Russia launches 45 drones in mass barrage of Ukraine as Kyiv continues war cabinet reshuffle

Burnt out cars after a Russian attack Saturday on a residential neighborhood in Kharkiv, Ukraine. (AP Photo/Yevhen Titov)

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russian forces launched 45 drones over Ukraine Sunday in a five-and-a-half-hour barrage, officials said, as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy continued the reshuffle of his war cabinet as the war enters its third year.

In a statement, the Ukrainian air force said it had shot down 40 of the Iranian-made Shahed drones over nine different regions, including on the outskirts of the country’s capital, Kyiv.


The five-and-a-half-hour attack targeted agricultural facilities and coastal infrastructure, officials for Ukraine’s southern defense forces wrote on Telegram. They said that a strike in the Mykolaiv region had injured one person, sparking a fire and damaging nearby residential buildings.

Another person was injured in Ukraine’s Dnipropetrovsk region when a blaze broke out due to falling debris from a destroyed drone, said the head of the region’s military administration, Serhiy Lysak. Border police in Moldova also said Sunday that fragments of a “Shahed-type drone” were found near the southern town of Etulia close to the border with Ukraine, but that the debris posed no danger to communities nearby.

“There is a suspicion that the detected drone debris is one of the drones shot down by the Ukrainian anti-aircraft system,” the border police said in a statement, referencing overnight attacks launched on Friday by Russian forces on Ukraine’s Izmail region. The distance between Etulia and Izmail is about 40 kilometers (25 miles) as the crow flies. Authorities said access to the impact site has been restricted.

Moldovan President Maia Sandu responded to the incident by saying in a post on the social media platform X, that “Russia’s war on Ukraine hits close to home in Moldova — again.” “The discovery of Shahed drone debris in southern Moldova today serves as another stark reminder of the grim reality we face,” she said. “Russia’s aggression endangers the entire continent. Support for Ukraine must continue.”

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