A Russian missile strike on the Black Sea port of Odesa has resulted in one fatality and two injuries, according to officials. Additionally, blasts were reported in several regions, including Vinnytsia, Khmelnytsky, and Zhytomyr in central-western Ukraine.
Ukraine’s Air Force announced that out of the 30 missiles launched by Russia overnight, 29 were successfully intercepted. The military administration in Kyiv stated that the city experienced an unprecedented series of powerful and intense air attacks that continued. In the most recent attack, Russia utilized cruise missiles and reconnaissance drones.
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko reported a fire in a garage in the Darnytsya area, but fortunately, no casualties were reported. The head of Kyiv’s civilian military administration, Serhiy Popko, revealed that a heavy missile attack had been launched from Russian strategic bombers over the Caspian Sea. He suspected that the attack included cruise missiles and mentioned that reconnaissance drones had been deployed over Kyiv following the wave of air strikes. Another fire broke out in a non-residential building in Kyiv’s eastern Desnyansky district, but there was no immediate update on injuries.
The escalating violence has taken a toll on civilians, with at least eight reported deaths, including a five-year-old boy near Kherson, and 17 injuries as both sides traded accusations of targeting civilian areas. Ukraine’s army is said to be in an “increased state of readiness” for an anticipated counter-offensive against Russia’s invasion. Western officials have noted that Kyiv’s military capabilities, including the deployment of tanks, fighting vehicles, combat engineers, mine clearance, bridging rivers, and striking long-range targets, are coming together. They cautioned that Russian defensive lines in Ukraine are potentially formidable, guarded by extensive minefields.
The success of any Ukrainian offensive, the officials argued, should be measured not only by territorial gains but also by its impact on the Kremlin’s strategy. The cognitive effect on Russian President Vladimir Putin is deemed crucial. Meanwhile, Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba met with a Chinese diplomat in Kyiv and rejected any peace plan that involved ceding territory to Russia. However, an agreement allowing Ukraine to export millions of tonnes of grain through the Black Sea has been extended for two months, just a day before its expiration date.