KYIV: A series of explosions rocked the eastern Ukraine city of Kharkiv early Saturday, sending towering plumes of illuminated smoke into the sky and triggering a series of secondary explosions.
There were no immediate reports of casualties
The blasts came hours after Russia concentrated attacks in its increasingly troubled invasion of Ukraine on areas it illegally annexed, while the death toll from earlier missile strikes on apartment buildings in the southern city of Zaporizhzhia rose to 14.
Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov said on Telegram that the early-morning explosions were the result of missile strikes in the center of the city. He said that the blasts sparked fires at one of the city's medical institutions and a nonresidential building.
In a rebuke to Russian President Vladimir Putin and his conduct of Europe's worst armed conflict since World War II, the Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded the Nobel Peace Prize to human rights organizations in his country and Ukraine, and to an activist jailed in Russia's ally Belarus.
Berit Reiss-Andersen, the committee's chair, said the honour went to three outstanding champions of human rights, democracy and peaceful coexistence."
Putin this week illegally claimed four regions of Ukraine as Russian territory, including the Zaporizhzhia region that is home to Europe's largest nuclear power plant, whose reactors were shut down last month.