Ukraine’s Kherson loses power after Russian shelling, says governor

Electric power lines damaged by Russian military strikes in Kherson region, pictured on November 30  (REUTERS)
Electric power lines damaged by Russian military strikes in Kherson region, pictured on November 30 (REUTERS)

The recently liberated Ukrainian city of Kherson has lost its power supply after heavy shelling by Russian forces, the regional governor said on Thursday.

The port city, which had endured weeks without basic utilities such as running water and electricity, partially regained its power supply last week after Ukrainian forces recaptured it from Russia earlier in November.

Yaroslav Yanushevych, the governor of the Kherson region, blamed Russian shelling for the new power cut on Thursday.

He said in a statement on the Telegram messaging platform that energy workers were trying to fix the problem.

Russia captured Kherson early in its invasion of Ukraine, which began on February 24. The city, a strategic prize for Russia, is the only regional capital it has occupied in the war.

Russian forces abandoned the city early last month after a successful counter-offensive by Ukraine, sparking scenes of joy as they were welcomed by locals.

But after living under Russian occupation for almost nine months, Kherson residents now face the danger of regular shelling in some parts of the city from Russian troops who retreated only to the opposite side of the Dnipro River.

Other Ukrainian cities are also suffering power cuts after Russian air strikes.

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Wednesday that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s attacks on Ukraine’s energy grid will not divide Kyiv’s allies.

“Heat, water, electricity ... these are President Putin’s new targets. He’s hitting them hard. This brutalisation of Ukraine’s people is barbaric,” Blinken told a news conference in Bucharest following a two-day NATO meeting.

The Ukrainian General Staff said in its daily update on the fighting that the number of Russian soldiers and military equipment had decreased in Oleshky, a town not far from Kherson on the Russian-controlled side of the Dnipro.

“Enemy troops were withdrawn from certain settlements of the Kherson (region) and dispersed in forest strips along the section of the Oleshky - Hola Prystan highway,” it said, referring to a road that runs roughly parallel to the river on Russian-held territory. “The main part of the troops are mobilised personnel.”