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Live updates: Russian official says Kursk airfield has been attacked; Ukraine comes under further missile strikes

Ukraine faced continuing missile attacks on Tuesday morning, a day after it faced an heavy barrage of missiles from Russia.

The city of Zaporizhzhia in the south is experiencing a particularly intense attack once again, with critical infrastructure facilities and residential buildings damaged, according to a regional official.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in his nightly address Monday that 70 Russian missiles had been fired at Ukraine during attacks yesterday and that most of them were shot down.

The wave of missile attacks came after blasts at two separate air bases in Russia. Three people were killed in one of the incidents and several people were injured in both. Russia blamed Kyiv for the attacks but Ukraine has not publicly commented on the incidents.

On Tuesday morning, the governor of Russia’s Kursk region, which borders Ukraine, said there was a “drone attack” near an airfield in the region. Kyiv has not yet commented on this latest possible attack.

Parts of southern Ukraine shelled ‘all night long’

Parts of southern Ukraine have come under sustained bombardment overnight, local officials reported Tuesday morning.

Russian forces launched a missile attack on the suburbs of the southern city of Zaporizhzhia overnight, according to the head of the Zaporizhzhia Regional Military Administration.

“One of the missiles hit the territory of Stepne [to the southeast of Zaporizhzhia]. As a result, critical infrastructure facilities and residential buildings were damaged. According to preliminary information, no one was injured,” Oleksandr Starukh posted on Telegram.

He said the priority for Russian forces is in “holding captured lines” in the Zaporizhzhia region, which is partially occupied by Russia.

Russian forces launched a missile attack on the suburbs of the southern city of Zaporizhzhia overnight, according to the head of the Zaporizhzhia Regional Military Administration.
Nurphoto | Nurphoto | Getty Images

The area around Nikopol, to the southwest of Zaporizhzhia and in the neighboring Dnipropetrovsk province, has also come under more shelling “all night long,” an official said.

“The shelling of [the] Nikopol district does not abate… The Russians were firing heavy artillery at Nikopol town, Chervonohryhorivka and Marhanets communities all night long. Almost 50 enemy shells slammed into peaceful towns and villages,” Valentyn Reznichenko, the head of the Dnipropetrovsk Regional Military Administration, said on Telegram. He said there were no casualties.

In Nikopol, more than 10 private houses, farm buildings, gas pipelines and power lines were damaged, he said. CNBC was unable to immediately verify the reports.

— Holly Ellyatt

Russian official says airfield in Kursk region has been attacked

The governor of Russia’s Kursk region said Tuesday that there was a drone attack near an airfield there.

Posting on Telegram, Governor Roman Starovoyt said “as a result of a drone attack, an oil storage tank caught fire in the area of ​​the Kursk airfield.” He said there were no casualties and the fire was localized.  “All intelligence agencies are on site,” he added.

CNBC was not able to immediately verify the information in Starovoyt’s post. Russian state news agencies reported the incident but did not add further details.

If verified, the incident comes a day after two separate explosions at Russian military air bases. Russia accused Ukraine of attacking its air bases using drones on Monday. Three people were killed in one of the incidents

Ukraine has not claimed responsibility for the attacks, which were unusual given that they took place deep within Russian territory. Kursk is on the border with Ukraine. Officials in Kyiv have not commented on the Kursk incident.

— Holly Ellyatt

India signals it will keep buying oil from Russia

India will prioritize its own energy needs and continue to buy oil from Russia, its foreign minister signaled Monday, as Western governments press Moscow with a price cap to squeeze its earnings from oil exports.

Minister of External Affairs Subrahmanyam Jaishankar made the comments after holding talks with his visiting German counterpart, Annalena Baerbock, in which they discussed bilateral relations and Russia’s war in Ukraine. Jaishankar said it isn’t right for European countries to prioritize their energy needs but “ask India to do something else.”

“Europe will make the choices it will make. It is their right,” he told reporters.

India has so far not committed to the $60-per-barrel price cap on Russian oil set by the Group of Seven major industrialized countries and European Union that is expected to come into effect Monday. The move is an attempt by Western governments to limit fossil fuel earnings that support Moscow’s budget, its military and its invasion of Ukraine, while also avoiding a possible sharp price spike if Russia’s oil is suddenly taken off the global market.

— The Associated Press

Russian terror is not only a threat to Ukraine, but to the entire region and beyond, Zelenskyy says

Volodymyr Zelenskyy asked European nations to stop buying Russian oil.
Ukrainian Presidential Press Service | via Reuters

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy emphasized the need for cooperation in combatting Russian aggression and terror in his nightly address, following another deadly wave of Russian missile attacks across Ukraine.

