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Russia and Ukraine aggressions deepen

Hostilities intensify between Russia, Ukraine at turn of year

Russia Ukraine War
Russia Ukraine War

At the turn of the year, hostilities have mounted between Russia and Ukraine with the latest barrage of missile and drone attacks beginning Friday.

The Russian forces attacked Ukraine on Friday morning with 158 drones and missiles, including at least 90 air-launched cruise missiles and five Kinzhal ballistic missiles, said Valery Zaluzhny, chief commander of the armed forces of Ukraine.

At least 12 people were killed and more than 70 others wounded in the “largest missile and drone attack” on the country since the start of the conflict, said the National Police of Ukraine.

On Saturday, Ukraine’s shelling of the Russian border city of Belgorod killed more than two dozen people. The assault on Belgorod marked one of the most lethal ones on Russian territory since the beginning of the conflict. Russian officials said the death toll reached 26, including five children, after a barrage of rockets on Tuesday.

Russian air defense systems near Belgorod shot down four missiles on Tuesday, according to the Russian Defense Ministry. Over the past 24 hours, Ukraine has carried out at least 50 attacks, including shelling and explosives from drones, said regional Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Monday that Moscow would intensify strikes on military targets in Ukraine, after an unprecedented Ukrainian attack over the weekend on the Russian city of Belgorod.

On Tuesday, Russia launched almost 100 missiles of various types at Ukraine, killing at least five people and injuring 130 others, said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, adding that Russia has fired nearly 300 missiles and more than 200 Shahed combat drones against Ukraine since Dec. 29, 2023.

“No other state has ever repelled such attacks, combined ones: both drones and missiles, including air-launched ballistic missiles. Ten Kinzhal missiles have been shot down today alone,” Zelensky said in a video address.

In his new year’s speech, Zelensky vowed to boost drone production to “a million” extra in 2024, saying “the enemy will feel the wrath of domestic production.”

Meanwhile, U.S. President Joe Biden urged Congress to take “urgent action” to greenlight plans to provide more weapons for Ukraine.

In a statement Friday, Biden said, “unless Congress takes urgent action in the new year, we will not be able to continue sending the weapons and vital air defense systems Ukraine needs to protect its people. Congress must step up and act without any further delay.”

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