Blackouts across Ukraine as Russia ramps up airstrikes on energy infrastructure

Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians are set to go without power this winter as Russian strikes continue to target the country’s energy infrastructure.

Officials in several regions have reported power outages as the Kremlin has intensified its attacks on power stations, water supply systems and other key energy suppliers across the country as the war enters its latest phase.

Russian forces rained more than 80 missiles on cities across Ukraine on October 10, in apparent retaliation for an explosion that damaged a key bridge linking Russia to the Crimean peninsula.

Ukraine’s air force said in a statement on Saturday that Russia had launched ‘a massive missile attack’ on the country’s ‘critical infrastructure,’ hours after air raid sirens blared across the nation.

It said that it had downed 18 out of 33 cruise missiles launched from air and sea.

Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko said on Telegram that ‘several rockets’ targeting the capital were shot down on Saturday morning, with similar reports soon following from officials in the west and south of the country.

Power outages were also reported in southwestern Odessa following ‘two missile strikes at the region’s energy infrastructure’, governor Maksym Marchenko said.

Around 40% of the country’s electric power system has since been severely damaged since the attack on the Kersh Bridge.

Earlier this week, President Zelenskyy revealed that 30% of Ukraine’s power stations have been destroyed by Russian strikes.

State energy supplier Ukrenergo has since announced that energy restrictions have had to be ‘forcibly applied’ in several regions, including the capital Kyiv and its surrounding area.

‘Ukrenergo specialists are taking all measures to restore electricity supply as soon as possible,’ they added.

Elsewhere in the country, the western city of Khmelnytskyi was left with no electricity, shortly after local media reported several loud explosions.

The mayor of Lutsk, a city of 215,000 in Ukraine’s far west, made similar claims on Telegram on Saturday morning.

Meanwhile, the central city of Uman, a key pilgrimage centre for Hasidic Jews which had a population of over 100,00 before the war, was also plunged into darkness after a rocket hit a nearby power station.

Earlier this week, Zelenskyy urged citizens to limit their power usage between 7-11am and advised civilians to avoid using energy-guzzling appliances such as electric heaters.

He also claimed that five explosive-laden ‘suicide’ drones had been downed in the central Cherkasy region southeast of Kyiv.

Elsewhere in Ukraine, Russia is reportedly planning a false flag attack on a dam to create an ‘atomic bomb’ of water to flood the people living nearby Kherson.

The occupied city is gearing up to be the site of the next major battle in the conflict, and Russian authorities have been evacuating their civilians out of the region at a rate of 10,000 a day in advance of an expected Ukrainian assault.

The dam, located 35 miles from Kherson, supplies electricity to hundreds of thousands of people.

Russia is allegedly trying to make it look as if Ukraine is responsible for the strike in the hopes of portraying the country as ‘a terrorist state that deliberately targets civilians’.

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