Ukraine’s power, water supplies under Russian attack again

Oct 17, 2022, 1:00 PM | Updated: Oct 18, 2022, 7:20 pm
Emergency workers examine debris of a warplane at the scene of a plane crash in a residential area ...

Emergency workers examine debris of a warplane at the scene of a plane crash in a residential area in Yeysk, Russia, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. The death toll from the crash of a Russian warplane into a Russian city has risen to 15. That includes three people who died when they jumped from a nine-story apartment building to escape a massive blaze. (AP Photo)

(AP Photo)

              Emergency workers examine debris of a warplane at the scene of a plane crash in a residential area in Yeysk, Russia, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. The death toll from the crash of a Russian warplane into a Russian city has risen to 15. That includes three people who died when they jumped from a nine-story apartment building to escape a massive blaze. (AP Photo)
            
              Emergency workers load debris of a warplane on a truck at the scene of a plane crash in a residential area in Yeysk, Russia, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. The death toll from the crash of a Russian warplane into a Russian city has risen to 15. That includes three people who died when they jumped from a nine-story apartment building to escape a massive blaze. (AP Photo)
            
              A woman warms her dog in Kivsharivka, Ukraine, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022. As temperatures drop below freezing in eastern Ukraine, those who haven't fled from the heavy fighting, regular shelling and months of Russian occupation are now on the threshold of a brutal winter and digging in for the cold months. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
            
              Firefighters carry the body of a person killed after a drone fired on buildings in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 17, 2022. Waves of explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine's capital as families were preparing to start their week early Monday, the blasts echoing across Kyiv, setting buildings ablaze and sending people scurrying to shelters. (AP Photo/Yevhenii Zavhorodnii)
            
              Soldiers salute as the Ukrainian national anthem is played at the funeral of Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko in Bucha, near in Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              Tatiana Alexeyevna mourns over the coffin of her son Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko during his funeral in Bucha, near Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              Emergency workers examine debris of a warplane at the scene of a plane crash in a residential area in Yeysk, Russia, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. The death toll from the crash of a Russian warplane into a Russian city has risen to 15. That includes three people who died when they jumped from a nine-story apartment building to escape a massive blaze. (AP Photo)
            
              Emergency workers load debris of a warplane on a truck at the scene of a plane crash in a residential area in Yeysk, Russia, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. The death toll from the crash of a Russian warplane into a Russian city has risen to 15. That includes three people who died when they jumped from a nine-story apartment building to escape a massive blaze. (AP Photo)
            
              A woman warms her dog in Kivsharivka, Ukraine, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022. As temperatures drop below freezing in eastern Ukraine, those who haven't fled from the heavy fighting, regular shelling and months of Russian occupation are now on the threshold of a brutal winter and digging in for the cold months. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
            
              Firefighters carry the body of a person killed after a drone fired on buildings in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 17, 2022. Waves of explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine's capital as families were preparing to start their week early Monday, the blasts echoing across Kyiv, setting buildings ablaze and sending people scurrying to shelters. (AP Photo/Yevhenii Zavhorodnii)
            
              Soldiers salute as the Ukrainian national anthem is played at the funeral of Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko in Bucha, near in Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              Tatiana Alexeyevna mourns over the coffin of her son Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko during his funeral in Bucha, near Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              A woman warms her dog in Kivsharivka, Ukraine, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022. As temperatures drop below freezing in eastern Ukraine, those who haven't fled from the heavy fighting, regular shelling and months of Russian occupation are now on the threshold of a brutal winter and digging in for the cold months. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
            
              Firefighters carry the body of a person killed after a drone fired on buildings in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 17, 2022. Waves of explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine's capital as families were preparing to start their week early Monday, the blasts echoing across Kyiv, setting buildings ablaze and sending people scurrying to shelters. (AP Photo/Yevhenii Zavhorodnii)
            
              Soldiers salute as the Ukrainian national anthem is played at the funeral of Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko in Bucha, near in Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              Tatiana Alexeyevna mourns over the coffin of her son Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko during his funeral in Bucha, near Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              A woman warms her dog in Kivsharivka, Ukraine, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022. As temperatures drop below freezing in eastern Ukraine, those who haven't fled from the heavy fighting, regular shelling and months of Russian occupation are now on the threshold of a brutal winter and digging in for the cold months. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
            
