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Russia launched a new wave of drone strikes on Kyiv, regional officials reported early on July 25, and Moscow said it warded off a Ukrainian attack on one if its patrol boats in the Black Sea amid reports that the United States will announce a new military aid package to Ukraine worth some $400 million.

All of the drones launched by Russian forces overnight in the sixth attack on Ukraine’s capital this month were shot down by the city’s air defense, Serhiy Popko, the head of the Kyiv city military administration, said early on July 25.

“The alarm lasted for three hours. The enemy used Iranian Shahed drones. This is the sixth drone attack on the capital this month. All air targets were timely identified and destroyed on the approach to Kyiv,” Popko said, adding that the attack caused no casualties or damage.

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A failed Russian drone attack was also reported in the central region of Cherkasy. No victims or damage were reported by regional officials.

In Moscow, the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement that Ukrainian seaborne drones attempted an attack on one of its patrol boats in the Black Sea, but the attack failed.

“Ukrainian armed forces carried out an unsuccessful attack overnight with two naval drones on the Sergei Kotov patrol ship,” the ministry said in a statement, adding that the alleged attack occurred some 370 kilometers from the port of Sevastopol.

The claim could not be independently confirmed. The Sergei Kotov is one of Russia’s newest warships, being delivered to the navy last year.

Pavlo Kyrylenko, the governor of Ukraine’s eastern region of Donetsk, said early on July 25 that the number of victims caused by an attack on the city of Kostyantynivka the previous day had risen.

Two people, including a 10-year-old boy, were killed, and seven others, including four children aged between 5 and 12, were wounded in the shelling of the banks of a local reservoir where people were bathing, Kyrylenko said, adding that cluster munitions were used in the attack on civilians. The report could not immediately be verified.

Cluster munitions, bombs that open in the air and release scores of smaller bomblets, are widely prohibited because of the risk they pose to civilians. Earlier this month, the United States announced that it had also delivered cluster munitions to Ukraine.

Kyiv has pledged to use the munitions carefully, and only to liberate its territory.

On July 24, two drones were reported to have hit buildings in Moscow, with media saying debris was found not far from the Defense Ministry’s headquarters.

The Russian Defense Ministry said on its Telegram messaging app that two drones “were suppressed and crashed,” and blamed the Ukrainian military.

Also on July 24, a Russian drone attack hit port installations in Reni and Izmail, key Ukrainian grain-export hubs on the Danube just hundreds of meters across the river from NATO and EU member Romania.

President Klaus Iohannis of Romania condemned the attack in a message on Twitter.

Russia’s military has launched military strikes on Odesa and other Ukrainian food export facilities in recent days after the Kremlin withdrew from a UN-brokered sea corridor agreement that allowed for the safe shipment of Ukrainian grain. Kyiv has accused Moscow of targeting grain supplies and infrastructure vital to the deal.

On the battlefield, Ukrainian forces fought 35 battles over the past 24 hours, the General Staff reported early on July 25. It said that Russian counterattack attempts around Bakhmut in the eastern Donetsk region were repelled by Ukrainian defenders.

Bakhmut fell to the Russians in May after months of bloody fighting, but a Ukrainian counteroffensive to the north and south of the city has managed to make some headway in recent weeks.

Ukrainian forces continued counteroffensive operations in the Berdyansk and Melitopol directions of the southern Zaporizhzhya region, the military said.

The United States is expected to announce as early as July 25 an additional military aid package for Ukraine worth $400 million, unnamed officials told the Associated Press on July 24.

The package includes a variety of munitions for advanced air-defense systems, the officials said.

With reporting by Reuters



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