Over 200,000 without power following Russian attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure

Over 200,000 people in Ukraine’s eastern Kharkiv region were left without electricity on Thursday following a barrage of Russian missile strikes on the country’s infrastructure overnight, according to Oleskiy Kuleba, the deputy head of the Office of the President of Ukraine.

State-owned national grid operator Ukrenergo said that Russia’s attack had targeted power stations in the Kharkiv, Kyiv, Odesa, Zaporizhzhia and Lviv regions of the country, which led to emergency power cuts in Kharkiv and the surrounding area.

“The occupiers have once again decided to fight against taps and electricity,” Kuleba said after accusing Russia of attempting to “destroy Kharkiv's infrastructure and plunge the city into darkness”.

Kharkiv Governor Oleh Synyehubov reported that at least 10 strikes had been launched on the region’s energy facilities, while Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov announced that the city’s metro system would not operate for several hours as a result of the attacks.

The Ukrainian Air Force said in its morning update on Thursday that it had downed 52 of the 87 missiles and drones launched at Ukrainian targets by Russia overnight, most of which, it said, had been targeting the western Lviv region.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said the attacks showed how “critical” Ukraine’s need for increased air defences was and warned that the West’s failure to adequately arm Ukraine would give Russia a “global licence for terror”.

While Russia’s Defence Ministry made no comment on the strikes on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, state news agency RIA Novosti quoted a member of what it called the pro-Russian “underground” as saying that a group of Romanian “mercenaries” had been killed in a Russian attack on Ukraine’s Odesa region.

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