              Firefighters carry the body of a person killed after a drone fired on buildings in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 17, 2022. Waves of explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine's capital as families were preparing to start their week early Monday, the blasts echoing across Kyiv, setting buildings ablaze and sending people scurrying to shelters. (AP Photo/Yevhenii Zavhorodnii)
            
              Soldiers salute as the Ukrainian national anthem is played at the funeral of Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko in Bucha, near in Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              A local man cuts pieces of firewood in Kivsharivka, Ukraine, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022. As temperatures drop below freezing in eastern Ukraine, those who haven't fled from the heavy fighting, regular shelling and months of Russian occupation are now on the threshold of a brutal winter and digging in for the cold months. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
            
              Tatiana Alexeyevna mourns over the coffin of her son Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko during his funeral in Bucha, near Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              A woman warms her dog in Kivsharivka, Ukraine, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2022. As temperatures drop below freezing in eastern Ukraine, those who haven't fled from the heavy fighting, regular shelling and months of Russian occupation are now on the threshold of a brutal winter and digging in for the cold months. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
            
              Firefighters carry the body of a person killed after a drone fired on buildings in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 17, 2022. Waves of explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine's capital as families were preparing to start their week early Monday, the blasts echoing across Kyiv, setting buildings ablaze and sending people scurrying to shelters. (AP Photo/Yevhenii Zavhorodnii)
            
              Soldiers salute as the Ukrainian national anthem is played at the funeral of Colonel Oleksiy Telizhenko in Bucha, near in Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. In March, Colonel Oleksiy was abducted by Russian soldiers from his home in Bucha, six months later his body was found with signals of torture buried in a forest not far away from his village. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
            
              Firefighters carry the body of a person killed after a drone fired on buildings in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 17, 2022. Waves of explosive-laden suicide drones struck Ukraine's capital as families were preparing to start their week early Monday, the blasts echoing across Kyiv, setting buildings ablaze and sending people scurrying to shelters. (AP Photo/Yevhenii Zavhorodnii)
            
              A drone is seen in the sky seconds before it fired on buildings in Kyiv, Ukraine, Monday, Oct. 17, 2022. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
            
              Smoke rises after Russian shelling in Kyiv, Ukraine, Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2022. (AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)
            
              FILE - This undated photograph released by the Ukrainian military's Strategic Communications Directorate shows the wreckage of what Kyiv has described as an Iranian Shahed drone downed near Kupiansk, Ukraine. Ukraine's military claimed on Sept. 13, 2022, for the first time that it encountered an Iranian-supplied suicide drone used by Russia on the battlefield. Russia’s unleashing of successive waves of the Iranian-made Shahed drones over Ukraine has multiple aims — take out key targets, crush morale and ultimately drain the enemy's war chest and weapons trying to defend against them as the conflict evolves into a longer war of attrition. (Ukrainian military's Strategic Communications Directorate via AP, File)

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Airstrikes cut power and water supplies to hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians on Tuesday, part of what the country’s president called an expanding Russian campaign to drive the nation into the cold and dark and make peace talks impossible.

President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said nearly one-third of Ukraine’s power stations have been destroyed in the past week, “causing massive blackouts across the country.”

“No space left for negotiations with Putin’s regime,” he tweeted.

Depriving people of water, electricity and heat as winter begins to bite, and the broadening use of so-called suicide drones that nosedive into targets have opened a new phase in Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war. The bombardments appear aimed at wearing down the notable resilience Ukrainians have shown in the nearly eight months since Moscow invaded.

Meanwhile, along the front lines, things remained “very difficult” for Russian troops in the southern region and city of Kherson, according to Russia’s new commander, Sergei Surovikin.

He told reporters in Moscow that the Russian military would help evacuate civilians ahead of an expected Ukrainian offensive.

Kherson is one of four regions illegally annexed by Russia last month. Regional head Vladimir Saldo said Tuesday that residents of Berislav, Belozersky, Snigiryovsky and Alexandrovsky were to be moved across the Dnieper River, away from Russian troops building “large-scale defensive fortifications.”

Saldo urged residents to stay calm and said they would “remain under the reliable protection of the Russian army.”

