A Russian missile strike has destroyed a building close to the airport in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv, according to the city’s mayor.
The Ukrainian Air Force says that preliminary information indicates six Russian cruise missiles were fired from the Black Sea several hundred miles away, with four reaching their target and two shot down by Ukrainian anti-aircraft defenses.
Air raid sirens went off across the city shortly after 6am, followed by a series of explosions, witnesses reported. Footage captured in the aftermath showed smoke billowing out across the sky.
The target of the missile strike was a aircraft repair plant in the vicinity of Lviv airport. Mayor of Lviv Andriy Sadovy said that the plant had not been in operation at the time of the attack and there were no casualties, adding that the airport itself had not been hit in the attack.
Situated just 50 miles from the Polish border, Lviv has become a hub for refugees fleeing westwards, with at least 200,000 internally displaced seeking refuge in the city according to latest estimates. In the buildup and following the launch of the Russian invasion, many embassies moved operations to the city as it was believed to be safer.
So far the city itself has been spared from attack, but today’s strike follows on from an attack on a military base close to the city less than a week ago which claimed 35 lives. Sunday’s airstrike on Yavoriv military base is thought to have used Kh-555 missiles, the same weapon suspected to have been used in today’s attack.
Mayor Sadovy said that authorities were sill assessing the damage caused by the attack and will release updates as soon as they have more information.