Russia Sends 45 Drones Into Ukraine

Zelensky makes more changes in military leadership
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 11, 2024 1:15 PM CST
Ukraine Says It Shot Down 40 of 45 Russian Drones
Cars burn after a Russian attack on a residential neighborhood in Kharkiv, Ukraine, on Saturday.   (AP Photo/Yevhen Titov)

Russian forces launched 45 drones over Ukraine on Sunday in a 5½-hour barrage, officials said, as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky continued the reshuffle of his war cabinet at the beginning of war's third year. The Ukrainian air force said it had shot down 40 of the Iranian-made Shahed drones over nine regions, including on the outskirts of the capital, Kyiv, the AP reports. The attack targeted agricultural facilities and coastal infrastructure, officials for Ukraine's southern defense forces wrote on Telegram. They said a strike in the Mykolaiv region had injured one person, sparking a fire and damaging nearby residential buildings.

Another person was injured in Ukraine's Dnipropetrovsk region when a blaze broke out due to falling debris from a destroyed drone, said the region's military administration. Border police in Moldova said fragments of a "Shahed-type drone" were found near the southern town of Etulia close to the border with Ukraine. "There is a suspicion that the detected drone debris is one of the drones shot down by the Ukrainian anti-aircraft system," border police said, referencing overnight attacks launched on Friday by Russian forces on Ukraine's Izmail region. Moldovan President Maia Sandu posted on X that "Russia's war on Ukraine hits close to home in Moldova—again." She added: "Russia's aggression endangers the entire continent. Support for Ukraine must continue."

Zelensky continued his shakeup Sunday of commanders. Kyiv announced that former deputy defense minister Lt. Gen. Alexander Pavlyuk will be commander of ground forces. The post was previously held by Col. Gen. Oleksandr Syrskyi, who was named Thursday as the replacement for Ukraine's outgoing military chief, Gen. Valerii Zaluzhnyi. Presidential decrees also named Yurii Sodol, former head of Ukraine's marine corps, as the new commander of Ukraine's combined forces; Brig. Gen. Ihor Skibiuk as commander of air assault forces; and Maj. Gen. Ihor Plahuta as commander of territorial defense forces. Syrskyi has signaled that his immediate goals include improving troop rotation at the front lines.

(More Russia-Ukraine war stories.)

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