DONETSK, Russia – Explosions rocked the city of Donetsk in Russia-occupied territory on New Year’s Eve, with occupation authorities reporting four people killed in an attack, according to the Novyny Donbasu news portal. The shelling started after midnight Moscow time, sparking a fire in the city center, occupation authorities claimed, and videos posted by residents on social media captured the sounds of explosions.
The Donbas Palace Hotel in Donetsk, where Russian “elite” and Moscow guests were celebrating the New Year, took six hits overnight, said Ukrainian journalist Andriy Tsaplienko. Leader of the so-called Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) terrorist organization, Denis Pushilin, accused the Ukrainian Armed Forces of being behind the shelling, claiming that four deaths and 13 injuries resulted from the attack.
In addition to the explosions in Donetsk, Russia attacked several Ukrainian regions with Shahed kamikaze drones, starting on New Year’s Eve and continuing into New Year’s Day. The main targets were the south and west of Ukraine, with fragments from the drones hitting residential buildings in Odesa and causing one death and nine injuries. Two national landmarks in Lviv were also hit by the Russians, who destroyed the museum dedicated to the Ukrainian Insurgent Army General Roman Shukhevych and damaged the Lviv National Agrarian University in Dubliany. The Ukrainian Air Force reported shooting down a record number of Russian strike drones – 87 out of 90 on New Year’s night.
The attacks are a troubling development in the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, with tensions escalating in recent months. The casualties and destruction resulting from the attacks underscore the volatility of the situation in the region. The actions of the Russian forces have been met with strong condemnation from the international community, and efforts to find a peaceful resolution to the conflict continue amidst the ongoing violence.
In summary, multiple explosions rocked Russia-occupied Donetsk on New Year’s Eve, resulting in four deaths and numerous injuries. The attacks also involved the use of kamikaze drones in several Ukrainian regions, causing further casualties and damage. The ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine remains a significant concern, with the need for a peaceful resolution becoming increasingly urgent.