63 Russian soldiers killed in missile strike

Dozens of Russian soldiers were killed when Ukrainian missiles hit a building in Ukraine’s occupied Donetsk region on New Year’s Day, according to Russian and Ukrainian authorities.

“The kyiv regime launched a strike, firing six projectiles from the American-made HIMARS multiple rocket launcher at a Russian unit near Makeyevka,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement.

The ministry said two rockets were shot down, but four hit the building and its surroundings. The ministry said 63 servicemen died in the attack, although details remain unclear. Dmitry Azarov, governor of Russia’s Samara region, said an unknown number of residents were among those killed and injured.

Ukrainian authorities did not claim responsibility but put the death toll at nearly 400, sarcastically blaming “careless handling of heaters, neglect of safety measures, smoking in an unspecified location” .

Igor Strelkov, a Russian military blogger and former defense minister in the breakaway region, said on Telegram that the building was almost completely destroyed after munitions stored in the same building exploded.

“Almost all the military equipment standing next to the building without any sign of camouflage was also destroyed,” he wrote. “Many people are missing under the rubble.”

Strelkov also noted that Russian officers “prefer to stay further away from the location of trusted troops – out of range of enemy missiles.”

Daniil Bezsonov, a Russian-appointed administration official in Donetsk, called for the punishment of officers who ordered the stationing of large numbers of troops at the facility.

kyiv RESIDENTS RING IN THE NEW YEAR AMID ATTACKS:Zelensky says Ukraine will not forgive: Updates

Other developments:

►Russian officials say they shot down a Ukrainian drone approaching the Russian city of Voronezh, nearly 400 miles from the Ukrainian border. No damage or injuries were reported, the regional government said in a statement.

►A Ukrainian drone struck an energy facility in Russia’s Bryansk region along the Ukrainian border, Bryansk Regional Governor Alexander Bogomaz said Monday. A village was left without electricity, he said.

EU chief pledges support for Ukraine through winter

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen spoke by phone Monday with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, pledging to start disbursing $18 billion in aid in monthly payments soon. She added that the EU will continue to support Ukraine through the winter with generators, light bulbs, shelters, school buses and other necessities.

“I conveyed my wholehearted support and best wishes for 2023 to the people of Ukraine,” she said in a post on social media. “The EU stands with you, as long as it takes. We support your heroic fight. A fight for freedom and against brutal aggression.”

Kyiv claims the destruction of 40 Russian drones

Russia deployed several explosive drones in another nighttime attack on Ukraine, officials said Monday, as the Kremlin signaled no letup in its strategy of using bombings to target the country’s energy infrastructure. country and exhaust Ukrainian resistance to its invasion.

The dam was the latest in a series of relentless year-end attacks, including one that killed three civilians on New Year’s Eve.

On Monday, Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said 40 drones “headed towards Kyiv” overnight. All were destroyed, according to the Air Defense Forces.

Contribute: The Associated Press

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