Russian shelling hit a densely populated area in Ukraine’s second-largest city on Thursday., killing at least three people and injuring 23 others with a bombardment that hit a mosque, a medical center and a commercial area, according to officials and witnesses.
Police in the northeastern city of Kharkiv said that the cluster bombs fell on the Barabashovo market, where the journalists of the agency AP they saw a woman crying over her husband’s dead body. Local authorities said that the shelling also hit a bus stop, a gym and a residential building.
The bombing came after Russia reiterated its plans to seize territories beyond eastern Ukrainewhere the Russian army has spent months trying to conquer the Ukrainian region of donbas, south of Kharkiv. Wednesday’s Russian statement came after Ukrainian officials aired plans to try to recapture Russian-occupied areas near the country’s southern Black Sea coast.
The mayor of Kharkiv, Ihor Terekhovsaid the attacks early Thursday were aimed at one of the most populated areas of the citywhich before the war had a population of about 1.4 million.
“Russian army is randomly shelling Kharkiv, peaceful residential areas, civilians are being killed,” Terekhov said.
In the market, the desperate cries of Sabina Pogorelets They went through the air while pleaded with the Ukrainian police to let her hug her husband, Adamwhose body lay partially covered with a cloth next to a small stall. You could see a bloody wound on his head when police officers gently pushed his wife aside so that medical workers could remove her body.
“Please! I need to hold your hand!Pogorelets yelled.
Close, a man hugged his young daughter as he and other visitors were in shock. Emergency teams treated at least two of the injured in nearby ambulances.
“People started to work little by little, they went out to sell things and residents came here to buy things,” said Volodymyr Tymoshko, head of the National Police in the Kharkiv region. “And exactly this place was hit by Uragan rockets with cluster bombs to maximize damage to people.”
The cluster bomb claim could not be independently confirmed. journalists from AP In the place they saw burned cars and a bus pierced by shrapnel.
Kharkiv regional governor, Oleh SynyehubovHe said four people were in serious condition and a child was among those injured in the shelling. Russian forces also shelled wheat fields and set them on fire, he said.
In other places, Russian forces shelled the southern city of Mykolaiv overnightas well as the eastern cities of Kramatorsk and Kostiantynivka, where two schools were destroyed, Ukrainian officials said. The body of a man was recovered from the rubble of the school in Kramatorsk and emergency workers say two more people are feared trapped under the wreckage.
The scattered attacks illustrate broader war goals beyond Russia’s previously stated focus on the provinces of Donetsk Y Luhansk from the Donbas region, which pro-Moscow separatists have partially controlled since 2014.
The Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, he told state television on Wednesday RT and to the news agency RIA Novosti that Russia plans to maintain control over more territory, including the regions of Kherson Y Zaporizhzhia in the south of Ukraine. Moscow’s current strategy also envisages profit elsewhere, Lavrov said.
In Zaporizhzhia, the operator of the Ukrainian nuclear power plant said that Russian forces have planted explosives and weapons in parts of the city’s nuclear plant.where they represent a significant hazard. Energoatom said Thursday that the heavy weapons and explosives are in the building that houses one of the six reactors at Europe‘s largest nuclear power plant. “They continue to cynically and absolutely violate all fire, nuclear, and radiological safety standards and requirements,” the statement said.
Analysts at the Institute for the Study of War, a Washington-based think tank, said the current Russian offensive in Donetsk could result in the capture of the cities of Sloviansk and Bakhmut. But they pointed out that “Russian troops are now struggling to move through open and relatively sparsely populated terrain. They will find themselves with much more conducive terrain for the Ukrainian defenders.”
Ukraine’s military reported Thursday that Russian forces attempted to storm the Vuhlehirska power plant in the Donetsk region, but they said that “Ukrainian defenders forced the enemy to flee.” Ukrainian forces on Wednesday attacked a key bridge on the Dnieper River for the second time in two days, apparently trying to loosen Russia’s grip on the southern Kherson region.
“Russia is prioritizing the capture of critical national infrastructure, such as power plants,” the British Ministry of Defense said on Thursday. “However, he is also probably trying to break through at Vuhlehirska, as part of his efforts to regain momentum in the southern pincer. of their advance towards the key cities of Kramatorsk and Sloviansk”.
Fighting also continues in the region of Luhansknext to Donetsk, said the governor Serhiy Haidai.
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