The Hindu (Mumbai)

Russia strikes Kyiv’s energy infra with drones, missiles

KYIV Moscow to begin spring draft of conscripts


Moscow launched a largescale attack on Ukraine’s energy infrastruc­ture on Friday, with a mass barrage of 99 drones and missiles hitting regions across the country, Ukraine’s armed forces said.

Air raid warnings rang out across the country, with 10 Ukrainian regions coming under fire, the country’s Interior Minister, Ihor Klymenko, said.

Ukraine’s state-owned grid operator, Ukrenergo, said that Friday’s attack deliberate­ly targeted thermal and hydroelect­ric power plants across central and western regions. DTEK, Ukraine’s largest private electricit­y operator, also said that three of its thermal power plants had been damaged in the attack. It

Ukrainian troops from anti-drone mobile air defence unit at their position in Chernihiv on Thursday.

announced emergency power shutdowns in the city of Odesa.

Escalating strikes

Russia has escalated its attacks on Ukraine in recent days, launching several missile barrages on the capital, Kyiv, and hitting energy infrastruc­ture across the country. Largescale blackouts have already

affected Ukraine’s Kharkiv, where 7,00,000 people lost power in an attack on March 22.

Five people, including a 5-year-old girl, were wounded during the attack in Ukraine’s Dnipropetr­ovsk region. He later said that another man had been killed and one more injured in a separate drone attack on Friday.

Russia will begin calling up tens of thousands of soldiers next week in a conscripti­on drive to replenish its armed forces and build up its military reserves.

Moscow says conscripts are not sent to fight in Ukraine but the draft — which happens twice a year — comes amid persistent rumours of a new wave of mobilisati­on for the Ukraine offensive.

“The spring draft will be held from April 1,” a senior Russian official said.

Some 1,47,000 conscripts were drafted during last year’s spring call-ups. Russian men aged between 18 and 30 are eligible to be called up after lawmakers increased the upper age limit from 27 last year.

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