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Russia launches ‘massive’ overnight attack on Ukrainian energy infrastructure

Russia launches 'massive' overnight attack on Ukrainian energy infrastructure Rescuers work at a damaged building after a Russian missile attack in Ukraine's Kyiv region (AP Photo)
By Associated Press
Jun 22, 2024 11:08 AM

Ukraine reported Saturday that Russia had launched a substantial overnight attack on its energy infrastructure in the western and southern regions of the country.

According to the energy ministry, “Ukrenergo facilities in Zaporizhzhia and Lviv regions suffered equipment damage,” resulting in two employees being injured and hospitalized in Zaporizhzhia.

This incident marks “the eighth major combined attack on energy infrastructure facilities,” in the past three months.

Ukraine faces energy crisis

Since the Russian invasion began over two years ago, targeted missile and drone strikes have severely disrupted Ukraine’s electricity generation capabilities, leading Kyiv to implement blackouts and seek energy imports from the European Union.

Just days ago, Ukrainian authorities reported significant damage to energy infrastructure, including a power station, during another overnight attack that left seven employees wounded.

DTEK, Ukraine’s largest private energy company, confirmed that the attacks caused “serious damage” at one of its plants.

Zelensky calls for help amid winter crisis

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy stated that Russian attacks have decimated half of Ukraine’s energy capacity.

Zelenskyy emphasized the urgent need to equip all hospitals and schools in Ukraine with solar panels “as soon as possible” to mitigate dependence on traditional energy sources.

“We are taking every measure to ensure that Russian attempts to use heat and electricity as leverage against us are unsuccessful,” Zelensky remarked on Thursday.

Maxim Timchenko, CEO of DTEK, warned of an impending crisis this winter unless Ukraine’s Western allies provide military aid to safeguard the energy network.

US to supply air-defense system to Ukraine

Zelensky has repeatedly called on Ukraine’s allies to supply additional air defense systems to protect critical infrastructure.

U.S. National Security Council spokesman John Kirby announced on Thursday that Washington would prioritize delivering anti-aircraft missiles to Kyiv, ahead of other countries with pending orders.

In response, Zelenskyy expressed profound gratitude for the U.S. decision, highlighting that these added air-defense capabilities will safeguard Ukrainian cities and civilians.

Last Updated:  Jun 22, 2024 11:08 AM