Russia's New Year raids on Ukraine kill three, wound dozens

Russia's New Year raids on Ukraine kill three, wound dozens
Russian strikes in several Ukrainian cities on New Year's day have killed at least three people and wounded at least 50 others.
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Russian strikes hit several buildings across several Ukrainian cities, including Kyiv on New Year's Day [Danylo Antoniuk/Anadolu Agency via Getty]

Russia's New Year assault on Ukraine left three people dead and wounded another 50 as Moscow on Sunday claimed to have thwarted Kyiv's "terror attacks" on the homeland.

The Ukrainian capital and other cities came under fire from missiles and Iranian-made drones.

The Ukrainian air force said Sunday 45 Iranian-made drones had been destroyed overnight.

Thirteen were shot down at the end of 2022 and another 32 after midnight, the air force said.

Andriy Nebitov, the head of the Kyiv police, posted on Facebook a picture of wreckage of a downed drone that featured the words "Happy New Year" in Russian.

"That is everything you need to know about the terror state and its army," he wrote.

Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy head of President Volodymyr Zelensky's office, said two people died in Kyiv and the southern region of Kherson and 50 more, including children, were injured as a result of the Russian strikes.

A 22-year-old woman was badly wounded in the western city of Khmelnytskyi and later died from her wounds, governor Sergiy Gamaliy.

On New Year's Eve, Russian artillery hit the village of Naddniprianske outside the southern city of Kherson, severely wounding a 13-year-old and his 12-year-old sister, the Ukrainian presidency said.

The Russian pounding also left the city of Kherson and the surrounding settlements without electricity on Saturday night, the presidency added.

Russian forces in November withdrew from Kherson, the only regional capital that was held by Moscow, but has continued to batter the city ever since.

In the eastern region of Donetsk, pro-Russian separatist authorities said Ukrainian shelling killed a civilian in the town of Yasynuvata.

The attacks came as President Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine enters its 11th month.

"Moral, historical rightness is on our side," Putin declared as he delivered his midnight address standing among men and women dressed in military uniform.

After a series of humiliating military defeats, Russia in October began targeting Ukraine's infrastructure, leaving millions in the cold and dark.

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'Terror attacks'

Moscow said on Sunday its New Year attacks on Ukraine targeted the pro-Western country's drone production.

Russia's defence ministry said a strike hit "the facilities of the military-industrial complex of Ukraine" which is involved in the production of drones.

"Storage facilities and launch sites" for the drones have also been destroyed, the ministry said in a statement.

"The aim of the strike was achieved," the statement said.

"The plans of the Kyiv regime to carry out terror attacks against Russia in the near future have been thwarted".

Russia has accused Ukraine of targeting its domestic military sites and infrastructure.

Russian forces on Thursday shot down a drone near Engels, a base for Russia's strategic aircraft, located hundreds of kilometres from the Ukraine border.

Russia also said on Monday it downed a drone over Engels airfield and that falling debris killed three people.

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In early December, Moscow said Ukraine's Soviet-made drones had attacked that base and another in the Ryazan region, leaving three people dead.

The Engels drone raids were the deepest reported strikes into Russian territory since the start of Moscow's offensive in Ukraine on February 24.

Kviy has a policy of not claiming responsibility for such raids.