Missiles, exploding drones again hit Ukraine's power, water

Explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine's capital as families were preparing to start their week early October 17, 2022. [AP Photo]

Air strikes cut power and water supplies in a repeatedly bombed Ukrainian city and pounded energy and infrastructure facilities elsewhere in the country on Tuesday, part of an apparent quickening effort by Russia to drive Ukrainians into the cold and dark as winter bites.

All of Zhytomyr, a city with military bases 140 kilometers (85 miles) west of the capital, was without electricity and water after a double missile strike on an energy facility said Mayor Serhiy Sukhomlyn. Hospitals were left running on backup power, he said.

Missile strikes also hit an energy facility in Kyiv and severely damaged another in the south-central city of Dnipro, authorities said.

As well as missiles, Russia is mixing up its modes of attack.

Suicide drones — so-called because they slam into targets and explode — set ablaze an infrastructure facility in the partly Russian-occupied southern Zaporizhzhia region, the regional governor said.

Air-defense S-300 missiles that Russia has been repurposing as ground-attack weapons as its stocks are being depleted were used to strike the southern city of Mykolaiv, killing a man whose body was found in the debris of a two-story building, the region’s governor said.

In the eastern city of Kharkiv, rockets were used to hit an industrial area. The regional governor said the eight rockets were fired from across the nearby border with Russia.

Waves of explosives-laden suicide drones had also struck Kyiv on Monday, hitting energy facilities and setting ablaze and partly collapsing buildings. One drone slammed into a four-story residential building, killing four people.

Ukraine says Russia is getting thousands of drones from Iran. The Iranian-made Shahed drones that nose-dived with their explosive charges into targets in Kyiv on Monday have also been widely used elsewhere in recent weeks.

In the past week alone, more than 100 of the drones have slammed into power plants, sewage treatment plants, residential buildings, bridges and other targets in urban areas, Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry said.

In a televised address on Monday night, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said Russia is using kamikaze drones because it is losing the war, now nearing its eighth full month.

“Russia doesn’t have any chance on the battlefield, and it tries to compensate for its military defeats with terror,” he said. “Why this terror? To put pressure on us, on Europe, on the entire world.”