Russia’s war in Ukraine: Live updates

Locals gather around a shelling crater after a rocket hit the Pisochyn neighborhood outside Kharkiv, Ukraine, on March 9.
Locals gather around a shelling crater after a rocket hit the Pisochyn neighborhood outside Kharkiv, Ukraine, on March 9. (Pavlo Pakhomenko/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock)

The Russian Ministry of Defense said Thursday the barrage of missile strikes launched on Ukraine Thursday was retaliation for what the ministry called “terrorist actions” organized by Kyiv in Russia’s Bryansk region last week.

“High-precision long-range air, sea and land-based weapons, including the Kinzhal hypersonic missile system, hit key elements of Ukraine’s military infrastructure, military-industrial complex enterprises, as well as energy facilities that serve them,” the Russian Ministry of Defense confirmed in a statement.

It claimed that the target was reached and “all assigned objects have been hit.”

“Unmanned aerial vehicles were destroyed, the transfer of reserves and railway transportation of foreign weapons was disrupted, and production facilities for the repair of military equipment and the production of ammunition were disabled,” the ministry said in the statement. 

Ukrainian authorities said Russia fired 84 missiles into multiple Ukrainian regions, including the nation’s capital overnight into Thursday. At least 11 people were killed in attacks across the country, including the shelling, according to regional authorities.

Here’s what happened in Bryansk: Russian security officials claimed a small Ukrainian armed group had crossed the Russian border last week into the southern Bryansk region. Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) said the agency was carrying out operations following “armed Ukrainian nationalists who violated the state border.” Russian President Vladimir Putin described the incident as a “terrorist attack.” A local official said two civilians were killed.

An adviser in Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s office, Mykhailo Podolyak, said the alleged raid was either a Russian provocation or the work of local partisans taking a stand against the Kremlin, denying any Ukrainian involvement.

CNN cannot independently verify the Russian claims, and local media have not carried any images of the supposed incidents, any type of confrontation or an alleged raid reported by Russian authorities.

Ukraine rejects Russia’s narrative: Kyiv responded dismissively to Moscow’s claim the overnight assault on “peaceful cities and villages of Ukraine” was retaliatory. The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense issued a statement likening the Kremlin’s narrative to Nazi propaganda that sought to justify attacks on British civilians during WWII.

CNN’s Olga Voitovych, Vasco Cotovio, Nathan Hodge and Rob Picheta contributed to this post.

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