On Friday, too, Saldo had urged Kherson residents to evacuate. Russian authorities promise free travel and accommodations to those who leave for Russia, the only route out that they have offered.

Across Ukraine, even far from front lines, basic utilities are no longer certainties, with daily Russian strikes reaching far into the country and damaging key facilities.

The latest city shorn of power was Zhytomyr, home to military bases, industries and leafy boulevards, about 140 kilometers (85 miles) west of Kyiv. The mayor said the whole city of 250,000 lost power and also water initially. Repairs quickly reconnected some homes but 150,000 people were still without electricity hours after the morning strike, regional authorities said.

Pavlo Raboschuk, a 33-year-old computer repairman in Zhytomyr, said that only small shops that could get by without electricity were open on his route to work.

“Only swear words come to mind,” he said. He’s bracing “for a tough and dark winter,” with dehydrated foods, warm clothes and batteries already stockpiled at home.

City hospitals switched to backup power after the double missile strike Tuesday on an energy facility, said Mayor Serhiy Sukhomlyn.

In the capital, Kyiv, missile strikes damaged two power facilities and killed two people, city authorities said. The attack left 50,000 people without power for a few hours, the facilities’ operator said.

Missiles also severely damaged an energy facility in the south-central city of Dnipro, and strikes hit the northeastern region of Sumy.

Russia is mixing up its modes of attack.

Suicide drones set ablaze an infrastructure facility in the partly Russian-occupied southern Zaporizhzhia region, the regional governor said.

Air-defense S-300 missiles, which Russia has been repurposing as ground-attack weapons as its stocks diminish, were used to strike the southern city of Mykolaiv. In the eastern city of Kharkiv, eight rockets fired from across the nearby border with Russia hit an industrial area, the regional governor said.

In Zhytomyr, school director Iryna Kolodzynska had students back at their desks within 30 minutes of the air raid all-clear. Without power for their computers, they used the class board to work on math equations.

“We must not break down,” she said. “There are regions that suffered much more from the war than we did.”

Waves of the explosives-laden suicide drones also struck Kyiv on Monday. One slammed into a residential building, killing four people.

The Iranian-made Shahed drones that hit Kyiv have also been widely used elsewhere in Ukraine in recent weeks. An Associated Press photographer caught one on camera Monday, its triangle-shaped wing and pointed warhead clearly visible, though the Kremlin refused to confirm their use.

The U.N. Security Council scheduled closed consultations Wednesday afternoon on the Iranian-made drones at the request of the United States, Britain and France. They contend that supplying them to Russia violates the 2015 U.N. Security Council resolution that endorsed the 2015 nuclear deal between Iran and six countries.

A Western official, speaking on condition of anonymity to discuss intelligence, said Russia is pursuing a strategy of “attempting to destroy Ukraine’s electricity network” with long-range strikes that are causing civilian casualties rather than degrading its military.

The official said the Iranian drones “are playing an increasingly significant role, although we can see that Ukraine is effectively neutralizing many of them before they hit their targets.”

In a televised address on Monday night, Zelenskyy said Russia is using the drones because it is losing ground in the war.

“Russia doesn’t have any chance on the battlefield, and it tries to compensate for its military defeats with terror,” he said. “Why this terror? To put pressure on us, on Europe, on the entire world.”

Zelenskyy’s tweet ruling out talks with Putin wasn’t the first time he’s said that he won’t negotiate with the Russian leader. Russia and Ukraine held several rounds of talks in the first month after Moscow’s invasion but they fell apart. The Kremlin has said talks could only be possible if Ukraine meets Russian demands and accepts its land-grabs of Ukrainian territory. Ukraine has flatly ruled out talks on those terms

In other developments:

— Ukraine’s nuclear energy operator said Russian forces have detained two more senior employees at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant. Energoatom said their whereabouts are unknown. Also unknown are the whereabouts of another executive who was detained earlier in October.

— In Russia, the death toll from Monday’s crash of a Russian warplane into a residential area rose to 15. The Su-34 bomber came down in the port city of Yeysk after one of its engines caught fire during takeoff for a training mission, the Defense Ministry said. Both crew members bailed out safely, but the plane struck a neighborhood, causing a huge blaze, officials said.

___

Follow AP’s coverage of the war in Ukraine: https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine

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Ukraine’s power, water supplies under Russian attack again