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Ukraine updates: Kyiv repels fresh wave of Russian strikes

Published May 29, 2023last updated May 29, 2023

Ukrainian authorities said 37 missiles and 29 drones have been shot over Kyiv. Meanwhile, Denmark pledged billions more in military aid. Follow DW for more.

Kyiv residents look at damaged building
Ukrainian forces have managed to repell most of a series of Russian drone and missile strikes on KyivImage: Vasilisa Stepanenko/AP/picture alliance

Kyiv has largely fended off a wave of Russian air strikes, officials said on Monday, but later strikes killed several civilians.

Valery Zaluzhny, commander-in-chief of the Ukrainian armed forces, said that Ukraine had managed to shoot down 37 missiles and 29 drones. He said that Russia had launched up to 40 missiles and around 35 drones.

On Saturday night, the city was faced with the largest wave of air strikes since the start of the invasion.

"Only 18 hours have passed since the most massive UAV attack on Kyiv, and the enemy has attacked the capital again," Kyiv's military administration said, adding that this was the fifteenth air raid since the start of the month.

Latter on Monday, two people were killed and eight others were wounded in a Russian attack on the city of Toretsk in the Donetsk region.

"Every day, the Russians purposefully hit civilians in the Donetsk region," the region's governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said.

One woman was killed by shelling in the Dnipropetrovsk region, and one man was killed in an attack in the Kherson region, local authorities said.

Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko said that no casualties were reported in the capital and there was no damage to infrastructure.

Russian drones strike Kyiv; Ukraine mounts counter-offensive

Here are some of the other developments concerning Russia's war in Ukraine on Monday, May 29:

Belgorod governor reports fresh shelling

The governor of Russia's Belgorod region, which neighbors Ukraine, has alleged that Ukrainian forces shelled several settlements close to the border on Monday.

Two industrial facilities in the border town of Shebekino had been shelled and four employees had been wounded, Vyacheslav Gladkov said in a statement posted to Telegram. Several settlements were left without electricity, he added.

Last week, troops crossed into the region and briefly occupied several villages. Two civilians died and dozens of troops were killed, according to Russia.

Moscow blamed the incident on a Ukrainian "sabotage" group but Kyiv denied any involvement. Two Russian anti-Kremlin guerrilla groups, the Freedom of Russia Legion and Russian Volunteer Corps, claimed responsibility.

Denmark pledges billions in aid for Ukraine

Denmark's government announced it would increase military aid to Ukraine by $2.6 billion (€2.4 billion), bringing the country's aid fund to a total of $3.6 billion.

"It is now that the Ukrainians need our weapons and our support, so it is urgent," Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen told Danish public broadcaster DR.

The funds will be delivered this year as well as in 2024, she said, because "there is no indication that next year will be a year of peace."

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked Denmark for the pledge.

"This major contribution will further strengthen the combat capabilities of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the short and medium term," he said.

Daytime raids on Kyiv: DW's Max Zander in Ukraine

Kyiv proposes demilitarized zone in Russia

Any potential peace deal with Russia should include a demilitarized zone, Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak said.

Podolyak said the proposed demilitarized zone would be inside Russia and stretch for around 100-120 kilometers (62-75 miles) along the border with Ukraine.

It would cover the Belgorod, Bryansk, Kursk, and Rostov regions of Russia.

"The key theme of the post-war settlement should be the establishment of safeguards to avoid the recurrence of aggression in the future," he wrote on Twitter.

Lukashenko urges countries to join Belarus-Russia union

Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko has said that if another country in the region join Minsk and Moscow's economic and foreign policy alliance, there would be "nuclear weapons for everyone."

Kyiv and its allies have condemned Russia's decision to station tactical nuclear weapons in Belarus. This is the first time Russia has deployed such weapons outside of its own territory.

Belarus is a major Russian military ally and has served as a staging ground for Moscow's invasion of Ukraine. Belarus and Russia form part of the "Union State," which serves as a framework for economic and foreign policy alignment under Moscow's leadership.

"No one is against Kazakhstan and other countries having the same close relations that we have with the Russian Federation," Lukashenko said in an interview for Russian state television. "If someone is worried ... (then) it is very simple: join in the Union State of Belarus and Russia. That's all: there will be nuclear weapons for everyone."

Lukashenko said that this was his own view, and not one that had been expressed by the Kremlin.

Russian drone attack damages Odesa port

A Russian drone attack has damaged infrastructure in the southwestern Ukrainian city of Odesa, according to Ukraine's armed forces.

"A fire broke out in the port infrastructure of Odesa as a result of the hit. It was quickly extinguished. Information on the extent of the damage is being updated," the military's southern command said.

The statement did not specify whether the damage at the port threatened Ukrainian grain exports.

Foreign investors withdrew $36 billion from Russia — central bank

Investors who left Russia over the past year withdrew about $36 billion (€33.5 billion) from the country, according to Russian central bank figures cited by the state RIA news agency.

Foreign investors left Russia between March 2022 and March 2023 after the start of Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Russia puts US lawmaker on wanted list

Russia's interior ministry has put US Republican Senator Lindsey Graham on a wanted list, according to Russian media.

The move is in response to a video released by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's office, which showed Graham meeting with the Ukrainian leader and saying "the Russians are dying" and that US support for Kyiv was the "best money we've ever sent."

Ukraine released a longer copy of the video which showed the two remarks were not directly linked.

Moscow conducts security exercise around Crimea Bridge — British intelligence

Russia has conducted a security exercise around the Kerch Bridge, according to British intelligence.

The bridge links the Crimean Peninsula to the southwestern Russian region of Krasnodar.

The UK's Defense Ministry said in its intelligence report that the exercize included a smoke screen that partially masked the structure.

The report argued that Russia's use of smoke screen has been "ineffectual" in the invasion of Ukraine due to a "lack of a strong central planning function" and "poor low-level battle discipline."

zc, sdi/kb (Reuters, AFP, AP, dpa)