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The United States condemns Russia’s massive attacks on all of Ukraine

People take shelter from bombing inside subway stations during a Russian missile attack on Kiev. (5 December 2022)
People take shelter from bombing inside subway stations during a Russian missile attack on Kiev. (5 December 2022)

The White House on Monday (December 5) condemned the latest wave of Russian attacks on Ukraine, saying they showed the brutality of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov condemned the brutal airstrikes targeting Ukraine’s civilian infrastructure. In a statement from the U.S. Department of Defense, Austin also expressed the U.S.’s unwavering “commitment to support Ukraine’s ability to resist Russia’s aggressive war.”

Austin again emphasized that air defense is a top priority for U.S. security assistance efforts, as evidenced by the U.S. commitment to provide Ukraine with more U.S.-supplied ammunition for the U.S.-supplied National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System (NASAMS) and capabilities to counter unmanned aerial systems.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a nightly video address that four people were killed in Russia’s massive attack on Monday.

“Peace can only be ensured by dismantling Russia’s terrorist capabilities, recovering all our land, and bringing the perpetrators to justice,” he said. “

On Monday morning, Ukrainian officials reported that Russia had launched massive missile strikes across Ukraine. Air raid sirens sounded, urging civilians to seek shelter immediately.

The new round of massive missile attacks on homes, buildings, and power infrastructure underscores Russia’s strategy to deprive Ukraine of energy, heating, and water supply in the middle of winter.

Ukraine’s state grid operator Ukrenergo confirmed that Russia attacked energy infrastructure, causing emergency blackouts in Ukraine.

However, Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said Ukraine’s national electricity system remained functional.

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Ukrainian media reported explosions in several areas south of Kiev, including the Black Sea ports of Cherkasy, Krivelikh, and Odessa. The water company said a power outage at a pumping station in Odessa city disrupted the city’s water supply.

Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy director of the Office of the President of Ukraine, wrote on the social media platform Telegram: “The enemy is again attacking Ukrainian territory with missiles!”

Tymoshenko said two people were killed and three others injured in the village of Nova Soevka, in the southern Zaporizhzhia region, including a 22-month-old child.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken accused Russia of “trying to weaponize winter” by launching air strikes in recent weeks against Ukrainian electricity and water supplies in order to hit the morale of the Ukrainian people.

Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday, he said: “It’s really barbaric to do that.” Ukrainian

Air Force spokesman Yuriy Ishnat said land-based missiles were launched from southern Russia and shipborne missiles from the Caspian and Black Seas. Russian strategic bombers also fired missiles, he said.

Meanwhile, Moscow said Monday that Ukrainian drones had struck two air bases on Russian territory hundreds of miles from the front line.

One of the attacks reportedly took place at a base with nuclear-capable strategic bombers deployed to launch attacks on Ukraine.

In a video address on Monday, Zelensky said Ukraine’s air defense systems shot down most of the Russian missiles fired at Ukraine and that the staff of the energy company had begun to restore power supplies.

“I want to thank our air defense forces, our energy company workers, and our people,” he said. Air defense systems shot down most of the missiles. Energy workers have begun to restore the power supply. Our people will never give up. “

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The command of the Ukrainian Air Force said that the Ukrainian army shot down more than 60 of the more than 70 missiles launched by Russia. The BBC reported that Moscow said it hit all 17 targets.

Meanwhile, Russian state television reported on Monday that Russian President Vladimir Putin drove a Mercedes car across the Crimean Bridge, which connects southern Russia with the annexed Crimean peninsula. Less than two months ago, the infrastructure project that Putin was proud of was bombed.

Putin, accompanied by Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin, inspected the bridge and the site of the October explosion.

Russia‘s latest round of bombing comes after the G7 and Australia decided on Friday to limit Russian seaborne oil to $60 a barrel. Russia says the price cap will not weaken its economy.

Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak, Russia’s energy chief, said on Sunday that Moscow would not sell oil that accepted the West’s price cap, even if Russia had to cut production.

Novak called the price cap a serious intervention in world energy trade, an action that could lead to supply shortages.

The White House said Monday it was not surprised by Russia’s reaction.

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said the price cap could be adjusted over time to prevent Russia from profiting from the war in Ukraine while keeping Russian crude on the market.

“The price cap level of $60 a barrel maintains a clear intention to keep Russia productive,” she said.

White House NSC spokesman John Kirby also told reporters that the oil price cap will not have any long-term impact on international oil prices.

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Sanctions make it difficult for the Russian military to replenish weapons, Secretary of State Blinken said on Sunday that the cost of Western sanctions to Russia is increasing every day, making it more difficult for Moscow to replenish weapons to advance the war of aggression against Ukraine.

Blinken also said that due to trade controls imposed by the United States and its allies, Russia cannot import the parts needed to make more weapons to replenish the weapons worn out on the battlefield in Ukraine. Some Russian weapons were destroyed by the Ukrainian army, and some were abandoned when the Russian army retreated.

He said on CNN‘s “State of the Nation” that “costs are piling up every day. Russia’s burden is getting heavier every day.

(This article draws on reports from The Associated Press, Reuters, and AFP.)

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