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Russia continues to launch additional assaults against Ukraine.
Europe Ukraine

Russia continues to launch additional assaults against Ukraine.

Ukrainian officials reported that on Saturday, two Russian missiles struck central Kharkiv, resulting in injuries to at least 21 individuals. This attack is part of a recent trend of reciprocal aerial attacks between the two countries.

The aggression by Russia towards Kharkiv occurred following a Ukrainian bombing on Saturday targeting Belgorod, a Russian city located near the Ukraine border.

According to the governor of the Belgorod region, Vyacheslav Gladkov, the Defense Ministry of Russia reported that the Ukrainian attacks on Saturday resulted in the deaths of 21 individuals, including three children, and left 110 others injured.

On Saturday, Russia asked for a meeting of the U.N. Security Council to discuss what it perceives as Ukraine’s untargeted assaults on Belgorod. Russia also accused Ukraine of utilizing cluster bombs. However, no further details were provided and The Associated Press was unable to confirm these allegations.

The Defense Ministry of Russia declared on social media that this crime will not be left unpunished.

Security Council meets

On Friday, the Security Council of the United Nations convened due to a request from Ukraine and 36 other member nations. The members of the Security Council expressed their disapproval of Russia’s intense attack.

There have been frequent drone strikes on cities in western Russia starting in May. Officials from Russia attribute this to Ukraine, although authorities in Kyiv seldom admit to being responsible for these attacks.

According to the state-run RIA news agency, Maria Zakharova, a spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry, stated that the terrorist attack in Belgorod will be discussed in proceedings at the U.N. Security Council. Russia has requested a meeting of the Security Council.

Kyiv has not yet released an official statement, however, according to unnamed sources quoted by Ukrainian news outlet RBC-Ukraine, Ukrainian forces have reportedly struck military objectives in Belgorod in response to the extensive Russian attack on Ukrainian cities on Friday.

On Saturday, Russia said it downed 32 Ukrainian drones. In Moscow, officials said air defenses shot down drones over Moscow, Bryansk, Oryol and Kursk regions. In a statement, the Defense Ministry reported a number of casualties, including a child.

Last Friday, Russia launched its largest air attack since February 2022, when they invaded Ukraine. According to Ukrainian authorities, at least 41 civilians were killed and over 160 were wounded in the attack. The number of people trapped under the rubble is still unknown, as Russia carried out 158 missile and drone strikes across Ukraine.

On Saturday, there were ongoing Russian attacks using missiles and drones. The strikes targeted Kharkiv, Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, and Chernihiv, resulting in the deaths of three individuals. Ukraine also claimed to have shot down Iranian-produced Shahed drones in the regions of Kherson, Khmelnytskyi, and Mykolaiv.

Following the extensive attack on Friday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy declared that Ukraine is currently engaged in a fight for its survival.

Zelenskyy stated that any attack from Russian terrorists will be met with a response. He also believes that terrorism does not benefit when targeting innocent people.

According to the daily intelligence report from the British Defense Ministry, there has been a significant increase in the number of Russian casualties in Ukraine, including both fatalities and injuries. This increase is approximately 300% per day compared to the previous year. The Ukrainian government provided this information to the British ministry.

According to the British government, the rise can be linked to the weakening of Russia’s military and its shift towards a larger, lower quality army due to the call-up of reservists in September 2022.

According to the report, it is estimated that it would take Russia between five and 10 years to reconstruct its well-trained military units.

The British government stated that if the current rate of casualties persists, Russia will have over 500,000 soldiers killed or injured by 2025, after three years of conflict.

According to the British ministry, the Soviet Union experienced 70,000 losses during the nine-year Soviet Afghan War.

The leading Russian diplomat in Poland has stated that Russia will not offer any clarifications regarding an unknown entity that briefly entered Poland’s airspace, unless there is evidence that the object was a Russian missile.

Poland’s defense forces reported on Friday that an unidentified object entered the country’s airspace from Ukraine and traveled 40 kilometers (approximately 25 miles) before disappearing from radars a few minutes later. According to General Wiesław Kukuła, head of the Polish armed forces, it is highly likely that the object was a Russian missile.

The Foreign Ministry of Poland requested the presence of Russia’s charge d’affaires in Warsaw, Andrei Ordash, and asked for clarification. Russia dismissed Poland’s allegations as “baseless.”

According to RIA Novosti, Ordash stated that no explanations will be provided until concrete evidence is presented, as the accusations are unsupported.

The sources for this report include The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse, and Reuters.

In this photo taken from video released by the Russia Emergency Situations Ministry's Telegram channel on Dec. 30, 2023, firefighters extinguish burning cars after shelling in Belgorod, Russia.

On December 30, 2023, firefighters were seen extinguishing burning cars in Belgorod, Russia after shelling, in a video released by the Russia Emergency Situations Ministry’s Telegram channel.