Russian missiles hit Kyiv, Putin issues threat

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Russian missiles hit Kyiv, Putin issues threat

Russia's Defense Ministry said on Sunday that tanks and other armored vehicles supplied to Ukraine by Eastern European countries had been destroyed by Russian forces in a barrage of missile strikes on the Ukrainian capital, reported DW, quoting news agencies AFP, AP, dpa and Reuters.

It said high-precision, long-range air-launched missiles were used in the strikes on the outskirts of Kyiv, with T-72 tanks among the weaponry hit in the attacks.

The damage has not been immediately confirmed by Ukraine's military.

The Ukrainian air forces said in a statement, however, that Russia had launched missiles at Kyiv from Tu-95 aircraft from the Caspian Sea. Ukrainian officials also said Russian missiles had hit railway infrastructure sites in the capital.

Earlier on Sunday, Kyiv's mayor, Vitali Klitschko, had said Kyiv had been hit by several explosions in the Darnytsky and Dniprovsky districts of the city. The missile attacks are the first such strikes on the capital since April 28.

A Russian cruise missile that was possibly aimed at the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, flew over the South Ukraine Nuclear Plant at a dangerously low altitude on Sunday, the state nuclear power operator Energoatom has said.

Accusing Russia of “nuclear terrorism,” Energoatom wrote on Telegram that Moscow's invading forces "still do not understand that even the smallest fragment of a missile hitting a working power unit can cause a nuclear catastrophe and radiation leak."

The report has not yet been independently verified.

The facility, also known as the Pivdennoukrainska plant, is located 350 kilometers (220 miles) south of the capital. It is Ukraine's second-largest nuclear power plant.

In April 1986, Ukraine, then a Soviet republic, was the site of a major nuclear catastrophe when a reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant went into meltdown. The disaster is considered the worst-ever such incident in the world in terms of costs and casualties.

Counterattacks carried out by Ukrainian forces in the eastern city of Sievierodonetsk might be negating some of the advances made by attacking Russian troops, Britain's Ministry of Defence has said in an intelligence update.

"Over the last 24 hours, Ukrainian forces have counterattacked in the contested city of Sievierodonetsk in eastern Ukraine, likely blunting the operational momentum Russian forces previously gained through concentrating combat units and firepower," the update says.

According to the update, Russia is using some soldiers from the reserve of Russian-led separatist forces of the self-declared Luhansk People’s Republic in its clearance operations in the city. It said these troops were less well-equipped and more poorly trained than Russian army units and were likely being deployed to limit casualties among regular Russian military personnel.

The governor of the Luhansk region, Serhiy Haidai, said on Sunday that the city was now divided in half between Ukrainian and Russian forces after Russian troops were forced back from some areas they previously held.

Meanwhile, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Russia will respond to the West delivering long-range missiles to Ukraine.

His remarks come after the US pledged to supply Kyiv with M142 systems armed with precisions-guided missiles. The range of the missiles, according to media reports, would be between 70 to 80 kilometers (43.5 to 50 miles).

In comments broadcast on Sunday, Putin said the systems were "nothing new" and their range depended on the missiles that the US decided to provide.

"But, if they will be delivered, we will draw appropriate conclusions and use our own weapons, of which we have enough, to strike objects that we haven't struck before," Putin told Russia's state broadcaster.

The Russian president did not specify which targets he had in mind.

Russian missiles hit Kyiv, Putin issues threat

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