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Estonian PM: Russia wants to destroy Ukraine

Damage caused by Russian air strikes in Ukraine's Odesa.
Damage caused by Russian air strikes in Ukraine's Odesa. Source: UKRAINA RAHVUSKAARDI PRESSITEENISTUS

Russia still wants to destroy Ukraine and its aim has not changed since it started the full-scale invasion, Prime Minister Kaja Kallas (Reform) said on Friday after Russia launched a wave of air strikes that killed dozens of people.

Ukraine's Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal said Russia had targeted social and critical infrastructure across Ukraine, the BBC reported. The overnight attacks came days after Ukraine struck a Russian warship in occupied Crimea.

Damage and casualties were reported from Lviv in the west, to Dnipro and Kharkiv in the east, to Odesa in the south, as well as in the capital Kyiv,

Commenting on the attacks, Kallas said Russia has not changed its objectives since it launched the full-scale invasion in February 2022.

"Russia launched the largest attack yet against Ukraine, targeting civilians. A war crime on a massive scale," Kallas wrote on social media.

"A reminder for the New Year that Russia's aims haven't changed – it wants to destroy Ukraine. Not letting aggression pay off is crucial for European and global security."

President Alar Karis said: "Terrible news as sunrise reveals once again inhumane Russian missile and drone attacks against civilians all across Ukraine. needs our support more than ever and recent $250m US military aid, including air defense ammunition immensely timely and exemplary." 

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the attack on a "maternity hospital, schools & people's homes" calling it "inhumane".

"The world must support Ukraine's victory & authorize a #SpecialTribunalNow to hold Moscow accountable for the crimes committed in Ukraine," it wrote on social media platform X.

Estonia's Ambassador to Ukraine Annely Kolk told ERR on Friday morning that Ukrainian authorities said the air attack was the largest since the war began.

After the attack ended, she said was "so angry at the enemy for its war crimes" and "determined to do more for Ukraine".

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Editor: Helen Wright

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