Russian missiles struck Kyiv on Sunday for first time in more than a month — with one of the weapons flying “critically low” over a nuclear-power plant, Ukraine said.
“The Russians still do not understand that even the slightest fragment of a rocket that enters a working power unit can cause a nuclear catastrophe,” wrote Energoatom, Ukraine’s state nuclear-power company, in a statement Sunday on Telegram.
Ukraine’s military said it was able to shoot down one of the missiles around 6 a.m. local time and that at least one person was hospitalized from the attacks on its railway infrastructure.
The Kremlin said it destroyed Ukrainian tanks and other armored vehicles that were being hidden at a railway repair site.
A Ukrainian railway official acknowledged the attacks destroyed the eastern Kyiv facility, but said no military vehicles were at the site.
Initial reports show Moscow launched the missiles from the Caspian Sea, according to Ukraine’s Air Force.
The attack, the first in weeks on Kyiv, put an end to a somewhat return-to-normal in Kyiv, where Russian troops largely fled as part of their new strategy to focus on the Donbas region.
In the wake of the strikes, presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak said the West still must do more to halt Russia’s offensive.
“The Kremlin resorts to new insidious attacks. Today’s missile strikes at Kyiv have only one goal – kill as many as possible,” Podolyak tweeted.
Fighting is still raging in the eastern part of the country, and Ukraine officials said Saturday they have been able to retake some of the bombarded city of Sievierodonetsk, which became a recent strategic target of Russia’s.
But the Kremlin claims that the Ukrainians are retreating to Sievierodonetsk’s sister city of Lysychansk after suffering “critical losses” in the battle for the city’s control.
Meanwhile, Bridget Brink, the US ambassador to Ukraine, said Saturday that she joined Ukraine’s First Lady Olena Zelenska to mourn the 261 Ukrainian children who have been killed in Russian attacks, which she called “barbaric and unconscionable.”