Russian attacks on peaceful Ukrainian cities continue. Kyiv, Kharkiv…What’s next?

By Manal Abdel Fattah

After a 44-day pause in missile strikes, the Russian Aerospace Forces overnight Thursday launched a barrage of missiles on the Ukrainian capital and the Kyiv region, where civilian infrastructure was affected, including residential buildings, kindergartens, and other educational facilities. Russia launched two ballistic/aeroballistic missiles (Iskander-M (KN-23)/Kh-47M2 Kinzhal), as well as 29 Kh-101/Kh-555 cruise missiles.

The air raid alert in the Ukrainian capital lasted about three hours and was a bit peculiar this time as Kyiv turned out to be the Kremlin’s only target. Eleven Tu-95MS bombers went airborne in the early hours of Thursday.

Two warplanes simulated missile launches to confuse Ukrainian air defenses, while nine others created the illusion of a “second wave”. Twenty-nine missiles flew along quite an atypical route through the Bryansk region of the Russian Federation, maneuvering over the Rivne, Zhytomyr and Khmelnytsky regions of Ukraine, after which they flew back toward Kyiv.

Given the unusual route, the suggestion is that the Russians are trying out a new tactic in a bid to deplete Ukraine’s air defenses. As a result of the strike, more than 15 people, including children, sustained injuries.

Such attacks once again demonstrate to the world that the Russian dictator cannot stop on a spree of killing the civilian population of Ukraine. On March 20, the Russian Aerospace Forces launched a missile strike on one of the districts of Kharkiv, as a result of which five people were killed and more than 10 were injured. Another five are considered missing.

It was peaceful neighborhoods that were affected – residential buildings and a furniture, paint and varnish workshop.

Russian missiles deliberately target civilians, which is the best argument in favor of recognizing Russia as a terrorist state.

Putin kills Ukrainians on a daily basis. Unless the West gets rid of the illusion about the true nature of Russia, Russia will commit similar crimes in Europe.

U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink responded to the Russian strike on Kyiv by asking a rhetorical question: “Russia’s answer to yesterday’s gathering in Kyiv of NSAs from countries around the world to discuss Zelensky’s peace formula? A ‘Khinzhal’ hypersonic missile to Kyiv at 5:00 a.m., injuring 10 civilians including a child. Thank you to Ukraine’s brave air defenders.”

President Volodymyr Zelensky said: “Kharkiv needs the sufficient number of air defense systems. Sumy region requires air defense, as does Chernihiv region and all our other regions suffering from Russian terror.

Partners need to understand that air defense must protect life.”

Putin understands only the language of force: strengthening Ukrainian air defense capabilities and therefore rendering missile and drone attacks futile is the only way to prevent the recurrence of such tragedies.

In the 21st century, Russia is killing Ukrainian civilians just because they are Ukrainians. The victims of Russian missiles and drones are women, children, and the elderly.

This is genocide in its classic sense.

The supply of additional air defense systems should strengthen the protection of Ukrainian Skier

Emhancing Ukraine’s air defenses is the basis for a peaceful European future.

Russia is again trying to penetrate air defense over Ukraine and inflict as much catastrophic destruction as possible.

The same fate awaits other countries that will remain under a constant threat from the Kremlin if the West does not increase assistance now.

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