Ukraine: Russian missile fired at Kyiv ‘with “Happy New Year” written on it’

Russian drone fired at Kyiv with 'happy new year' written on it

A Russian drone fired at Kyiv had ‘Happy New Year’ written on it, as one person was killed in the attack last night (Picture: Andrii Nebytov)

Ukrainians welcomed 2023 under the sounds of air defence systems blasting Russian missiles and drones out of the sky.

One Kamikaze drone even had ‘Happy New Year’ scrawled on it with a red marker pen.

Andrii Nebytov, chief of Kyiv’s police, posted the photo on his Telegram account, showing the sickening message, alongside a drawing of a bomb.

‘This wreckage is not at the front, where fierce battles are taking place, this is here, on a sports grounds, where children play,’ he wrote.

Explosions were heard across Ukraine minutes after midnight, forcing people to abandon their New Year’s Eve celebrations and head to bomb shelters.

Kyiv was hit particularly hard, with one person killed and 20 reported injured.

As the air raid sirens sounded, some people on their balconies could be heard shouting, ‘Glory to Ukraine, glory to heroes’.

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A glow from explosion is seen over the Kyiv skyline during a Russian drones strike (Picture: Reuters)
Ukrainian soldiers share a toast to celebrate New Years Eve, in a military rest house, as Zelensky said he hoped 2023 would see the return of soldiers to their families (Picture: Reuters)

City mayor Vitali Klitschko shared a picture on Telegram allegedly showing where a fragment of a rocket had hit a car.

He confirmed that explosions had been heard and that the capital’s air defence was working.

The air raid sirens began just after president Volodymyr Zelensky finished his New Year address, in which he praised those who were fighting against the Russian invasion.

He told citizens: ‘I want to wish all of us one thing – victory. And that is the main thing. One wish for all Ukrainians.

epa10384581 Ukrainians hold the Ukrainian national flag near a Christmas Tree in the evening in downtown Kyiv, Ukraine, 31 December 2022 prior to the New Year amid the Russian invasion. Ukrainians can't gather together for the New Year celebration due to the curfew in the country which is in effect from 11pm to 5am. Russian troops entered Ukraine on 24 February 2022 starting a conflict that has provoked destruction and a humanitarian crisis. EPA/STEPAN FRANKO

Zelensky said he hoped Ukraine’s occupied regions would soon be ‘set free’ (Picture: EPA)

‘Let this year be the year of return. The return of our people. Soldiers – to their families. Prisoners – to their homes. Immigrants – to their Ukraine.

‘The return of our lands. And the temporarily occupied will become forever free.’

He added: ‘To the return to normal life. To happy moments without curfew. To earthly joys without air alerts. The return of what has been stolen from us. The childhood of our children, the peaceful old age of our parents.

‘May the New Year bring all of it. We are ready to fight for it. That’s why each of us is here. I’m here, we’re here, you’re here, everyone’s here. We’re all Ukraine.

‘Glory to Ukraine. Happy New Year.’

US Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink reacted to Russia’s aggression on Twitter.

‘Russia coldly and cowardly attacked Ukraine in the early hours of the new year,’ she wrote.

‘But Putin still does not seem to understand that Ukrainians are made of iron.’

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