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Thursday, February 29, 2024

Kyiv says downed six hypersonic missiles in overnight attack

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Ukraine said Tuesday it had downed six advanced Russian hypersonic missiles during an overnight barrage of missiles and drones, in a new show of its bolstered air defence systems.

“Another unbelievable success for the Ukrainian Air Forces! Last night, our sky defenders shot down SIX russian hypersonic Kinzhal missiles and 12 other missiles,” Defence Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said in an English-language statement on Twitter.

The statement came just over a week after Ukraine said it had downed its first Kinzhal hypersonic missile using US-supplied systems.

Ukraine said early on Tuesday that it destroyed all of the 18 missiles and nine drones launched by Russia overnight.

Russian President Vladimir Putin, who unveiled the Kinzhal missile in 2018, described it as “an ideal weapon” extremely difficult to intercept.

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Ukraine had appealed to its allies to strengthen its air defences as Russia pounded the country during the winter.

Kyiv received its first US Patriot air defence system in mid-April, which it said it used to down the first Kinzhal missile.

The statement on Tuesday did not specify what weapon had been used to shoot down the Kinzhals overnight.

Some debris fell in several districts of Kyiv, including on its zoo, injuring three people, mayor Vitali Klitschko said.

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