luhansk regions led by Russian-led separatists. back control, a prelude to invasion.
The complete capture of those provinces, out of four that Russia later claimed to have annexed, would allow Putin to assert that one of his main priorities had been achieved.
Also before the anniversary of the invasion, US President Joe Biden will visit Poland, Ukraine’s neighbor, from February 20-22 and give a speech on Ukraine and meet with allies, the White House. announced on Friday.
Russian forces focus on Donbas
Russia’s ground forces are concentrating on the industrial zone of eastern Ukraine, in particular the Luhansk and Donetsk provinces that make up the industrial region of Donbas, where the fighting has recently been heaviest, the Ukrainian military said. Moscow-backed separatists have been fighting Ukrainian forces there since 2014.
Kiev says Russian forces are pushing ahead at key points on several fronts in the Donbas region, although Russian progress is said to be slow.
In the Donetsk region, local Ukrainian officials reported that the Russian military had deployed additional troops and launched offensive operations.
“There is a daily escalation and Russian attacks are becoming active throughout the region,” Governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said.
In Luhansk province, Russian troops are trying to break through Ukraine’s defenses, according to regional governor Serhiy Haidai.
“The situation is getting worse, the enemy is constantly attacking; The Russians are bringing in a large amount of heavy equipment and aircraft,” Haidai said.
There was little change in the battlefield position for weeks in the frigid winter conditions.
Denis Pushilin, the head of the Moscow-appointed Donetsk region, said that Russian forces had taken positions in the southern suburbs of Vuhledar.
He added that Ukraine has sent more reinforcements to the city that have slowed the Russian advance.
Pushilin’s claims cannot be independently verified.
Vuhledar is a strategically important town located next to the railway that runs through the region on the way to Crimea.
The capture of the town is important for Russia to secure the rail link with Crimea and to advance towards its goal of capturing the entire Donetsk region.