Russian air defenses in the Belgorod Region shot down nine missiles launched from Ukraine on Tuesday evening, according to the Ministry of Defense in Moscow.
The interceptions included two Tochka-U tactical ballistic missiles, as well as seven rockets from the ‘Olkha’ long-range artillery launchers, according to the Russian MoD.
“On January 2 of the current year, around 22:30 Moscow time, another attempt by the Kiev regime to commit a terrorist attack was stopped,” the military said, adding that the incoming fire was dealt with by the air defenses on duty.
Ukrainian artillery had attacked the town square of Belgorod city on Saturday, injuring over 100 civilians and killing 25, including children.
Ukraine has since launched several more attacks on the city and the surrounding region, using long-range rockets and drones. Another 17 ‘Olkha’ missiles were intercepted in three attacks earlier on Tuesday. Debris and the munitions that got through killed one civilian and wounded two more, according to the regional governor.
Russian air defenses intercepted and destroyed a total of 32 drones in the night between Monday and Tuesday, according to the MoD. The unmanned aerial vehicles were shot down over the Bryansk, Oryol, Kursk and Moscow regions.
A rocket strike also targeted Donetsk city in the early hours of January 1, killing four people and injuring 13. The capital of the Donetsk People’s Republic has been a frequent target of Kiev’s military since 2014.
According to a Russian security source, Saturday’s attack on Belgorod was personally ordered by Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky, organized by military intelligence head Kirill Budanov, and launched by the neo-Nazi ‘Kraken’ regiment based in Kharkov. Among the weapons used were RM-70 Vampire rocket launchers supplied to Ukraine by the Czech Republic. Moscow has also accused the US and Britain of helping plan the attack.
Russia has responded by launching drone and missile strikes on Ukrainian military industry facilities, repair shops and ammunition warehouses, including depots of weapons “delivered to the Kiev regime by Western countries,” the MoD said earlier on Tuesday. According to the mayor of the Ukrainian city of Lviv, Russian drones also destroyed the museum to Roman Shukhevich, a WWII Nazi collaborator venerated by modern Ukrainian nationalists.
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