A drone attack has been reported at an airfield in Kursk region – the latest military target attacked within Russia; Vladimir Putin has driven across a crucial bridge in Crimea damaged earlier this year; listen to the latest episode of Ukraine War Diaries as you scroll.
We’ve been focusing this morning on a series of attacks on military targets within Russia, which managed to reach deep into the country’s territory.
British military intelligence has now said that if Russia assesses the attacks were deliberate, “it will probably consider them as some of the most strategically significant failures of force protection since its invasion of Ukraine”.
Russia’s leadership will likely “impose severe sanctions on Russian officers deemed responsible for allowing the incident”, the British Ministry of Defence said.
Multiple open sources reported explosions at Engels Airbase in the Saratov region and Dyagilyaevo airfield near Ryazan, southeast of Moscow.
Three people were killed when a fuel tank exploded at Dyagilyaevo, while two Tu-95 BEAR heavy bombers were reportedly damaged at Engels.
The MoD said the causes of the explosions have not been confirmed.
It said the sites are “much deeper inside Russia” than previous explosions.
The Engels airbase is home to more than 30 heavy bombers, which contribute to Russia’s nuclear deterrent and have been frequently used to launch conventional cruise missiles at Ukraine, the MoD said.
Bombers will likely be temporarily moved to dispersal airfields in response, it added.
About half the region surrounding Ukraine’s capital will be without electricity in the coming days, Kyiv’s regional governor has said.
His warning came after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said there would have to be “emergency blackouts” in many regions.
“We will be doing everything to restore stability,” he said in a late-night video address.
Russia has been repeatedly attacking Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, claiming it is a bid to degrade its opponent’s military.
Ukraine says the attacks are aimed at civilians and are leaving millions susceptible to freezing temperatures.
DTEK, Ukraine’s largest private energy provider, had to disconnect a facility from the power grid due to damage from yesterday’s attacks.
It said the facility had been a target 17 times in the past two months.
“A day or two is necessary to restore normal generation in the system,” Volodymyr Kudritsky, head of national power grid operator Ukrenergo, told Ukrainian television.
Meanwhile, all water pumping stations and reserve lines in the Odesa region lost power and water supply was cut.
In Kramatorsk, a city in the Donetsk region under Ukraine’s control, 370 apartment buildings were without heat because of power outages, the city’s mayor said.
Russia has reported a drone strike near an airbase in its Kursk region today – a day after attacks caused explosions at airbases deep in its territory.
Although Ukraine has not claimed responsibility for the attacks, it is thought the strikes likely came from Ukrainian forces.
Our Moscow correspondent Diana Magnay says this is the farthest that targets have been hit within Russia since the start of the war.
One of the airbases was 115 miles southwest of Moscow, while another was around 400 miles from the Ukrainian border in southern Russia.
Magnay says there “are a lot of questions now about how exactly Ukraine managed it”.
“Do they have a drone capable of that kind of distance? Was this a missile? Was there some kind of counterintelligence failure within Russia that allowed a drone from within Russia, perhaps with the help of Ukrainian collaborators?” she says.
Russian military bloggers are questioning this, and how it was allowed to happen, says Magnay.
Some $15m (£9.1m) will be sent to Ukraine to help it clear landmines, Canada has said.
It will provide bomb suits to help protect Ukrainian de-miners, along with funding for advanced remote-control de-mining systems to clear large areas such as farmland.
The assistance will help fund the detection and clearance of landmines, unexploded explosive ordnance and other explosive remnants of war.
A US official previously compared Ukraine’s challenge to attempts to disarm unexploded ordnance in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos following the American war of the 1960s and 70s in Southeast Asia.
We mentioned a few minutes ago that Russia has reported a drone attack near an airfield in its Kursk region.
An oil tanker was set alight, the local governor said.
These videos have emerged purporting to show the fire and black smoke rising from the area.
Sky News cannot immediately verify these.
Fierce fighting continues in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk region, particularly in the area of Bakhmut.
Russian forces have been trying to capture the city since August, and it is one of the few areas in Ukraine where Moscow’s troops are on the offensive.
Ukraine’s military said today it had repelled Russian attacks in or around seven settlements in Donetsk, including Bakhmut.
Russian soldiers were attempting to cut roads to Bakhmut from the west and northwest, it said.
Only about 12,000 people remain in the city – down from 80,000 before the war – Donetsk governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said late last night.
He added there was no electricity or gas.
An oil storage tank was set on fire in Russia’s Kursk region after an alleged drone attack on an airfield.
Local governor Roman Starovoyt said there were no casualties and the blaze remained localised in the area of the Kursk airfield.
Emergency services are at the site, he said.
Sky News is unable to immediately verify the report.
Yesterday, Russia’s Defence Ministry accused Ukraine of attempting to strike the Dyagilevo airfield in the Ryazan region and the Engels airfield in the Saratov region – both deep inside Russian territory.
It said the drones had been intercepted but debris fell and exploded on the airfields, killing three soldiers and injuring four more.
Again, Sky News is unable to confirm this and Ukraine has not directly claimed responsibility for the attacks.
If Ukraine was indeed behind the strikes, it would be the deepest it has gone inside Russia since the invasion began.
The New York Times, citing a senior Ukrainian official, said the drones involved in yesterday’s attacks were launched from Ukrainian territory, and at least one of the strikes was made with the help of special forces close to the base.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian military analyst Serhiy Zgurets said the air bases hit yesterday were the only facilities in Russia that could fully service bombers used to launch attacks on Ukraine.
“It is still too early to say what is at issue here, but the ability of the armed forces of Ukraine to reach military targets deep in the territory of the Russian Federation has a very symbolic and important meaning,” he wrote on the Espreso TV website.
Follow here for live updates on the war in Ukraine throughout today.
First, here’s a reminder of what happened yesterday…
Russian forces launched a barrage of air strikes on Ukraine over the course of the day, although Kyiv says it managed to shoot down most of the missiles.
Homes were damaged and at least two people were killed in the attacks.
Meanwhile, the neighbouring country of Moldova saw disruptions in its power supply during the fresh wave of strikes.
Later in the day, the remains of a missile were found in the north of Moldova, close to the border with Ukraine.
The remains of a rocket has been found in the north of Moldova, the country’s interior ministry said in a statement.
It added the missile was found by local police near the city of Briceni, close to the border with Ukraine.
A statement said: “A short time ago, near the city of Briceni, in an orchard, a rocket was discovered.
“The explosive object was discovered by a border police patrol, which, due to today’s Russian bombings, have intensified their attention.
“In accordance with action plans, the border police intensified patrols and raised the level of attention in the area of Briceni and Ocnictora Inspectorates.
“At this moment, the area where the rocket was discovered has been isolated by police patrol and border police.”
It came as another barrage of Russian missiles struck Ukraine on Monday.
However, there was no indication who had fired the missile.
There will be an increase in power shortages across Ukraine in the wake of the latest barrage of Russian missiles, Ukrainian power company Ukrenergo said.
It added that several power plants “will not be able to work at full capacity for a while” due to the strikes, which hit numerous regions.
Ukrenergo said: “In conjunction with increasing frosts in the coming days, this will cause an increase in electricity deficit in the system.
“In order to maintain the balance between production and consumption of electricity in all regions of Ukraine, an emergency disconnect mode will be introduced.”
Moscow has focused its effort on bombarding key Ukrainian infrastructure facilities since October, appearing to cripple supplies ahead of winter.
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