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15 Mar, 2024 08:55

Ukraine shells major Russian city in border region (IMAGES)

Belgorod came under rocket fire, with multiple casualties and damage reported on the ground, the local governor has said
Ukraine shells major Russian city in border region (IMAGES)

Ukrainian shelling of the capital of Russia’s Belgorod Region has killed at least one resident and left several others injured on Friday, Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov has reported.

Kiev’s forces launched a barrage of rockets in the morning, seven of which were intercepted by the military, the official said. The city of Belgorod is located around 35km from the border with Ukraine and has over 330,000 residents.

At least 23 apartments and several vehicles were damaged by the Ukrainian attack. One rocket landed near a school. The two victims were both men, according to Gladkov. One suffered broken ribs, while the other’s face was cut by glass shards.

Belgorod Mayor Valentin Demidov later said a woman had suffered a concussion, but had declined to be taken to hospital for treatment.

Footage shared by the Russian media showed at least one commercial van burned out after the barrage, while several cars had their windows broken.

The Defense Ministry identified the weapons as RM-70 Vampires, a type of munition compatible with Soviet-designed systems, which Ukrainian forces have used to shell Russian settlements.

Hours later, another rocket barrage was fired at the city. Ten Vampire missiles were downed over Belgorod Region, according to civilian and military officials.

The latest attack killed a shop worker, who sustained shrapnel injuries to his chest and abdomen, Gladkov said. Two men were taken to hospital with a head wound and an eye injury, he added.

Ukrainian forces have launched several attempted incursions into Belgorod Region this week, as well as the neighboring Kursk Region. Three Kiev-backed militia forces, which purport to be Russian collaborators opposing the government in Moscow, have claimed responsibility. Their stated goal was to disrupt this week’s presidential election in Russia.

According to the Russian Defense Ministry, Ukraine has suffered over 1,500 casualties since Tuesday and has lost dozens of heavy weapons, including tanks, in attempts to breach the border.