Russia Targets Kyiv With Biggest Missile Attack in Weeks

Russian missiles streaked into Kyiv early Thursday in the biggest assault on the Ukrainian capital in weeks, injuring at least 10 people and damaging several residential buildings and industrial facilities, according to local officials.

Serhii Popko, the head of the city military administration, said air defense systems in and around Kyiv had intercepted about three dozen Russian missiles, including ballistic ones. His claim could not be independently verified. Mr. Popko added that no deaths had been reported so far.

Loud blasts jolted residents awake around 5 a.m. as air defense systems went into action. Many people rushed to take shelter in subway stations. Several orange fireballs lit up the night, apparently the result of missile interceptions.

Air raid alerts ended at 6:10 a.m. The extent of the damage was not immediately clear.

Vitali Klitschko, Kyiv’s mayor, said on Telegram that debris from missiles brought down by the air defense systems had fallen in different parts of the city, causing fires in at least three residential buildings and in parking lots. He said emergency responders had been deployed to help victims. Two people were hospitalized, Mr. Klitschko said.

In the Podilskyi district, home to industrial facilities that Russia has targeted in the past, a plume of black smoke was rising, suggesting a hit. Mr. Klitschko said a fire had broken out at a power substation in the area.

Ukrainian officials rarely confirm strikes on strategic industrial and military targets.

The assault Thursday came at a difficult time for Ukraine’s military, with Russian forces pressing ahead with ground attacks at several locations along the frontline of more than 600 miles.

Faced with a shortage of troops and ammunition, Ukraine has struggled to contain Russian assaults in its east and south. Ukrainian officials have said they would launch a counteroffensive this year, but experts say the military has yet to receive the kinds of weapons that would let it regain the initiative on the battlefield, with American aid held up in Congress.

On Wednesday, Jake Sullivan, President Biden’s national security adviser, made an unannounced trip to Kyiv in an effort to show the White House’s continued commitment to Ukraine’s defense. He urged Republican lawmakers to pass the stalled package of billions of dollars in aid.

“It has already taken too long,” Mr. Sullivan told reporters in a briefing at Ukraine’s presidential office. “And I know that, you know that.”

President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his nightly address on Wednesday that Ukraine urgently needed more air defense systems. He pointed to an attack that day on the eastern city of Kharkiv, in which five people were killed.

“Our partners have these defense systems,” Mr. Zelensky said. “And our partners need to understand that air defense must protect lives.”

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