Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has warned that Moscow could launch new strikes over Christmas, hours before Russian missiles killed at least five people in an attack on the southern city of Kherson.
“As the holiday season approaches, Russian terrorists may become active again,” Zelenskyy said Friday night. “They despise Christian values and all values in general. Therefore, please heed air raid signals, help each other and always take care of each other.
The Russian attack on Kherson on Saturday also left at least 35 injured, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, deputy head of Ukraine’s presidential office, said on Telegram.
Zelenskyy condemned the assault on Kherson as an act of terror. “These are not military installations,” he wrote on Facebook. “This is not a war by set rules. This is terror, this is killing for intimidation and pleasure.
Zelenskyy sent a stern warning to Russia, according to the transcript of his Friday speech.
“Russian citizens must clearly understand that terror never goes unanswered,” he said.
The warning comes as Russia is likely to limit its strikes on key infrastructure due to a shortage of missiles, according to the UK Ministry of Defence. said Saturday.
“Russia has likely limited its long-range missile strikes against Ukrainian infrastructure to about once a week due to the limited availability of cruise missiles,” the ministry said. A wider ammunition shortage is weighing on Russian military operations, he said, adding that “Russia is unlikely to have increased its stockpile of artillery ammunition enough to allow for large-scale offensive operations.” .
Ukrainian troops have killed another 480 Russian soldiers, the Kyiv Defense Ministry said on Saturday, bringing total Russian casualties to more than 101,000 since Moscow’s tanks arrived in Ukraine in February. The Ukrainian ministry also said that Russia lost another tank and other drones. POLITICO has not independently verified these figures.
Zelenskyy also thanked the Netherlands for its new €2.5 billion support package for Ukraine. While the allocation of the funds will depend on Kyiv’s needs, the Dutch government said on Friday it expects the money to help fund “military aid, support essential repair and reconstruction activities and to contribute financially to efforts to fight impunity”.
Ukraine’s president spoke after a meeting with his military commanders, saying Kyiv is “preparing for different variants of terror state actions” and “will respond”. The country is also trying to step up its diplomatic efforts towards traditional partners and “countries where our influence is still less than what we need”, such as countries in Latin America and Africa, a- he declared.