Residents of Kyiv and other cities across Ukraine scrambled for cover on December 5 as Russia launched another deadly barrage of missiles at the country after explosions were reported at two airfields in central Russia.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said four people were killed in the attacks, but said Ukrainian air defense forces had been able to shoot down most of the missiles launched.
"Every Russian missile shot down is concrete proof that terror can be defeated," he said in his evening video address.
Ukrainian Air Force spokesman Yuriy Ihnat told RFE/RL earlier that Ukrainian air defenses were able to shoot down over 60 of the more than 70 missiles launched.
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He said 38 cruise missiles were fired from Tu-95 bombers based in the Caspian Sea region and the southern Russian region of Rostov, which borders on Ukraine to the east. Another 22 Kalibr missiles were fired from ships in Russia's Black Sea Fleet.
"We also have information on the use of Tu-22 M3 bombers with rocket launchers, which are the most powerful in terms of combat weight," Ihnat said. "Guided air missiles were also launched from Su-25 fighters."
Air-raid sirens lasted for three hours as officials warned people to take shelter.
Andriy Yermak, head of the Ukrainian presidential office, told Ukrainians to heed the alarm. Reports on social media showed hundreds of people sheltering in subway stations in the capital, Kyiv.
The missile strikes injured one person in Odesa and hit energy infrastructure in the city, where all substations and backup lines were not working and where there is no water supply.
In Kryviy Rih in the Dnipropetrovsk region, critical infrastructure has been damaged and large-scale blackouts are possible, authorities said. Electricity was turned off as a precaution in the northern Sumy region, and possible disruptions were reported in the northern Chernihiv region and the western Ternopil region.
Zelenskiy said engineers had already started to restore electricity, and Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said that, despite being hit by Russian missiles, Ukraine's energy system "functions and will remain intact."
John Kirby, spokesman for the White House National Security Council, condemned the latest Russian strikes, calling them a reminder of Russian President Vladimir Putin's brutality. The United States is in constant contact with Ukraine and will continue to provide Kyiv with everything it needs for its defense, Kirby said.
Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said on Twitter that he had a conversation with U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on December 5 after the Russian missile strike. Reznikov said he and Austin discussed further steps to strengthen Ukrainian air defense and thanked the U.S. for its continued support.
Earlier on December 5, at least one large explosion occurred at a Russian military air base in the Saratov region, about 600 kilometers east of Ukraine, while another blast was reported by Russian state media at an airfield outside Ryazan, southeast of Moscow.
Social-media posts by residents in the cities of Engels and Saratov seemed to show a large explosion at the Engels-2 air base at about 6 a.m. local time on December 5.
The Russian Defense Ministry said the attacks were carried out by Ukrainian drones. The ministry confirmed news reports of damage to two Tu-95 strategic bombers and the deaths of Russian servicemen. The ministry also claimed that both drones were shot down.
Ukrainian authorities have not publicly commented on the blasts, but a senior Ukrainian official quoted anonymously by The New York Times, said the drones were launched from Ukrainian territory and at least two planes were destroyed at one of the Russian bases and several more were damaged.
The latest volley of Russian strikes against Ukraine came the same day that a price cap of $60 per barrel imposed on seaborne Russian oil by the Group of Seven (G7) leading economies, the European Union, and several importing countries took effect.
The price cap, which has been joined by the United States, Australia, Japan, and the United Kingdom, was intended to punish Moscow for its unprovoked aggression against neighboring Ukraine.
It stipulates that Russian oil can only be shipped to third countries using G7 or EU tankers, insurance companies, or credit institutions if the cargo is purchased at or below the price cap.
The EU has also introduced an embargo of seaborne Russian oil that also took effect on December 5.
Moscow remained defiant over the move and said it would not recognize the restrictions.
The United States doesn't expect that Russia's threats to have any long-term impact on global oil prices, Kirby said.
The cap will lock in the discount on Russian oil, and countries like China and India will be able to bargain for steep price reductions, he said.
With reporting by Reuters, AP, and The New York Times