Ukraine defended itself against the massive airstrikes, which Russia described as retaliation

Ukraine resisted massive airstrikes, Russia called them retaliation

The aftermath of a Russian missile attack on Kiev, March 9, 2023. 

Kyiv – At least six civilians in Ukraine were killed in today's large-scale Russian airstrikes. Another three people were killed when Russian forces shelled a public transport stop in Kherson in the south of the embattled country, according to Ukrainian authorities. Air attacks in many places caused power outages and temporary disconnection of the Zaporizhia Nuclear Power Plant from the external grid. Russia described its strikes as retaliation for incidents in Russia's Bryansk region, which it blamed on Ukrainian saboteurs in early March. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy speaks of terror against the Ukrainian population, while Russian-backed separatists from Moldova's Transnistria have accused the Ukrainian secret service of plotting to assassinate their leader.

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 Ukraine resisted massive airstrikes, Russia called them retaliation

Ukraine resisted massive airstrikes, Russia called them retaliation

Ukraine resisted massive airstrikes, Russia called them retaliation

Ukraine resisted massive airstrikes, Russia flagged them in retaliation

Sirens rang out across Ukraine this night, and explosions were heard, among other things, in Kyiv, where, according to the mayor, Vitaliy Klitschko, two people had to be taken to the hospital. According to Ukrainian officials, at least five people were killed in the Lviv region of western Ukraine, where Russian missiles hit a residential area, and one person was killed in the Dnipropetrovsk region. The Russians also hit residential areas in Odessa or Kharkiv region.

According to the Chief of the Ukrainian General Staff Valery Zaluzhny, Russia sent 81 rockets and missiles to Ukraine overnight, including Kinzhal hypersonic missiles and eight Iranian-made drones. According to Zalužný, Ukrainian air defense managed to destroy 34 missiles and four drones.

Ukraine's second-largest city, Kharkiv, was left without electricity and water after the attacks, its mayor, Ihor Terehov, said. According to Kliček, 40 percent of customers in Kyiv found themselves without heating. During the Russian shelling, the last line that fed the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant was also damaged. The International Atomic Energy Agency called it a major threat to nuclear safety. After a few hours, the Ukrainian nuclear company Enerhoatom reported that power to the power plant had been restored.

The Russian Ministry of Defense claims that today's airstrikes were carried out by the Russian army in response to “terrorist acts carried out by the Kiev regime in the Bryansk region” in early March, when, according to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Ukrainian saboteurs fired on civilians, which Kiev has previously denied. Likewise, Ukraine denied today's claim by the Russian Ministry of Defense that Russian night airstrikes targeted Ukrainian military infrastructure.

Russian-backed separatists from Moldavian Transnistria today accused the Ukrainian secret service SBU of preparing attacks on a number of their representatives, including the assassination of separatist leader Vadim Krasnoselsky. The Ukrainian secret service described the accusations as a provocation staged by the Kremlin.

Polish Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak announced today that Poland has handed Ukraine the remaining ten of the promised 14 German-made Leopard 2 tanks. He also informed that the Ukrainian soldiers had finished training in Poland to operate these machines. According to Slovak Defense Minister Jaroslav Nada, Poland has expressed its willingness to proceed together with Slovakia in handing over surplus MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine. Bratislava has previously talked about the possibility of providing unused MiGs to the Ukrainians, who have been facing Russian military aggression for more than a year.