Kyiv was targeted overnight by one of the most powerful Russian drone and missile strike in months, which killed and wounded civilians, authorities in the capital said on August 30, as regional officials in Russia reported what they said was the largest Ukrainian drone attack since the start of the war.
The Russian attack on Kyiv in the early hours of August 30 killed at least two people and wounded three others, Serhiy Popko, the head of the Kyiv municipal military administration said, adding that it was the most powerful on the Ukrainian capital since spring.
Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said the two people that were killed were security guards at an enterprise in the city’s Shevchenkivskiy district.
The attack damaged several houses as well in the capital and also hit a cemetery, where it ignited a fire, authorities said.
In the Zhytomyr region, wreckage from fallen drones caused damage to railway infrastructure, regional Governor Vitaliy Bunechko said.
Ukrainian Commander in Chief Valeriy Zaluzhniy said that a total of 28 cruise missiles and 16 drones were launched by Russian forces in the latest attack on Ukraine. All cruise missiles and 15 Iranian-made drones were shot down by the Ukrainian air defense, Zaluzhniy wrote on Facebook.
Meanwhile, Russia claimed on August 30 that it had thwarted one of the largest Ukrainian drone attacks that targeted six regions.
In the western region of Pskov, some 660 kilometers from the Ukrainian border, drones struck an airfield that houses military and civilian aircraft, damaging four military transport planes, regional officials said. TASS said the four damaged planes were Il-76 transport aircraft.
The Pskov city airport has been closed for civilian flights until August 31 for damage assessment. Residents of the city reported explosions and gunfire overnight on August 31.
Regional Governor Mikhail Vedernikov posted on Telegram a short video in which a blast can be heard and firelight can be seen over the airfield. Explosions were also reported in the Russian regions of Bryansk, Kaluga, Orlov, Ryazan, and Moscow.
Ukrainian drones attempted an attack on a TV tower in the Bryansk region, regional Governor Aleksandr Bogomaz said, adding that there were no casualties.
Two Moscow airports — Domodedovo and Vnukovo — were briefly closed.
In Russia-annexed Crimea, a drone attack was carried out on Sevastopol, Moscow-installed regional Governor Mikhail Razvozhaev said on Telegram, without giving other details.
The Russian military also said that one of its planes destroyed four Ukrainian attack vessels carrying some 50 troops in an operation on the Black Sea. The claim could not be independently verified.
On the battlefield, Ukrainian forces continued their offensive operation on the axis of the strategic southern city of Melitopol, the General Staff of Ukraine’s military said on August 30. It said that a total of 35 combat clashes occurred along the front line over the past 24 hours.
On August 29, Ukrainian authorities ordered the mandatory evacuation of residents near the frontline city of Kupyansk in eastern Ukraine as Russian shelling continued to take a civilian toll in the region.
WATCH: Ukraine held a memorial ceremony on August 29 for Andriy Pilshchikov, one of the three pilots who died in a midair collision while on a training mission over the Zhytomyr region. Pilshchikov, who went by the call sign Juice, had become well-known after giving numerous interviews to international media in which he called for modern fighter jets to be provided to Ukraine.
Russian forces have been attempting to retake Kupyansk in the eastern Kharkiv region after capturing it early in the war but losing it in the face a Ukrainian counteroffensive that shocked Moscow with its speed and force nearly a year ago.
However, a new Ukrainian counteroffensive, begun in June in the east and south of the country, has made slower progress, resulting in heavy losses. Russian forces have also suffered heavy losses as they attempt an offensive in the east, leaving many experts to fear a long-term standoff between the two sides.
In Washington, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the United States was providing its next package “of military assistance to aid Ukraine as it defends its territory and protects its people.”
He said the package, worth $250 million, would include “AIM-9M missiles for air defense, munitions for High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, 155mm and 105mm artillery ammunition, mine-clearing equipment, [and] Javelin and other anti-armor systems and rockets.”
The United States as so far provided some $40 billion in military aid to Ukraine, officials have said.