Kyiv marks founding day with deadly drone attack from Russia

StarAvis Desk
StarAvis Desk
7 Min Read
Firefighters Tackle Aftermath of Largest Drone Attack Since Russian Invasion, Kyiv. © Valentyn Ogirenko/Reuters

Ukraine downs 52 Iranian-made drones; tragically claims one life and injures two

In an unprecedented act of aggression, Russia conducted its largest drone assault on Kyiv during the city’s annual celebration of its founding. Ukrainian military officials reported that nearly all of the Iranian-made drones were successfully shot down.

According to the air force, they managed to bring down 52 out of 54 Shahed drones launched in successive waves against the city. However, falling debris tragically claimed the life of one man, injured two others, and caused a shopping center’s roof to catch fire.

Rescuer Combats Blaze in Kyiv Building After Devastating Drone Attack on Ukrainian Capital.
Rescuer Combats Blaze in Kyiv Building After Devastating Drone Attack on Ukrainian Capital. — AFP

The attack originated from the north and south at low altitudes, indicating that the Russian forces sought to evade Ukraine’s improving air defenses. Ukrainian military spokesperson from Operational Command South stated that the unconventional routes taken by the drones aimed to bypass the southern air defenses, flying over temporarily occupied territories and dispersing across Ukraine.

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The spokesperson added that the Russian forces were attempting to hide the movement direction of the Shahed groups by gravitating towards riverbeds. Ukrainian forces continue to explore new tactics to enhance their effectiveness.

Military observers have suggested that the Russian air attacks serve the dual purpose of depleting Ukrainian air defense ammunition through the use of inexpensive Iranian drones. Ukrainian officials have expressed concerns about the shortage of anti-aircraft missiles as they plan a spring counteroffensive against Russian occupying forces.

The drone assaults occurred in the early hours of Kyiv Day, the annual celebration of the city’s founding 1,541 years ago. Despite the constant Russian air raids, resilient locals took to their balconies, shouting slogans in support of Ukrainian air defenses and defiance against Vladimir Putin and Russia.

Throughout the day, the city center bustled with crowds, engaging in street fairs, live concerts, and embracing the spirit of celebration. Residents proudly wore traditional embroidered blouses called vyshyvanka, symbolizing a summer festival infused with defiance.

The impact of the drones was felt close to home for some residents. Okseniya, a vendor selling handmade beaded necklaces, shared that pieces of a drone landed just 400 meters from her mother’s house, leaving her in fear. However, she emphasized the importance of carrying on with daily life, cherishing each moment in the face of constant danger.

The invasion has exposed divisions within the Russian leadership, as evident when the head of the Wagner mercenary group, Prigozhin, criticized the Kremlin hierarchy for suppressing his dissenting views on the conduct of the war. He warned that such censorship attempts would backfire, leading to public backlash in the long term.

As the conflict rages on, the people continue to endure and defy the adversities brought by the ongoing war, while cherishing the values and joys of life amid uncertainty.

News analysis

The news highlights a significant event that occurred in Kyiv on its founding day. Russia launched a deadly drone attack on the city, indicating an escalation of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. The timing of the attack, coinciding with Kyiv’s celebration of its founding, adds a layer of symbolism and raises concerns about Russia’s intentions.

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According to Ukrainian military officials, the attack involved a large number of drones, most of which were manufactured in Iran. The Ukrainian air force successfully intercepted and shot down a majority of the drones, demonstrating the effectiveness of their air defense systems. However, the attack still resulted in the loss of one life, injuries to two individuals, and damage to property.

The attack strategy employed by Russia appears to have aimed at evading Ukraine’s air defenses. The drones approached from unconventional routes, flying at low altitudes and attempting to bypass the southern air defenses. This suggests that the Russian forces are continuously adapting their tactics to overcome the improving Ukrainian defense capabilities.

It also touches upon the potential motives behind the attack. Military observers suggest that Russia may be aiming to deplete Ukraine’s ammunition by using inexpensive Iranian drones. This tactic could weaken Ukraine’s ability to defend itself during a planned spring counteroffensive against Russian occupying forces. The shortage of anti-aircraft missiles emerges as one of Ukraine’s pressing concerns, highlighting the importance of international support in addressing this issue.

It portrays the resilience and defiance of the people of Kyiv. Despite enduring frequent Russian air raids, residents took to their balconies, showing support for the Ukrainian air defenses and expressing defiance against Russia. The spirit of celebration prevailed as crowds filled the streets for the city’s founding day, with people proudly displaying traditional attire and engaging in festivities.

The news also briefly mentions internal divisions within the Russian leadership. The head of the Wagner mercenary group, Prigozhin, criticizes the Kremlin hierarchy for attempting to silence his criticisms of the war. This provides insight into the complexities and dynamics within the Russian side of the conflict.

Overall, it sheds light on a critical event that unfolded in Kyiv, underscoring the ongoing tensions between Russia and Ukraine. It emphasizes the resilience of the Ukrainian forces and the determination of the people to carry on with their lives despite the constant threat of attacks. The attack on a day of historical significance adds a symbolic dimension to the conflict and raises concerns about Russia’s intentions in the region.


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