President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of “deliberate, purposeful terror” after a missile attack on a town in southern Ukraine left 21 dead and dozens wounded.
A 12-year-old boy was among the dead after the strike on an apartment building and a recreation centre in the town of Sergiyvka, 50 miles south of the Black Sea port of Odesa.
The attacks took place a day after Moscow abandoned positions on a strategic island in a major setback to the Kremlin’s invasion.
Zelensky said 40 people had been injured and warned the death toll could rise. He said: “I emphasise – this is an act of deliberate, purposeful Russian terror and not some kind of mistake or an accidental missile strike.
“Three missiles hit a regular nine-storey apartment building, in which nobody was hiding any weapons, any military equipment. Regular people, civilians, lived there.”
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov repeated Moscow’s claim it was not targeting residential areas during the war, now in its fifth month.
It comes after two Russian cruise missiles hit a busy shopping centre in the central Ukrainian city of Kremenchuk on Monday, killing 18 people and injuring dozens more.
Russian forces, meanwhile, attacked the city of Lysychansk to seize the last pocket of resistance in eastern Ukraine’s Luhansk province. The Russian defence ministry said its forces took control of an oil refinery on Lysychansk’s edge in recent days, but Luhansk governor Serhiy Haidai said fighting for the facility continued.
Enjoy the convenience of having The Sunday Post delivered as a digital ePaper straight to your smartphone, tablet or computer.
Subscribe for only £5.49 a month and enjoy all the benefits of the printed paper as a digital replica.Subscribe