The capital city of Ukraine, Kyiv, was hit by a Russian aerial attack on Tuesday, which involved drones, cruise, and ballistic missiles. A Ukrainian military official described the early morning attack as “exceptional,” with Moscow firing the most missiles in the shortest amount of time.
Serhiy Popko, head of Kyiv’s city military administration, stated that the attack was exceptional in its density, with the maximum number of attack missiles in the shortest period of time. Neither the number of Russian missiles or drones used nor the extent of possible damage or casualties are known.
Air raid alerts sounded across Ukraine as the Russian attack began. The majority of enemy targets in Kyiv airspace were detected and destroyed based on preliminary information, Popko said.
Kyiv’s Mayor, Vitali Klitschko, reported that three people were injured and a large building was damaged. In the Solomyanskyi district, explosions were reported, and debris fell onto Shevchenkivskyi’s zoo. Falling debris also set several cars ablaze in Solomyanskyi.
Klitschko warned people to stay in shelters as air defense systems repelled a drone attack in Boryspil, a city just southeast of Kyiv that is home to the capital’s main passenger airport and is now closed. In all regions of the country, air raid alerts were sounded due to a threat of missile attacks from Russia, according to the Kyiv Independent.
In Kyiv, witnesses reported hearing several explosions that sounded like air defense systems. The attacks took place as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy returned to Ukraine following a trip to Europe, where he received new pledges of military support from allies in Rome, Berlin, Paris, and London.
Zelenskyy described the new weapons pledged by the Europeans as “important and powerful,” saying in a video address from a train taking him back to Kyiv that they would provide newer and more powerful weapons for the front and more protection for the Ukrainian people, as well as greater political support.
As a result of the promise of new military hardware, the Kremlin stated that it did not believe it would change the war’s course. Russia annexed Crimea in 2014 and supported separatist forces in eastern Ukraine, starting a conflict that has claimed over 14,000 lives.