Ukraine rations its electricity after Russian strikes

Ukraine rations its electricity after Russian strikes
Ukraine rations its electricity after Russian strikes

Smoke billows near electricity towers after a Russian missile strike in Kyiv on March 9, 2023. (Photo by Sergei SUPINSKY / AFP)


Ukraine announced electricity restrictions at the end of the day on Wednesday after a new “massive” Russian drone and missile attack against its energy network, which left at least one dead and around ten injured.

Since the start of the year, Ukrainian electrical installations have suffered several waves of Russian bombing, causing serious damage and power cuts.

“The enemy is not abandoning its plans to deprive Ukrainians of light. New massive attack on our energy industry,” Ukrainian Energy Minister German Galushchenko wrote on Telegram on Wednesday.

Electricity production and transmission sites were targeted in the regions of Poltava (east), Kirovograd (center), Zaporizhia (south), Lviv, Ivano-Frankivsk and Vinnytsia (west), he said.

The city of Kherson, in the south, was also “partially deprived of electricity” due to “enemy strikes”, according to the local governor.

Late in the afternoon, the national electricity company Ukrenergo indicated that it will have to limit its supply of energy to industries and businesses between 6:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m., due to the attack. “Restrictions will be applied equally in all regions,” the operator said.

Ukrenergo said this was the fifth “massive” attack on the energy network since March 22.

At midday, the Ukrainian Ministry of Energy claimed to have restored power to more than 50,000 users temporarily deprived of electricity.

For its part, the Russian army assured that it had carried out strikes against the Ukrainian energy network and military industry in response to attacks by kyiv against its own installations.

The Ukrainian Air Force claimed to have shot down 39 of 55 missiles launched by Russia, as well as 20 of 21 attack drones.

According to the DTEK company, the largest private investor in the energy sector in Ukraine, three thermal power plants were “seriously damaged”.

These nighttime attacks killed a 65-year-old woman in a village in the southern region of Kherson and injured three other people, according to the local prosecutor’s office.

One person was also injured in the Dnipropetrovsk region (south), two in Brovary, near Kiev, at least two others in the capital, and an 8-year-old child in the Kirovograd region (center), according to officials. local authorities.

In the middle of the day, a separate Russian strike also hit a sports field in Kharkiv (north-east), leaving seven injured, including four children, the local prosecutor’s office announced.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky denounced “Russian terror” after these attacks, and accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of being a “Nazi”.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Chmygal took part in a new government working group responsible for preparing businesses and households for possible power and heating cuts during the coming autumn and winter.

On the front, Moscow claimed Wednesday the capture of the town of Novokalynové, near Avdiïvka, conquered in mid-February, in the Donetsk region (east). In recent weeks, the Russian army has been advancing in this area, taking advantage of the Ukrainian troops’ lack of men and weapons.

Enlisted prisoners

To compensate for these deficiencies, Ukrainian MPs adopted a text on Wednesday allowing, in exchange for release, voluntary prisoners to be enlisted in the army to fight, if they have less than three years left to serve.

According to the MP, Olena Chouliak, this measure will not be applicable to detainees convicted of certain serious crimes – notably “intentional homicide of more than two people”, sexual violence, attacks on national security – or targeted by “serious” convictions for corruption.

Moscow has already recruited tens of thousands of prisoners from its penal colonies sent to fight on the front.




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