Russia’s deadly missile bombardment which struck Ukraine on Friday, leaving scores of civilians dead, has marked a change in the Kremlin’s use of long-range strikes, according to the latest MoD intelligence update on Ukraine. The MoD has argued that it is possible that the Russian military was aiming to intercept Ukrainian reserve units and military supplies recently received by Ukraine.
The Russian cruise missile salvo, launch the first since March 2023, is reported to have killed at least 23 people, including five children with one missile hitting an apartment block in the city of Uman.
The MoD update published on Saturday, April 29 warns that such collateral damage can be expected as Russia’s targeting process, which prioritises perceived military necessity over preventing civilian deaths.
In the update, the MoD stated: “In the early hours of 28 April 2023, Russia launched the first major wave of cruise missile strikes against Ukraine since early March 2023.
“Although Ukraine shot down most of the missiles, at least 25 civilians were killed.
“The attacks suggest a departure in Russia’s use of long-range strikes.”
The briefing continued: “The wave involved fewer missiles than those over the winter and was unlikely to have been targeting Ukraine’s energy infrastructure.
“There is a realistic possibility that Russia was attempting to intercept Ukrainian reserve units and military supplies recently provided to Ukraine.
“Russia operates an inefficient targeting process and prioritises perceived military necessity over preventing collateral damage, including civilian deaths.”
It comes as huge flames were spotted in the city of Sevastopol in Russian-held Crimea after a suspected drone strike caused a fuel tank to catch fire in the port city.
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The Kremlin-appointed governor of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhaev, believes that a Ukrainian attack caused the fuel depot to go up in flames.
Governor Razvozhaev confirmed that no injuries were reported during the fire, which is currently being managed by local firefighters and emergency services.
He added that due to the significant volume of fuel involved, it may take some time to fully contain the blaze.
Razvozhaev said: “The situation is under the control of our firefighters and all operative services. Since the volume of fuel is large, it will take time to localise the fire.”
Sevastopol, Russia’s principal naval station on the Black Sea, has been the subject of multiple attempted attacks, including the most recent.
While Ukrainian officials have not directly claimed responsibility for these attacks, they have stated that they have the right to strike any target in response to Russian aggression.
Ukrainian army chief Valerii Zaluzhnyi announced on Friday that 23 missiles were fired towards Ukraine during the night, 21 of which were shot down, as well as two drones.
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