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Several dead in Russian strike on store in Kharkiv, Ukraine

Photo: Sergey Bobok Agence France-Presse A firefighter intervenes to extinguish the fire in a DIY store, in Kharkiv, Ukraine, May 25, 2024

France Media Agency to kyiv

Posted at 4:22 p.m.

  • Europe

At least six people were killed and around 40 injured on Saturday in a Russian strike on a DIY store in Kharkiv, Ukraine's second city, an attack described as “despicable” by the Ukrainian president.

According to the regional governor, Oleg Synegoubov, this Russian attack was carried out using two guided aerial bombs.

“Unfortunately we We already know that six people were killed instantly […] Forty people were injured, 16 are missing,” he said.

Images broadcast on Ukrainian social networks show the building of the Epitsentr hypermarket with a gutted roof from which a huge column of black smoke escapes, firefighters dousing the fire started by the strikes with water.

According to firefighters, the fire has burned 10,000 square meters, but it is contained.

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Still in uniform, Lyubov, a cleaner at the hypermarket, recounted how she fled the store.

“It’s arrived suddenly. At first we didn’t understand, everything went black and everything started falling on our heads,” she said. “Luckily my phone turned on, thanks to its torch I found where I was, but in front of us everything was already burning.”

The channel Epitsentr hypermarkets sell household appliances and DIY products.

“Russia dealt another brutal blow to our city of Kharkiv – a construction hypermarket – on Saturday, in the middle of the day,” denounced President Volodymyr Zelensky on Telegram, condemning an attack in broad daylight on a target “clearly civilian.”

Russian state agency TASS cited a Russian security source who claimed that a missile strike had destroyed a “military warehouse and command post » in the building.

The regional governor indicated that there was “no contact with certain members of staff” and that “according to our information, visitors could still be in the building.”

“Only madmen like Putin are capable of killing and terrorizing people in such a despicable way,” blasted Mr. Zelensky, attacking the Russian president who ordered his troops to attack Ukraine in February 2022.

French President Emmanuel Macron deemed this Russian strike “unacceptable”. “France shares the Ukrainians’ pain and remains fully mobilized alongside them,” the head of state wrote on X, deploring the “numerous victims, children, women, men,” “families.”

Anti-aircraft defense

On Saturday evening, a new strike hit central Kharkiv, injuring 18 people in an area where there is a post office, a hair salon and a cafe, according to the city's mayor, Igor Terekhov.

The Ukrainian president once again called on his Western allies to provide more air defense systems to his country.

« If Ukraine had sufficient air defense systems and modern combat aircraft, such Russian strikes would have been impossible,” he argued. “Every day we appeal to the world: give us air defense, save people.”

The city of Kharkiv, which had 1.5 million inhabitants before the war and is located near the Russian border in northeastern Ukraine, is regularly targeted by Moscow's forces, who also launched a ground offensive in the region on May 10.

This offensive allowed them to seize several localities and force kyiv to send reinforcements to the sector. Ukraine, however, assured Friday that this assault had been “stopped”.

Russian forces also launched several attacks on Saturday in the region.

They bombed the village of Kupiansk-Vouzlovyi, a railway hub in the Kharkiv region close to the border, injuring five people, the regional prosecutor's office announced in a statement.< /p>

According to the same source, two civilian vehicles, including an ambulance, were targeted by gunfire.

In the same region, Russia bombed the Kupiansk district, damaging a factory and residential buildings, according to the prosecutor's office.

In the east, in the Donetsk region, a bombing killed a 40-year-old woman on Saturday and injured four people, according to the regional governor, Vadim Filachkine.

En Russia, the governor of the Belgorod region, bordering Ukraine, said on Saturday that two people had been killed there in a Ukrainian bombing.

« The armed forces Ukrainian forces fired on the village of Oktyabrsky using a rocket launcher,” wrote Vyacheslav Gladkov on Telegram, specifying that “a man and a woman were” fatally “wounded by shrapnel” .

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116