Explosions Rock center of the capital of Ukraine, damaged several blocks – GNT NEWS

Waves of suicide drones packed with explosives hit Ukraine’s capital as families prepared to start the week early on Monday, with blasts reverberating across Kiev, setting buildings on fire and sending people into shelters.

The central Shevchenko district of the capital was among the affected areas, with damaged apartment blocks and a non-residential building on fire, Kyiv Mayor Vitaly Klitschko said.

An Associated Press photographer outside capturing Kiev’s morning scenes captured one of the drones on camera, its triangular wing and pointed warhead clearly visible against the blue sky. The drones came in several waves and buzzed overhead with the angry hum of their engines.

There was no information about casualties. The targets of the drones were not immediately clear, but Russian strikes over the past week have hit infrastructure, including power facilities.

The blasts came from the same central district of Kyiv where a week ago a missile hit a children’s playground and an intersection near the main buildings of Kyiv National University.

Posts on social media showed a fire in the area of ​​the apparent strike, with black smoke billowing in the early hours of the morning.

Russian forces attacked Kiev with Iranian Shahed drones, wrote Andrii Yermak, the head of the Ukrainian president’s office, in a post on the Telegram social network. Russia has repeatedly used so-called suicide drones in recent weeks to target urban centers and infrastructure, including power plants.

Attacks in central Kiev have become rare in recent months after Russian forces failed to capture the capital at the start of the war. Last week’s early-morning strikes were the first explosions heard in central Kiev in months, putting Kiev, like the rest of the country, back on edge as the war approaches nine months. Monday’s explosions appeared to continue what many fear could become a more common occurrence in urban centers.

Smoke rises over the site of Russian shelling in Kiev, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 17, 2022, after several explosions rocked Kiev in the early hours of the morning. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)

Russian President Vladimir Putin said last week’s strikes were in retaliation for the bombing of a bridge connecting the Crimean peninsula to the Russian mainland. Putin is to blame Ukraine for organizing the explosion, which halted traffic across the bridge and limited Moscow’s ability to use the bridge to supply Russian troops in the occupied regions of southern Ukraine.

The attack on Kiev comes due to the intensification of fighting in the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk in recent days, as well as the continuation of the Ukrainian counter-offensive in the south near Kherson and Zaporozhye. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy he said last night in his evening address that heavy fighting is taking place around the towns of Bakhmut and Soledar in the Donetsk region. The regions of Donetsk and Luhansk make up the bulk of the industrial east known as Donbas and were two of four regions annexed by Russia in September in violation of international law.

On Sunday, the Russian-backed regime in the Donetsk region said Ukraine had shelled its central administration building in a direct hit. No casualties reported.

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