Ukraine war latest: Number of people dead in missile strike on city rises; fire at airfield causes damage to Russian plane (2023)

Key points
  • Seven people killed - including young girl - and more than 30 injured in Chernihiv attack
  • Russian warplane damaged in Ukrainian drone attack
  • Putin meets high-ranking military commanders
  • Ukrainian missile 'shot down over Crimea'
  • Volodymyr Zelenskyy lands in Sweden for talksfor first time since Russia's invasion
  • Kyiv's counteroffensive 'significantly degrading' Russian forces
  • Attacks on Russian capital 'send powerful message' | Sean Bell analysis
  • Your questions answered:What options does Ukraine have to continue exporting grain?
  • One of Ukraine's main counteroffensive goals could fail - report
  • Live reporting by Jess Sharp


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In pictures: Aftermath of deadly missile strike in Chernihiv

Earlier today, the northern city of Chernihiv was hit by a Russian missile, killing seven people and injuring at least 90 more.

The roof of a theatre in the city centre was destroyed, and a nearby university was damaged.

Police officers and children were among the people hurt in the strike, which the local governor has said was caused by a ballistic missile.

Here are some of the latest photos showing the aftermath of the attack.


Ukrainian drone 'destroyed' in Belgorod - and another 'jammed over Moscow'

A Ukrainian drone has been destroyed in Belgorod, the Russian defence ministry has said.

The southern region, which sits close to Russia's border with Ukraine, has come under numerous attacks in recent months.

Drones and missiles have often been used to target the area, but Kyiv has not accepted responsibility for the strikes.

Russia claimed to have downed a drone there just two days ago.

The defence ministry has also reported thwarting another drone attack over Moscow.

The unmanned aerial vehicle was jammed and fell near the settlement ofPutilkovo, which is near the Russian capital, it said.

No casualties were reported and no damage has been caused, it added.

Earlier today, Russia said a Ukrainian drone targeted a Russian military airfield in Novgorod region.

The attack sparked a fire and damaged a warplane.


Zelenskyy still resolute - but West wobbles as spring counteroffensive stalls

By Sean Bell, military analyst

Ukraine's much-anticipated spring counteroffensive is now in its 10th week, with limited evidence of any significant breakthrough of the formidable Russian defences.

President Zelenskyy remains laser-focused on his objective of liberating all Ukrainian territory, but if Ukraine's military fails to gain momentum in the coming weeks, what next?

In September last year, Ukrainian forces mounted a surprise counteroffensive in northeast Ukraine and liberated 4,600 square miles (12,000 sq km) of territory in a matter of days.

President Zelenskyy argued that he could repeat that initiative on a larger scale with Western support - all he needed was the weapons to do the job.

The West responded by providing an extensive list of advanced military capability, including battle tanks, missiles systems and ammunition.

However, this all took time to supply and to conduct the requisite training - time that Russia exploited to build extensive layered defensive systems.

Ukraine started its spring offensive in early June, but despite some ferocious fighting the Russian fortifications still appear largely intact.

Although casualty figures are always hard to verify, it is evident that this latest phase of the battle has proven highly attritional, and Ukraine's offensive would expect to suffer significantly higher casualties, up to three times as many, as its enemy.

Ammunition and weapons are being consumed at a huge rate, and there is no simple way (for either side) to replenish stocks swiftly.

And, notwithstanding the various press releases highlighting drone attacks on Moscow, Black Sea Fleet vessels, ammunition dumps and small communities liberated, these are a sideshow to the main event.


Number of people killed in Chernihiv missile strike rises

The number of people killed in the Chernihiv missile strike has risen from six to seven, Ukraine's interior minister has confirmed.

At least 90 people have been injured, including 10 police officers and 12 children, Ihor Klymenko added.

Initial reports had suggested 37 people had been hurt in the strike.

A theatre and a university have been damaged in the attack, which a Ukrainian official previously said caused by a ballistic missile.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy condemned the strike, saying Russia had turned an ordinary Saturday into "a day of pain and loss".

Chernihiv is a city of leafy boulevards and centuries-oldchurches about 145 km (90 miles) north of the capital Kyiv.


Blast reported at explosives examination site in Kyiv

A blast has been reported at a site used by Ukraine's interior ministry to examine explosives in Kyiv.

A fire broke out at a warehouse at the authority's State Research Expert Forensic Centre, minister Ihor Klymenko said.

He said information is still being gathered about the cause of the explosions but that it is not due to a drone or missile strike.

"More than 20 rescuers and five units of equipment from the garrisons of the Kyiv region and the city of Kyiv are involved in extinguishing the fire," he wrote on Telegram.

"Citizens are requested not to approach the fire site for safety reasons."


Six-year-old child among people killed in Chernihiv attack

As we've been reporting this morning, a Russian missile has struck the centre of Chernihiv.

Ukrainian officials initially reported five people had died in the strike, but this has now risen to six after a young girl was confirmed dead.

"A six-year-old child died. On the spot, the patrol men tried to help her, but unfortunately it was not possible to save the child," the internal affairs ministry said.

The girl's mother has been injured and in a "serious condition", it added.

At least 37 people - including 11 children - have been injured in the strike, which damaged a theatre and a university.

The city's governor previously said the city centre was hit by a ballistic missile.

Volodymyr Zelenskyy condemned the attack and, referring to Russia, said it showed "what a neighbourhood with a terrorist state is".

The attack is a reminder of "what we unite the whole world against", the president added.

He also shared this video of the destruction...


Drones equipped with artificial intelligence launched by Ukrainian military

Drones using artificial intelligence have been deployed to the front line by Ukraine's military, the defence ministry has said.

The domestically-made SkyKnight 2 drones have a maximum payload of 2.5kg and automatic flight mode, it said.

They've been described by the ministry as "quite fast, powerful and quiet".

"When the operator determines the target to be hit, the drone will fly to it in automatic mode, because it will already be controlled by the on-board computer," it added.

"Even with a loss of communication due to jamming by enemy, this drone will still fly to the target determined by the operator."

Drones have become a huge part of warfare by both sides in the war.

This is partly due to them being easily adaptable and fairly cheap to make.

Ukraine has used drones to attack military targets in Crimea, and Moscow, and although drones are vulnerable and most get shot down, some do get through and cause damage.


Russian military airfield 'targeted by Ukrainian drone attack'

A Ukrainian drone has targeted a Russian military airfield, according to Moscow's defence ministry.

A fire broke out at the site in the country's Novgorod region and a warplane was damaged, it said.

No injuries have been recorded in the "terrorist attack", it added, saying the fire was put out quickly.

Novgorod lies northwest of Moscow and is a UNESCO heritage site thanks to several medieval Russian churches.

Ukraine typically does not comment on who is behindattacks on Russian territory.

Drone air strikes deep inside Russia have increased inrecent months.

One smashed into a building in central Moscow yesterday after Russian air defences shot it down, disrupting airtraffic at all civilian airports in the capital.


Five people killed and more than 30 injured in Chernihiv attack

Five people have been killed and at least 37 people have been injured in a Russian missile strike on Chernihiv, Ukraine's interior ministry has said.

A total of 11 children are among the injured, it said on Telegram.

A theatre and university are among the buildings damaged in the strike, which happened earlier this morning.

"As a result of the Russian missile strike the room of the drama theatre collapsed, followed by a fire," it added.

The northern city's governor said the centre was hit by a ballistic missile.

The interior ministry shared these photos of the destruction...

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