At least 20 people were killed and 73 wounded Saturday, including children, in the southeastern Ukraine city of Dnipro where a Russian missile strike destroyed a section of a nine-story apartment building, regional Governor Valentyn Reznichenko said.
Infrastructure was also damaged in the Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk, and Odesa regions, as well as in Kharkiv and Kyiv by the wave of Russian missiles.
“Debris clearance is still ongoing. . . It’s not yet known how many people are under the rubble. Unfortunately, the death toll is growing every hour,” President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.
Local authorities reported that Ukraine’s air defense downed Russian missiles in Mykolaiv, Odesa, Kyiv, Khmelnytskyi, Vinnytsia, and Ivano-Frankivsk. Ukraine’s top military commander said his forces shot down 21 of the 33 cruise missiles Russia fired.
The strikes caused emergency blackouts in multiple regions, such as the Kharkiv region and the city of Kharkiv in the northeast — Ukraine’s second-largest city. In the western Lviv Oblast, the governor, Maksym Kozytskyi, said there might be interruptions in the power and water supply because of missile damage.
Another energy facility was hit in the western Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast, according to Governor Svitlana Onyschuk.
A few hours after Saturday’s missile strikes, Britain promised to send Challenger 2 tanks to Ukraine to help repel Russia’s invasion.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s office said the tanks would be sent in the coming weeks, with about 30 self-propelled AS90 guns to follow. He said training for Ukrainian troops will begin soon on how to use the guns and the tanks.
The Challenger 2 is Britain’s main battle tank. It is designed to attack other tanks and has been in service since 1994, according to the army.
Britain’s Defense Ministry said Sunday there is a possibility that Russia will extend the age limit for military conscription from 27 to 30 in time for the Spring 2023 draft, a move that would enable Russian forced to increase its enrollment by at least 30%.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has said he supports the move, according to the British ministry, which added that “Russian officials are likely sounding out public reactions.”
Some information for this report came from Agence France-Presse, Reuters, and The Associated Press.