Officials Claim a Russian Airstrike on a Residential Building in Eastern Ukraine Killed 15 People!
Sunday, Ukrainian officials said that at least 15 people were killed when a Russian strike hit an apartment building in the Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine. They also said that many more people may still be trapped under the rubble.
On Saturday night, a residential building in the town of Chase Yar was hit as Russia stepped up its attacks on cities and towns in eastern Ukraine. Russia is trying to take control of the whole Donbas area.
So far, 15 bodies have been found in the rubble, and the State Emergency Service said that search and rescue work was still going on.
As of 1 p.m. local time (6 a.m. ET), emergency workers had saved five people and made contact with three others who were still buried under the rubble, the service said in a statement.
The emergency service also said that 24 people, including one child, “may still be under the rubble.”
Pavlo Kyrylenko, head of the military administration for the Donetsk region, said on Ukrainian TV that two or three Russian rockets hit the area and that this was “yet another proof of the crimes of the Russian Federation, proof that they are shelling residential areas.”
In recent days, Russian forces have been firing heavily on Chasiv Yar and other towns in Donetsk as they try to break down Ukrainian resistance in the area and move west toward Kramatorsk and Slovyansk.
On Saturday, the Russian Defense Ministry said that its troops destroyed a hangar near Chasiv Yar with US-made M777 howitzers, long-range weapons, and dozens of “militants” from Ukraine.
CNN can’t check the Russian claims on its own. Ukrainian officials said that the attack hurt several people and hit a train station in Chasiv Yar.
Donetsk and Luhansk are the two regions that make up the Donbas. The Donbas is in the east of Ukraine, where the 2014 conflict between Ukraine and separatists backed by Russia began. After his troops failed to take over Kyiv earlier this year, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s main military goal in Ukraine has become this area.
In a telegram on Saturday, the head of the military administration for the Luhansk region, Serhiy Hayday, said that Russian troops have already taken over almost all of the region. He also said that about 300,000 people from the area have been forced to leave their homes.
Lysychansk was the last city in Luhansk that the Ukrainians still controlled. It was taken over by Russia last week.
Russian troops have since focused on the Donetsk region, shelling wide areas along the front line and pushing from the Luhansk region into the Donetsk region, according to Hayday.
Since more than a month ago, when Russia tried to attack this area, the Ukrainians have been protecting it.
“We are trying to contain the armed formations of the Russians along the entire front line,” Hayday said, adding that “the occupying forces achieved minor successes and continue their offensive to the west of Lysychansk.”
Attacking Russian Supply Lines
At the same time, Ukraine kept up its plan to attack Russian supply lines and places where they store weapons in occupied areas far from the front lines.
Ukrainian said a long-range strike hit a Russian military unit in the occupied region of Kherson in southern Ukraine.
Serhii Khlan, a member of Kherson’s regional council, said Sunday there had been “a precise hit at the military unit of the occupiers” in Kherson city. Images and video geolocated to Kherson showed a thick column of gray smoke rising into the air Sunday morning.
Khan told Ukrainian TV that Russia’s defenses were not able to stop Ukrainian artillery fire because the Ukrainian troops were using “modern Western weapons.”
The attack on Sunday came after several explosions happened near Kherson on Saturday. Officials from Ukraine said that their military hit Russian military supplies at the Chornobaivka airport, which is just north of the city.
In the conflict, the areas of Mykolaiv and Kherson have also become hotspots. Ukrainian forces are firing more at Russian storage and supply lines in occupied territory in the south, while Russia is using artillery fire to stop Ukrainian advances.
Early Saturday, the Russian state news agency RIA Novosti said air defenses in Kherson had been turned on.
The pro-Russian military-civil administration told RIA Novosti that there had been shelling coming from the direction of Mykolaiv. The government said on its Telegram channel that air defense is working over Kherson.
The United States has announced its fresh supplies of weapons and humanitarian aid for Ukraine in recent days.
A senior defense official said Saturday that Ukraine will get four more high mobility artillery rocket systems as part of the latest security aid package from the Biden administration. And the US State Department has said that Ukraine will get nearly $368 million more in humanitarian aid.
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