Russia steps up rocket attacks on Ukrainian cities

Aftermath of Russian missile strike on Dnipro
(Image credit: Mykola Miakshykov / Ukrinform/Future Publishing via Getty Images)

Russian rockets struck the southern Ukrainian city of Nikopol on Saturday, killing two people and bringing the death toll since Thursday to around 40, Reuters reports.

The same day, Russia's defense ministry confirmed that Russian forces have been ordered to increase rocket attacks against Ukrainian cities.

According to The Associated Press, least three people were killed and 15 wounded on Friday in a strike on Dnipro, while an attack on Vinnytsia — a city with a pre-war population of around 370,000 located a four-hour drive southwest of Kyiv — killed 23 people and wounded nearly 200 the previous day.

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A spokesperson for Ukraine's defense ministry said Friday that only 30 percent of Russian missile attacks were striking military targets.

Meanwhile, in the Donbas, "Russian forces are likely emerging" from a 10-day "operational pause," the U.S.-based Institute for the Study of War assesses. Having secured full control of Luhansk Oblast, invading forces appear to have set their sites on the city of Slovyansk.

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