July 13, 2024

Children’s hospital hit as Russian strikes kill 24 in Ukraine

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A children’s hospital has been seriously damaged in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, as 24 people were killed in Russian strikes across the country, officials have said.

In Kyiv at least 10 people were killed in a rare daytime attack on the city. Footage from the Ohmatdyt Children’s Hospital showed major damage, with the city’s mayor saying there had been casualties from the blast.

The head of the military administration in the central Ukrainian city of Kryvyi Rih said at least 10 people had been killed there, with three more killed in the eastern town of Pokrovsk and one in Dnipro.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who is visiting Poland where he is expected to sign a security pact, said Russia must face consequences for its strikes on civilians.

“Different cities: Kyiv, Dnipro, Kryvyi Rih, Sloviansk, Kramatorsk. More than 40 missiles of various types. Residential buildings, infrastructure and a children’s hospital were damaged,” Zelensky said.

Plumes of smoke could be seen across the capital Kyiv, while video posted on social media showed the destruction inside and outside of the Okhmadyt children’s hospital.

Zelensky said in a social media post that people were trapped under the rubble of the hospital.

“Right now, everyone is helping to clear the rubble — doctors and ordinary people,” the president wrote.

Health Minister Viktor Lyashko said cancer and intensive care wards had been hit in the blast. Photos from the scene showed young children — some with IV drips — sitting outside the hospital as it was evacuated.

Vitaliy Klitschko, Kyiv’s mayor, told the Reuters news agency from the hospital that the bombardment was “one of the the worst attacks” on the capital since the start of the war.

He said there had been “fatalities” in the attack on the hospital and said the exact number was being clarified.

Elsewhere, Oleksandr Vilkul, head of the military administration in Kryvy Rih, posted on the Telegram messaging app that at least 10 people were killed and 31 wounded following the attack on the city. Of those, he said 10 were seriously injured.

Kryvy Rih is Zelensky’s hometown and has been repeatedly attacked by Russia since it launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

Dnipro regional head Sergiy Lysak said one person was killed in Dnipro city and six more injured. He added that a high-rise building and a business had been hit.

Three people were killed in Pokrovsk, in the eastern Donetsk region, where Russian forces have taken control of a number of villages in recent weeks.

The Russian bombardment comes as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Moscow for a two-day state visit and is due to hold talks on Monday with President Vladimir Putin at the Kremlin.

Moscow has so far not commented on the attacks but has previously insisted its military does not target civilian infrastructure.

The UN’s human rights monitoring mission in Ukraine has said civilian casualties have been mounting in recent months, as Russia renewed its air campaign. A recent report said May was the deadliest month for civilian deaths in almost a year.

Zelensky has spent months appealing to Western allies to supply additional air defence systems.

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