Ukraine carries out 'massive' missile strike against Russian base in Crimea

September 21, 2023

KYIV — Sources in Ukraine's Security Services (SBU) say that a massive strike was launched on Wednesday night against the Saki military airfield in Crimea.

Saki — which suffered an extensive attack in August 2022 — is home to Russian combat aircraft.

The sources told CNN that "the SBU and the Ukrainian Navy launched a massive fire strike on the Saki military airfield."

"There were at least 12 combat aircraft (Su-24 and Su-30) and Pantsir MPADS [air defense systems] at the airfield."

"There was also a training base for operators of [Iranian-made] Mojaher UAVs. These are the drones used by the Russians to coordinate their own air attacks and as a combat attack drone."

"The strikes of the Security Service and the Navy hit the target and caused serious damage to the occupiers' equipment. To defeat the enemy, drones were used to overload Russian air defense, and then Neptune missiles were launched," the sources told CNN.

Neptune missiles are Ukrainian-made and were used to sink the Russian warship Moskva last year.

Since 2014, the Saki Air Base has been home to a Russian naval aviation regiment, part of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet, according to the state-run RIA-Novosti news service.

Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, after Russian President Vladimir Putin sent military forces into what was then an autonomous region of southern Ukraine with strong Russian loyalties.

Thousands of Russian-speaking troops wearing unmarked uniforms poured into the peninsula in early March that year. Two weeks later, Russia completed its annexation of Crimea in a referendum slammed by Ukraine and most of the world as illegitimate.

Meanwhile, Ukraine's army chief said Ukrainian air defenses shot down 36 of 43 missiles launched by Russia on Thursday in attacks across the country.

Valerii Zaluzhnyi, commander-in-chief of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, said in a Telegram post that cruise missiles launched from aircraft in southern Russia were “constantly changing course along the route.”

In an update Thursday, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine said Russian forces launched "a massive missile attack" on civilian infrastructure in multiple regions.

Ukrainian officials said at least seven people were wounded in aerial assaults on Kyiv, while two people were injured in Kharkiv.

Air raid alerts remained in place in parts of Ukraine on Thursday after Russian forces launched deadly strikes across the country.

Ukraine's air force said the missile threat is ongoing, while Internal Affairs Minister Ihor Klymenko urged Ukrainians “to follow the safety rules in the regions where the repeated alarm is announced” and to take shelter.

"It’s a restless morning," Klymenko said.

At least two people were killed and five others were wounded in the southern city of Kherson following Russian shelling overnight.

In a Telegram post, Oleksandr Prokudin, head of the Kherson region military administration, said two men ages 29 and 41 died in a Russian strike on a dormitory.

A 9-year-old girl is among seven people who were injured after Russia launched an aerial attack on the capital Kyiv, Mayor Vitalii Klitschko said. “Kyiv! A second strike is possible. Missile threat! Stay in the shelters!” the mayor later warned in a Telegram post.

Air raid sirens have now sounded for more than 1,000 hours in Kyiv since Russia's full-scale invasion began in February last year, an official said.

“The capital has already crossed the mark of 1,000 hours of air raid alarms since the beginning of the full-scale invasion! said Serhii Popko, head of the Kyiv city military administration, in a Telegram post Thursday. "Just imagine -- a month and a half of continuous air raid alarms! We have survived it and we will overcome much more together!"

At least two people were injured after six Russian strikes on the northeastern city, a Ukrainian official said. The attacks were focused on the Slobidskyi district and damaged civilian infrastructure, he added.

A Russian missile strike destroyed a hotel in the central city of Cherkasy, resulting in a fire, officials said. Seven people were injured. Structural damage to an industrial area in Lviv was reported after a fire broke out following Russian attacks, according to officials. No casualties were immediately reported. — CNN

September 21, 2023
4 hours ago

Release of Palestinian prisoners sheds light on controversial Israeli justice system in the occupied West Bank

5 hours ago

Thai workers return to overjoyed families in Bangkok

5 hours ago

Israeli police say three killed and 16 injured in Jerusalem shooting