“When one terrorist destabilizes everyone’s lives, stopping terror is a joint task,” Zelenskyy said.

The strikes also caused power interruptions in neighboring Moldova once again, prompting Zelenskyy to acknowledge the spillover effects of the war.

“Russian terror again affects neighboring states,” he said. “And this once again proves that Russia’s ability to carry out such massive terrorist attacks is a threat not only to Ukraine, but also to our entire region. At least,” he added.

Ukrainian air defense shot down “most of” the 70 missiles launched by Russia, according to Zelenskyy. At least four people were killed and several others injured by the strikes, he reported. Energy infrastructure was also targeted, prompting more emergency blackouts in regions across the country still reeling from prior attacks.

— Rocio Fabbro

Air defense a top priority for U.S. security assistance to Ukraine, Defense Secretary says

U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin attends a media statement after a meeting of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group at the American military’s Ramstein Air Base, near Ramstein-Miesenbach, Germany, September 8, 2022.
Thilo Schmuelgen | Reuters

United States Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin underscored U.S. commitment to supporting Ukraine’s defense against Russian aggression in a phone call with Ukrainian Defense Minister, Oleksii Reznikov.

“Secretary Austin reiterated air defense as a top priority for U.S. security assistance efforts, made evident by recent commitments to provide Ukraine additional munitions for U.S.-provided National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile Systems (NASAMS) as well as capabilities to counter Unmanned Aerial System,” Pentagon Press Secretary Pat Ryder said in a readout of the call.

Ukraine first received NASAMS in early November. The interceptor systems have proved invaluable to Ukraine’s defense and security efforts, giving Ukraine the capability to shoot down Russian missiles before they strike.

Austin also pledged his “unwavering support” to Ukraine in its war against Russia, condemning “Russia’s brutal air attacks on Ukraine’s civilian infrastructure,” according to Ryder.

— Rocio Fabbro

Moscow says three killed in Ukrainian drone attacks on air bases deep inside Russia

A satellite image shows an overview of Engels Air Base, in Saratov, Russia, December 4, 2022. 
Maxar Technologies | Reuters

Russia said that three of its military personnel were killed in what it said were Ukrainian drone attacks on two Russian air bases hundreds of miles from the front lines in Ukraine.

Ukraine did not directly claim responsibility. If it did carry out the attacks, they were the deepest military strikes it has conducted inside the Russian heartland since Moscow invaded on Feb. 24.

One of the targets, the Engels air base near the city of Saratov, houses bomber planes that are part of Russia’s strategic nuclear forces.

“The Kyiv regime, in order to disable Russian long-range aircraft, made attempts to strike with Soviet-made unmanned jet aerial vehicles at the military airfields Dyagilevo, in the Ryazan region, and Engels, in the Saratov region,” the Russian defence ministry said.

It said the drones, flying at low altitude, were intercepted by air defences and shot down. The wreckage caused slight damage to two aircraft, it said, and four people were wounded.

The ministry called it a “terrorist act” aimed at disrupting its long-range aviation.

— Reuters

Russia launched a new wave of missile attacks, says Ukrainian air force spokesperson

A militant of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic inspects the remains of a missile that landed on a street in the separatist-controlled city of Donetsk, Ukraine February 26, 2022.
Alexander Ermochenko | Reuters

Russia launched another wave of missile attacks against Ukraine Monday, Ukrainian air force spokesperson Yurii Ihnat said in a press briefing that took place amid air raid alerts in Kyiv and across the country.

“This is not a drill,” Ihnat told reporters. “The missiles are already launched.”

The attacks used strategic aviation launched from three separate sites: the Volgodonsk region in western Russia, the Caspian Sea and from ships in the Black Sea, according to Ihnat. The most recent missile launches are a continuation of Russia’s attacks on critical Ukrainian infrastructure that began in early October, he said. To date, Russian strikes damaged approximately half of Ukraine’s energy systems, leaving many Ukrainians without electricity as temperatures drop.

Ilhnat warned that Monday’s launch could result in several waves of strikes, cautioning Ukrainians to take shelter. “Russians do this in order to disperse and confuse our air defense forces,” he said of the launch waves.

Several top Ukrainian officials have requested additional air defense capabilities, including fighter jets and advanced missile deterrent systems, over the past weeks as Russia ramps up its missile strikes on Ukrainian infrastructure.

— Rocio Fabbro

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