KYIV: Russian attacks on eastern and southern Ukraine killed at least three people on Wednesday, officials said, as Kyiv called for more Patriot air defence systems to battle a surge in missile strikes.

Moscow has escalated aerial attacks on Ukraine in the past few weeks, targeting key infrastructure — including power stations — in retaliation for fatal bombardments of Russia’s border regions.

In Ukraine’s second largest city Kharkiv, which has been reeling from power outages due to the strikes, officials said aerial bombing and shelling killed at least one person and injured 18 others.

“Four children are among the wounded. Apartment buildings were damaged. The number of victims may increase,” the region’s governor Oleg Sinegubov said. President Volodymyr Zelensky urged Ukraine’s allies to speed up deliveries of warplanes and air defence systems following the strike.

“Bolstering Ukraine’s air defence and expediting the delivery of F-16s to Ukraine are vital tasks,” he said in a statement on social media. “There are no rational explanations for why Patriots, which are plentiful around the world, are still not covering the skies of Kharkiv and other cities,” he added.

Published in Dawn, March 28th, 2024

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