Lviv (Ukraine), September 22 (EFE).- Russian attacks against infrastructure and residential areas in the east and south of Ukraine continue almost daily as the Ukrainian army advances into occupied areas.
The continued launch of missiles shows that Ukrainian cities remain Russian military targets amid reports of Russia’s partial mobilization or the release of more than 200 Ukrainian prisoners of war.
For example, a series of attacks on a television tower and other infrastructure in Zaporizhia early Thursday killed at least one person and wounded five others, while in Nikopol, about a hundred kilometers to the south, Russian rockets killed another civilian and damaged several houses. .
Later, an airborne alarm rang out across Ukraine, indicating that a Russian missile had been launched and could reach any part of the country.
The situation varies between different cities. In Lviv, when an alarm goes off, shops close quickly but the risk is generally not considered high.
Situation in Kharkov
In Kharkiv, however, the situation is different. “Mostly, you have a minute to hide when the alarm goes off and sometimes it turns on after the impact,” Mykola, a neighbor, explained to Ife over the phone.
Russia continues to attack the city after Ukrainian counter-attacks dislodge it from some of its shells.
“The border is about 40 kilometers away and there is nothing we can do about it,” he said, adding that Russia is firing missiles from its territory.
Most recently, Russia targeted a key power plant, plunging parts of the city into darkness for a day.
Several residential buildings were also attacked in the past few weeks, six people were injured and 10 people were rescued from the rubble on Wednesday.
Back to the cities
Still, more and more people return, Mykola says. “We used to drive our cars at 120 km/h to stay out as much as possible because of the threat of Russian attack. Now it’s a city full of cars again.
Victoria is one of those who returned. “The sound of concrete shells is something I will never forget,” he says. In April, he was forced to flee after a Russian bomb killed a 2-year-old girl and her grandmother near their home.
He says the intensity of the Russian attack has eased, but the situation in the city is difficult with many people out of work and prices rising. However, he emphasized that war brought people together and stressed the importance of unity and mutual support.
Despite news of Russia’s mobilization, Victoria sees only the end of the war: “a victory for the (Ukrainian) people who have fought various invaders throughout their history, mostly Russians,” she said.
Exchange of prisoners
“The mobilization in Russia makes no difference to us,” agreed Volodymyr, a soldier in the Ukrainian army’s 24th brigade, who is on short leave in Lviv to attend the funeral of a friend who fought against the Russians.
“It means we have to hit them harder and it means their damage is also serious,” he said.
News of the release of 215 Ukrainian soldiers spread widely in the country early Thursday morning.
Five commanders of the military unit that resisted the siege of the “Azovstal” plant in Mariupol for almost three months were exchanged for 55 Russian prisoners of war.
They must remain in Turkey “in a comfortable state until the end of the war”, according to President Volodymyr Zelensky, who thanked Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan for his “leading role” in organizing the release.
Another 200 Ukrainian soldiers and 10 foreign nationals, including 108 soldiers from the “Azov” regiment, were exchanged for Viktor Medvechuk, a pro-Russian Ukrainian oligarch and politician who was arrested in April after a failed attempt to leave the country and remains at home. arrested.
The prisoner swap is the largest since the Russian offensive began nearly seven months ago and the second since nearly 50 Ukrainian prisoners of war were killed at the Russian-controlled Olenivka prison on July 29.