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17th Dec 2022

Ukrainian soldier pulls off ‘the impossible’ by downing cruise missile with machine gun

Charlie Herbert

‘It’s almost impossible to hit a missile with a machine gun’

A Ukrainian soldier shot down a cruise missile with just a machine gun as Russia launched a huge barrage of fire against Ukraine.

The soldier known as “Kipish” was praised for pulling off the “impossible” as he downed one of the 76 rockets fired at Ukraine from a Kyiv suburb.

The head of the soldier’s mobile post of the territorial defence praised him for his “lighting-fast reaction” after he apparently hit the ordinance with a gun mounted on top of ammunition crates, the Telegraph reports.

“When he fired, green sparks went off [the missile]. It started to spin, tilted on its tail and tumbled down,” he said.

A commander who identified himself by the call sign “Hera” added: “It’s almost impossible to hit a missile with a machine gun but it was done.”

The remnants of the downed missile landed in the snowy field, according to images from the scene that shows a young man grinning with his prize, holding what looked like the wing of a cruise missile.

It was not immediately clear if other Ukrainian fire may have helped to down the missile, or what type of missile it was.

Ukrainian forces managed to shoot down 60 of the 76 missiles fired by Russia in the morning.

Russian forces fired from the Black Sea and Caspian Sea as they carried out one of their biggest barrages of fire against Ukraine, cutting off power in the cities of Kharkiv and Poltava.

Meanwhile, Kyiv was temporarily left without water, and both water and power supply was entirely disrupted in Kremenchug.

Authorities in Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city, which was heavily shelled in the first months of the war, said they appear to have suffered one of its worst attacks in months. Ihor Terekhov, the city’s mayor, spoke of “colossal infrastructure damage” and promised to “do our best” to restore the power supply.

Power supply was restored on Friday evening to just a fraction of the homes affected by the power cuts.

In a defiant tweet on Friday, the Ukrainian defence minister said that his country would not be “frightened or intimidated” by Russia’s “odious missiles.”

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