Russia strikes Kyiv, multiple Ukrainian cities; many dead

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russia unleashed a lethal barrage of strikes against multiple Ukrainian cities Monday, smashing civilian targets including downtown Kyiv where at least eight people were killed.

The intense, hours-long attack marked a sudden military escalation by Moscow. It came a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin called a Saturday explosion on the huge bridge connecting Russia to its annexed territory of Crimea a “terrorist act” masterminded by Ukrainian special services.

Keep scrolling for photos from Monday’s attacks

At least eight people were killed and 24 were injured in just one of the Kyiv strikes, according to preliminary information, said Rostyslav Smirnov, an adviser to the Ukrainian ministry of internal affairs.

The sustained barrage on major cities hit residential areas and critical infrastructure facilities alike, portending a major surge in the war amid a successful Ukrainian counteroffensive in recent weeks. It came a few hours before Putin was due to hold a meeting with his security council, as Moscow’s war in Ukraine approaches its eight-month milestone and the Kremlin reels from humiliating battlefield setbacks in areas it is trying to annex.

Blasts struck in the capital’s Shevchenko district, a large area in the center of Kyiv that includes the historic old town as well as several government offices, Mayor Vitali Klitschko said.

Some of the strikes hit near the government quarter in the symbolic heart of the capital, where Parliament and other major landmarks are located. A glass tower housing offices was significantly damaged, most of its blue-tinted windows blown out.

<p>People receive medical treatment at the scene of Russian shelling, in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 10, 2022. Two explosions rocked Kyiv early Monday following months of relative calm in the Ukrainian capital. </p>

AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky

People receive medical treatment at the scene of Russian shelling, in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 10, 2022. Two explosions rocked Kyiv early Monday following months of relative calm in the Ukrainian capital. 

Residents were seen on the streets with blood on their clothes and hands. A young man wearing a blue jacket sat on the ground as a medic wrapped a bandage around his head. A woman with bandages wrapped around her head had blood all over the front of her blouse. Several cars were also damaged or completely destroyed. Air raid sirens sounded repeatedly across the country and in Kyiv.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russian forces launched dozens of missiles and Iranian-built drones against Ukraine.

The General Staff of the Ukraine Armed Forces said 75 missiles were fired against Ukrainian targets, with 41 of them neutralized by air defenses.

The targets were civilian areas and energy facilities in 10 cities, Zelenskyy said in a video address. “(The Russians) chose such a time and such targets on purpose to inflict the most damage,” Zelenskyy said. Read more:

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