Russia Attacked The Largest Hydroelectric Power Station In Ukraine

Russia Attacked The Largest Hydroelectric Power Station In Ukraine

Officials stated on Friday that Putin targeted electrical power facilities across much of Ukraine, including the nation’s largest hydroelectric plant, resulting in widespread outages and claiming the lives of at least five individuals.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy revealed that over 60 drones and around 90 rockets were deployed in the assault. This attack occurred one day following Russia’s launch of 31 missiles in a single strike on the capital, marking the most extensive assault on Ukraine’s energy infrastructure this year and one of the largest since the onset of the conflict, as per Ukrainian authorities.

Volodymyr Kudrytskyi, the head of energy utility Ukrenergo, remarked, “Even during the previous winter, attacks on our energy system were not as extensive as those witnessed this night.”

Last winter, Russia intentionally targeted Ukraine’s energy infrastructure, leading to frequent blackouts nationwide. There were warnings that Russia might employ similar tactics leading up to the current winter. However, instead of repeating such strategies, Russia initiated significant missile and drone attacks primarily targeting Ukraine’s defense industry.

Each large-scale air attack diminishes Ukraine’s ability to counter Russian missile strikes. Zelenskyy has been imploring Ukraine’s Western allies for weeks to supply additional air defense systems and ammunition, citing delays in aid from the U.S.

“Russian missiles do not experience delays like our state aid packages. Shaheds do not suffer from indecision like some politicians. It’s crucial to recognize the consequences of procrastination and postponed decisions,” Zelenskyy stated, referring to Iranian-made Shahed drones extensively utilized by Russia in the conflict.

These attacks sparked a fire at the Dnipro Hydroelectric Station, which provides electricity to the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant, Europe’s largest nuclear installation. Rafael Grossi, head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, disclosed that the main external power line to the plant was severed early Friday, although Ukraine’s nuclear energy operator later confirmed its restoration. The plant is currently under Russian occupation, with ongoing concern about potential nuclear incidents due to fighting in the vicinity. According to the country’s hydroelectric authority, the dam at the hydroelectric station was not at risk of breaching.

However, a breach could disrupt supplies to the nuclear plant and potentially cause severe flooding, akin to the incident last year when a major dam at Kakhovka collapsed downstream. Zaporizhzhia regional Governor Ivan Fedorov reported three fatalities and at least eight injuries in the Russian assault.

Attacks on energy facilities in the Kharkiv region resulted in blackouts in the country’s second-largest city and disrupted critical air-raid siren systems. Regional Governor Oleh Syniehubov stated that police would use loudspeakers and walkie-talkies to inform residents of potential air raids and send alerts to cellular phones.

Additional attacks were reported in regions of western Ukraine distant from the front lines, resulting in two fatalities in the Khmelnytskyi region, according to the Internal Affairs Ministry. The power outages trapped 1,060 miners in the Dnipropetrovsk region, prompting evacuation efforts by the private energy company DTEK.

 “The world sees the targets of Russian terrorists as clearly as possible: power plants and energy supply lines, a hydroelectric dam, ordinary residential buildings, even a trolleybus. Russia is fighting against the ordinary life of people,” Zelenskyy said Friday on the Telegram messaging app.

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