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Key developments on Aug. 15:
- Russian mass missile attack kills 3, injures 27
- Russian missiles fired at Ukraine have 30 foreign-made components, says Yermak
- Russian forces attempt cross-border raid in Chernihiv Oblast
- Zelensky visits troops southeast
- Military reports Russian forces decrease frequency of attacks in east
Russia launched another mass missile attack on Ukraine overnight on Aug. 15, killing three people, injuring 27, and damaging civilian facilities in eight Ukrainian regions, according to the authorities.
The attack damaged civilian facilities in eight Ukrainian regions, including residential buildings, educational institutions, and a hospital, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said.
Western Ukrainian cities were the main target of the attack, as two cruise missiles struck an industrial site in Lutsk, 85 kilometers east of the border with Poland, killing three people, according to Volyn Oblast Governor Yurii Pohuliaiko.
Later that day, the Swedish ball bearing maker SKF confirmed its factory in Lutsk was damaged in the missile strike. All three killed people were its workers.
Some 150 kilometers southeast, in Lviv, a missile hit the backyard of a kindergarten, damaging around 100 buildings, including a medical college and industrial facilities, according to the regional governor Maksym Kozytskyi.
The authorities said that 15 people were injured in the Russian attacks on the region.
Kozytskyi later said that over 120 residential buildings and houses were damaged in Lviv Oblast.
In the town of Smila in central Cherkasy Oblast, Russian missiles struck an enterprise and a medical facility, according to Governor Ihor Taburets.
Russian forces fired 28 air and sea-based cruise missiles, including 20 Kh-101/Kh-555 missiles, four Kh-22, and four Kalibr missiles, the Air Force reported on Aug. 15.
Air Defense downed 16 Kh-101/Kh-555 and Kalibr missiles, according to the report.
Russian troops also launched eight repurposed air-defense S-300/S-400 missiles against Dnipropetrovsk and Zaporizhzhia oblasts in the east and south, according to the air force.
In the city of Dnipro, Russia struck an industrial enterprise, causing a fire covering over 800 square meters, the regional governor Serhii Lysak reported.
Air defense was also working in Kyiv, Khmelnytskyi, and Ivano-Frankivsk oblasts, according to the regional governors.
The air raid alert was activated nationwide at around 4 a.m. local time.
The Kh-101 cruise missiles Russian forces used against Ukraine on Aug. 15 contain about 30 foreign-made components, Presidential Office head Andriy Yermak reported following the attack.
He also said the missiles were manufactured by Russia in April this year.
It’s not the first foreign electronics found in Russian missiles and loitering munitions used to attack Ukraine. Russia is evading sanctions on importing dual-use electronics and goods, but importing them through Moscow-affiliated entities in third countries.
Russian forces reportedly attempt cross-border raid in north
The Joint Forces Commander Serhii Naiev reported on Aug. 15 that two armed Russian “sabotage groups” numbering a total of 12 soldiers were prevented from attempting a cross-border raid in northern Chernihiv Oblast.
Ukrainian troops immediately shelled the Russian saboteurs, forcing them to retreat. The Russians suffered losses in wounded and killed. Naiev hasn’t specified the numbers.
Chernihiv Oblast is located on Ukraine’s northern border with Russia and Belarus. It was partially occupied during the initial phase of the Russian full-scale invasion in late February 2022. The region was liberated in early April 2022 after the Russian forces failed during the Battle of Kyiv.
Since then, Russian forces have regularly shelled the region from across the border.
Zelensky visits troops conducting counteroffensive southeast
President Volodymyr Zelensky visited troops of combat units deployed in the Melitopol direction in Zaporizhzhia Oblast on Aug. 15, according to the presidential office.
"Our warriors are able to provide true freedom for Ukraine. Thank you for your steadfastness and every meter of advance," Zelensky said.
Zelensky also met with Oleksandr Tarnavskyi, the commander of the Tavria operational group, as well the 3rd and 15th operational brigades, the 46th Separate Airmobile Brigade, and the 47th, 65th, 116th, 117th, and the 118th separate mechanized brigades, as well as frontline surgical unit, according to the report.
The visit on the southern front line followed the trip to units deployed in eastern Donetsk Oblast the day before.
Zelensky said that he listened to the reports on the operational situation in both areas the brigades operate.
Meanwhile, Russian attacks along the eastern front line have decreased as Russia seeks to regroup and reinforce its forces suffered combat losses, Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar told national television on Aug. 15.
She also said that it doesn’t indicate Russia gave up on its plans, she added.
The decrease is also related to the Ukrainian attacks on when the Russian troops “became more active in the Kupiansk and Lyman axis," said Maliar.
On Aug. 10, local authorities launched a mandatory civilian evacuation from the Kupiansk district in Kharkiv Oblast, where Russian forces are reportedly trying to recapture the territories lost during the Ukrainian counteroffensive last September.
The General Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces reported on Aug. 15 more gains in the area of Urozhaine in the Bakhmut area, Donetsk Oblast, as the Ukrainian counteroffensive is underway.
Ukraine's military added that it keeps holding back Russian offensive operations in the Lyman, Bakhmut, and Kupiansk directions.
The Bakhmut area is one of the three directions where Ukrainian forces conduct its summer counteroffensive, launched in early June.
Over the past week, Ukrainian forces have liberated three square kilometers near Bakhmut, Deputy Defense Minister Hanna Maliar reported on Aug. 14.