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Russia launches 11th aerial attack at Ukraine this month, targets Kyiv

by The Kyiv Independent news desk May 20, 2023 8:58 AM 2 min read
A photograph shows a view of Kyiv through the hole in a roof of a multi-store building damaged as a result of falling debris after a massive drone attack overnight in Kyiv on May 20, 2023. (Sergei Suspinsky/AFP via Getty Images)
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Russia launched yet another drone attack overnight on Ukraine, targeting the capital, Kyiv, for the 11th time this month, Ukrainian officials said in the early hours of May 20.

All 18 drones Iranian-made Shahed-type drones launched at Kyiv after midnight on May 20 were intercepted by the city's air defenses, Ukraine's Air Force said in a statement on the Telegram messaging app. There was no information on what the drones were targeting.

Flaming debris from the intercepted drones caused a fire on the roof of a residential building in the city's Dniprovskyi District, located on the east bank of the capital, the administration earlier reported.

In the Pecherskyi District, located in central Kyiv, the windows of a residential building were damaged and in the Solomyanskyi District, located in the western part of the city, a road and vehicles also sustained damages. No casualties have been reported.

Air raid alerts were activated in the capital after midnight local time, with the Kyiv Oblast Military Administration warning on Telegram of the "threat of a drone attack" and asking that residents remain in shelters.

Two Shahed drones were also destroyed in the country's east, while another type of drone was also shot down in Ukraine's south, the Air Force said. The statement did not say where exactly the drones were shot down, but Ukraine's Eastern Air Command earlier reported on Facebook shooting down two drones over the central-eastern city of Dnipro.

The drone attacks come a day after Ukrainian air defenses shot down three out of the six cruise missiles and 18 out of the 22 drones that Russia launched at Ukraine.

It was unclear exactly what the missiles and drones that evaded Ukraine's air defense were targeting, but Russian attacks on the city of Kryvyi Rih in Dnipropetrovsk Oblast overnight on May 19 injured two people and set fire to several buildings.

Likely in anticipation for a Ukrainian counteroffensive, Russia has in recent days unleashed a series of drone and missile attacks at Ukraine, apparently to tie up and exhaust Ukrainian air defenses, including the recently-provided American Patriot missile systems.

Ukrainian officials referred to Russia's May 16 mass attack as being of “exceptional intensity," defining exceptional intensity as the “maximum number of missile attacks in the shortest time span.”

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