Russia strikes civilian buildings in Zelenskyy’s hometown, killing at least 6


Ukrainian authorities reported a “massive missile” attack overnight by Russia on the central Ukrainian city of Kryvyi Rih, the hometown of President Voldymyr Zelenskyy. 

They said at least six people were killed and 25 wounded.

Rescue operations continued early Tuesday because the city’s mayor said seven people remain trapped in the rubble of a five-storey apartment block and a nearby warehouse was destroyed. 

Serhiy Lysak, governor of the Dnipropetrovsk region where the city is located, posted a photo on the social media site Telegram showing smoke pouring out of windows of the ruined apartment building.

Zelenskyy condemned the attack early Tuesday, also in a Telegram post.

It was not immediately clear how many missiles hit Kryvyi Rih. However, air raid sirens blared all across Ukraine overnight.

People react near a residential building that was heavily damaged by a Russian missile strike in Kryvyi Rih. The aerial assault was the latest barrage of strikes by Russian forces that targeted various parts of Ukraine overnight.  (Alina Smutko/Reuters)

Ukrainian military officials said the air force destroyed 10 out of 14 cruise missiles launched by Russia and one of the four Iranian-made drones.

In his nightly address, Zelenskyy said he was briefed on the readiness and non-readiness of air raid shelters across the country, including major cities such as Kyiv — this after an incident where three people died when they were locked out of a shelter in the capital.

“The results are disappointing, to say the least,” he said  “On Friday, relevant draft decisions will be prepared, both on those responsible and on ensuring an adequate level of protection for our people in all Ukrainian cities.”

Intense fighting in Donetsk and southern Zaporizhzhia

The strike came as Ukrainian forces pressed their counteroffensive to dislodge the Russian Army from vast swaths of land in the eastern and southern regions of the country. 

There is intense fighting along the border of the eastern Donetsk and southern Zaporizhzhia districts, areas that have been occupied by the Russians since early in the campaign.

There have been reports of battles south of the town of Velyka Novosilka along both sides of the Mokri Yaly River.

The strike, involving cruise missiles, hit a five-storey residential building early Tuesday, engulfing the area in fire. (Alina Smutko/Reuters)

Ukrainian forces said they made gains in recent days after seizing several small villages along the river. On Sunday, Ukraine’s deputy defence minister, Hanna Maliar, said advances in the area amounted to between five and 10 kilometres.

The “Ukrainian flag is now returning to its rightful place in the villages of the newly de-occupied territory,” Zelenskyy said in his nightly address.

The country’s security service is working on a stabilization plan for the newly liberated territory, he added.

In parts of Ukraine, it has been cool and rainy, and Zelenskyy said that has been hampering the counteroffensive somewhat, but did not explain how. He claimed that Ukrainian forces were also making gains in Bakhmut, the ruined eastern city that was the scene of the longest, most costly battle of the war.

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