Russia fires missiles at Kyiv: 30 cruise missiles fired, 29 shot down, 1 person killed
Kyiv was attacked by Russia with 30 cruise missiles early on Thursday. Ukrainian air defenses shot down 29 of these missiles, while one missile passed through and hit an industrial building in Odesa, southern Ukraine, killing one person and injuring two others. Russia’s recent air assaults have escalated the conflict and Russia is reported to have “potentially formidable” defensive lines on Ukrainian territory consisting of extensive minefields, and over 200,000 troops along the 1,000-kilometer-long front line. Amidst this intensified conflict, China has put forward a peace proposal, and the Group of Seven leading industrialized nations gathered in Japan on Thursday to denounce Russia’s war.
China’s Peace Proposal
The day before the missile attack, China’s special envoy met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Ukrainian foreign officials to discuss China’s peace proposal. Unfortunately, there was no breakthrough following these talks. Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, Wang Wenbin, commented that “the warring parties needed to ‘accumulate mutual trust’ for progress to be made.” Ukrainian officials sought Beijing’s support for Kyiv’s peace plan, which included restoring Ukraine’s territorial integrity, withdrawing Russian forces from occupied territory, and the legal accountability of Russian President Vladimir Putin for the 2022 invasion. Beijing has yet to comment on this proposal.
The G7 Takes a Stand
Leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) leading industrialized nations gathered in Japan on Thursday, addressing the conflict in Ukraine and pledging to uphold Ukraine’s sovereignty. The G7’s statement read: “We denounce the ongoing aggressive actions by Russia against Ukraine, which breach international law, threatens regional stability, and weaken the rules-based international order.” The G7 nations pledged to continue assisting Ukraine militarily and economically and condemned Russia for its violation of Ukraine’s territorial sovereignty.
Russian Defenses and Its Advanced Weapons Systems
According to a Western official, Russia has built “potentially formidable” defensive lines on Ukrainian territory consisting of extensive minefields. It has over 200,000 troops along the 1,000-kilometer-long front line, along with tanks and howitzers as well as rapid-response missile systems. Despite the advanced weapons systems possessed by Moscow, Ukraine has also acquired sophisticated weapons systems from Western allies. This includes the ability to shoot down Russia’s hypersonic ballistic missiles – the most advanced weapons in Moscow’s arsenal.
The Derailed Train Incident
A train derailment has caused suspicions about possible Ukrainian saboteur activity behind Russian lines. The Russian state media reported that the train was carrying grain when eight train cars derailed. Kremlin-installed authorities in occupied Crimea reported this incident en masse. The New York Times reported that, “Russian train lines ‘are also used to transport weapons, ammunition, armored vehicles.” The incident occurred near the city of Simferopol, and the derailment was caused by, according to the Crimean Railway company, “the interference of unauthorized persons,” though no casualties were reported.
Monday’s Missile Attack
In a surprise daylight attack, Russia hit Kyiv with an array of missile fire on Monday. The Commander-in-Chief of Ukraine’s Armed Forces, Valerii Zaluzhnyi, confirmed that 37 cruise missiles, dozens of Shahed drones and a reconnaissance UAV were fired by Russia. Ukrainian military forces shot down almost all of these missiles, with Kyiv’s forces downing a total of 11 Iskander missiles. The daytime missile strike was on top of the overnight barrage that Kyiv experienced. Though Kyiv forces defeated this surprise attack launched by Russia, it was an escalation in the conflict.
Previous Russian Attacks
- On Sunday, Russia made history with its largest assault on the Ukrainian capital, with a huge wave of Russian drones targeting Kyiv.
- Overnight attacks on Kyiv have been on the rise, with Monday’s missile attack following the ninth nighttime attack targeted on Kyiv recently.
- In May alone, Russia has carried out four mass launches, two in between 16 and 18 May and one each in April and March, compared to two in February.
The missile attack on Kyiv this past Thursday was another escalation in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, coupled with the increasing pattern of nighttime attacks in recent weeks. Despite the advanced weapons systems that both parties possess, those on the ground suffer from this escalated violence, continuously experienced in war-torn regions. The G7 formally adopted rules to monitor the impact of products on deforestation whilst Russia made history with its largest assault on the Ukrainian capital, with a huge wave of Russian drones targeting Kyiv.
What countries comprise the G7 nations?
The Group of Seven (G7) leading industrialized nations comprise the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the United Kingdom.
What was the aim of China’s peace proposal?
China’s peace proposal aimed to restore Ukraine’s territorial integrity, withdraw Russian forces from Ukrainian territory, and hold Russian President Vladimir Putin legally accountable for the 2022 invasion.
Which front line is home to over 200,000 Russian troops?
The 1,000-kilometer-long front line located in Ukrainian territory is home to over 200,000 Russian troops.
How long has the conflict between Ukraine and Russia been ongoing?
The conflict between Ukraine and Russia began in 2014 following the annexation of Crimea by Moscow.
Why has there been an uptick in nighttime attacks on Kyiv?
It is unclear why there has been an uptick in nighttime attacks on Kyiv. Nonetheless, these attacks have increased in recent weeks, with Monday’s missile attack following the ninth nighttime attack on Kyiv recently.