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Powerless in the Dark: The Human Cost of Russia's Latest Strikes on Ukraine

Powerless in the Dark: The Human Cost of Russia's Latest Strikes on Ukraine
Source: Getty Images

Moscow, (TMT) - In a devastating escalation of hostilities, Russian forces have unleashed a barrage of strikes across Ukraine, leaving at least five dead and over a million civilians without power. The attacks, which targeted critical energy infrastructure, plunged vast regions into darkness, including the second-largest city, Kharkiv, and affected more than 53,000 households in Odesa.

The onslaught began with a series of fifteen explosions in Kharkiv, as reported by regional head Oleg Synehubov. The strikes were not limited to military targets; civilian infrastructure suffered significant damage, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis in the war-torn nation.

Ukraine's energy minister, German Galushchenko, condemned the attacks as an attempt to provoke "a large-scale failure of the country's energy system". In a defiant response, President Volodymyr Zelensky urged Western allies to expedite military aid to Ukraine, emphasizing the need for additional air defense systems to counter the relentless Russian missile and drone attacks.

The strategic targeting included Ukraine's largest dam, the DniproHES in Zaporizhzhia, which was hit multiple times. Despite the severity of the strikes, authorities have assured that there is no immediate threat of a breach. However, the damage extended to a trolleybus crossing the dam, which caught fire after a missile strike, tragically killing the driver.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reported that the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant lost connection to the main power line for several hours following the Russian attacks, highlighting the "ever-present dangers to nuclear safety and security during the conflict". The plant managed to continue operating on its only remaining back-up power line, averting a potential nuclear disaster.

The Russian Ministry of Defense justified the assault as a series of revenge attacks against Kyiv for its earlier incursions into Russian territory. This claim comes after local officials in the Russian region of Belgorod, near the border with Ukraine, reported casualties and injuries due to a Ukrainian strike.