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Russia“s war on Ukraine latest: Wave of attacks ahead of Victory Day holiday


(Reuters) – Russia launched its biggest swarm of drones for months against Ukraine on Monday, the eve of Russia’s May 9 Victory Day holiday celebrating the defeat of Nazi Germany, which Kyiv marked a day earlier in a new break with Moscow.


A views shows storage facilities heavily damaged by a Russian missile strike, amid Russia’s attack on Ukraine, in Odesa region, Ukraine May 8, 2023. Press Service of the Operational Command South of the Ukrainian Armed Forces/Handout via REUTERS

* Kyiv’s mayor said Russia had fired 60 Iranian-made kamikaze drones at Ukrainian targets, including 36 at the capital, all of which had been shot down. However, debris hit apartments and other buildings, injuring at least five people on the ground.

* A food warehouse was set ablaze by a missile in the Black Sea port city of Odesa, where officials reported three people wounded.

* Russian artillery shelling wounded eight people, including a nine-year-old boy, in two villages in Ukraine’s southern region of Kherson on Monday, regional officials said.

* The military said 16 rockets had hit the Kharkiv, Kherson, Mykolaiv and Odesa regions in the last 24 hours, in addition to 61 strikes and 52 rocket salvos on Ukrainian positions and populated areas.

* Russia has intensified shelling of Bakhmut hoping to take it by Tuesday – Russia’s Victory Day holiday, Ukraine’s top general in charge of the defence of the besieged city said, vowing to do everything to prevent it.

* In a new break with Moscow, Ukraine marked the anniversary of the World War Two victory over Nazi Germany on Monday, rather than Tuesday, in line with the practice of its Western allies. President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said he had signed a decree to officially change the date in future.

* Russia’s Wagner mercenary group appeared to ditch plans to withdraw from Bakhmut, saying it had been promised more arms and suggesting it may keep up the assault on what Russia sees as a stepping stone in the Donbas region.

* Some 1,679 people, including 660 children, have been evacuated from areas near the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant, a Moscow-installed official in the Russia-controlled parts of the Zaporizhzhia region of Ukraine said.

* Russia has effectively stopped the Black sea grain deal, which expires on May 18, by refusing to register incoming vessels, Ukraine’s reconstruction ministry said on Monday. Moscow has threatened to quit the agreement, which is meant to help ease a global food crisis.

* The European Union’s executive has proposed blacklisting several Chinese companies and curbing exports to nations seen as involved in bypassing Russia trade restrictions under new sanctions imposed on Moscow for the war against Ukraine.

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