Ukraine repairs at damaged power plants ease shortage -ministry

Russia retreat Kherson

KYIV (Reuters) - Ukraine has restarted several repaired power units at thermal power plants damaged in Russian missile attacks, easing the country's power shortages, the energy ministry said on Thursday.

Russian attacks on energy facilities have led to widespread power shortages and blackouts for millions of people.

Officials have said about 40% of the system has been damaged.

"The expected deficit at the evening peak will be about 19% of demand," the ministry said on Telegram messaging app.

The power shortage reached 25% at the end of January.

The ministry said warm weather could also help reduce demand on the strained power system.

It said hostilities in the eastern regions of Donetsk, Kherson and Kharkiv were creating "the most difficult situation with power outages".

National power grid operator Ukrenergo said in a separate statement that power facilities had survived 13 Russian missile attacks and 15 waves of drones.

More than 10 gigawatts of generating capacity are under Russian control, including the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, Europe's largest.

(Reporting by Pavel Polityuk; editing by Jason Neely)