Day 656: Zelenskyi to meet Biden on visit to U.S.

Russia fires eight ballistic missiles at Kyiv, Ukrainian air defenses thwart the attack. On his visit to the U.S., Zelenskyi will meet Biden, and address U.S. senators. 

Russia attacks Kyiv with eight ballistic missiles

Russia fired eight ballistic missiles at Kyiv early on Monday, all of which were shot down, Ukraine’s Air Force said.

“At around 4 a.m. on December 11, 2023, Russian forces launched eight ballistic missiles at Kyiv region. The strike came from the north, preliminarily from Russia’s Bryansk region,” the Ukrainian Air Force said in a statement. 

A series of loud explosions rang out in Ukraine’s capital after 4 a.m., followed by air-raid sirens.

The debris of intercepted missiles fell in the Darnytskyi district, damaging several homes and leaving some 120 households without electricity. Three people, including a child were injured by shards of shattered glass.  

According to later reports, a man had his legs injured by shrapnel, and three women suffered severe stress reactions. They were treated at the site. 

More missile debris were discovered near a warehouse in the Darnytskyi district, officials said.

In a separate overnight attack on Monday, Ukrainian air defenses shot down 18 Shahed drones in the south.

On visit to U.S., Zelenskyi to meet Biden, address senators

On December 12, during his visit to the U.S., Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi will address U.S. senators in the Capitol. He is also expected to hold talks with Mike Johnson, the Republican House Speaker.

Zelenskyi also expects to meet with IMF Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva in Washington, Bloomberg said, citing a person familiar with his plans. The fund’s executive board is expected on Monday to approve the latest disbursement of about USD 900 million on Ukraine’s USD 15.6 billion loan agreed in March. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) plays a key role in Ukraine aid.

U.S. President Biden will host Zelenskyi on Tuesday “to underscore the United States’ unshakable commitment to supporting the people of Ukraine as they defend themselves against Russia’s brutal invasion,” White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.

So far, U.S. Congress has not approved an aid package proposed by Biden. On December 6, the Senate failed to move forward with the package that would have bolstered aid for Ukraine, Israel, and Taiwan.

Last week, President Biden said he’s willing to make “significant compromises” on border policy as he seeks a breakthrough on funding for Ukraine and Israel.

A Call to Restore Crimea’s Toponyms and Why It Matters. Ukraine in Flames #544

Toponymy has always been an ideological tool and no empire has neglected it – the Russian Empire is no exception. Marking the territory with one’s own names meant confirming one’s power. Practically the entire territory of Ukraine was marked with Russian toponyms of the tsarist times. In particular, Crimea underwent large-scale renaming – the Soviet authorities tried to destroy everything that was connected with the indigenous peoples of Ukraine. Watch Ukraine in flames #544 to find out about the decolonization of toponyms, exploring why the restoration of the historical toponyms of Crimea is really one of the instruments of de-occupation of Crimea.


  • Eskender Beriev, Chairman of the Board of the Crimean Tatar Resource Center, Head of the Department of Legal Affairs and Foreign Affairs of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People
  • Refat Chubarov, Head of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people