The President of Ukraine published this Wednesday a video in which he sees a russian missile crashing into an apartment building from the city of Zaporizhzhyahours after Kremlin forces launched explosive drones that killed at least four people at a student residence near kyiv before dawn.
The security camera captured the moment when a missile hit the nine-story apartment block located next to a busy highway in the city in the southeast of the country.
“Twenty-five people are hospitalized”, Mayor Anatoliy Kurtiev said on social networks, adding that one person died because of his injuries. In addition, at least two children suffered injuries.
“Russia is bombarding the city with bestial savagery”, Zelensky wrote on Telegram along with the video. “Residential areas where ordinary people and children live are being shot at.”
He called on countries to step up pressure on the Kremlin to abandon its invasion of Ukraine.
The Zaporizhzhia regional administration said that two missiles hit the apartment blockadding that Russia’s goal is to “frighten the city’s civilian population of thousands.”
“It’s hell in ZaporizhzhiaUkrainian lawmaker Oleksiy Goncharenko wrote on Telegram, adding: “There are no military installations nearby”.
However, Vladimir Rogov, an official with the Moscow-appointed regional administration for the Russian-occupied part of the Zaporizhzhia region, claimed the building was hit by a Ukrainian air defense missile launched to intercept a Russian missile. He did not cite any evidence to support his claim.
Russian authorities have blamed Ukrainian air defenses for some of the deadliest attacks on apartment buildings in the past, claiming that the deployment of air defense systems in residential areas endangers civilians.
Ukrainian air defenses shot down 16 of the 21 drones launched by Russia, the Ukrainian General Staff reported. Eight of them were shot down near the capital, according to the city’s military administration. Other drone strikes hit the central-western province of Khmelnytskyi.
The drone bombing and other nightly Russian attacks on civilian infrastructure drew a scathing response from Zelensky, a day after Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin discussed China’s proposals to negotiate an end to the war.
“Over 20 Iranian killer drones, more missiles, numerous bombings, and that’s just one last night of Russian terror,” the Ukrainian president wrote in English on Twitter. “Every time someone tries to hear the word ‘peace’ in Moscow, another order is given there for such criminal attacks.“, wrote.
Early Wednesday, a nighttime drone strike partially destroyed a high school and two university residences in the town of Rzhyshchiv, south of the Ukrainian capital, local authorities said. It was not clear how many people were in the dormitories at the time.
According to the regional police chief, Andrii Nebytov, the body of a 40-year-old man was pulled from the rubble on the fifth floor of a residence. More than 20 people were hospitalized, according to Nebytov.
A few hours earlier, the Japanese prime minister left the Ukrainian capital after a show of support for the country.
On the same day, Chinese leader Xi Jinping left Moscow after discussing his proposal to end the war, which has been rejected by the West as impossible.
Wednesday’s shelling continued relentless Russian shelling as the war has largely stalled over the winter months.
(With information from AP and AFP)
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