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Russian strikes on Ukrainian cities kill at least 38

 VB  Desk

VB Desk

Tue, 9 Jul 24

A Russian missile strike partially destroyed a children’s hospital in Kyiv on Monday, causing terrified patients and their families to flee for their lives, as officials fear more people could be trapped beneath the rubble.

Moscow launched a brazen daytime aerial assault on targets in cities across Ukraine during morning rush hour, killing at least 38 people and injuring 190 others, according to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

Search and rescue operations continued into Tuesday after the large-scale bombardment struck areas in the capital, as well as in Dnipro, Kryvyi Rih, Slovyansk and Kramatorsk, reports CNN.

The death toll includes 28 people, among them four children, in Kyiv, Ukraine’s State Emergency Service said in an update Tuesday after a boy’s body was found under the rubble in the capital’s Shevchenkivskyi district. Two people were killed and at least 16 others injured in the strike on Kyiv’s Okhmatdyt hospital.

The facility is Ukraine’s largest children’s medical center and has been vital in the care of some of the sickest children from across the country. Every year, around 7,000 surgeries – including treatments for cancer and hematological diseases – are conducted at the hospital, according to Ukraine’s human rights ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets.

Videos from the scene of the children’s hospital showed volunteers working with police and security services to sift through the rubble as smoke billowed from the hospital, as staff described how they tried to rush children to safety in the wake of the attack.

Two floors of the hospital were demolished, comprising an area of 400 square meters (4,300 sq ft), the emergency service said, while Ukraine’s health minister Viktor Liashko said intensive care units, oncology departments and surgery units had been damaged.

More than 600 patients were evacuated from the hospital, with more than 100 transferred to other healthcare facilities, Liashko said, according to state news agency Ukrinform.

“The key task here is to get people out of the rubble and provide assistance to those we can reach, as we have already taken out all the first ones,” Liashko said in a Telegram post.

The attacks were part of a rare daylight bombardment on Ukrainian cities, some of which are heavily populated areas far from the front lines. It came a day before US President Joe Biden hosts a crucial NATO Summit in Washington, where new announcements over the alliance’s military, political and financial support for Kyiv are expected.

Biden called the strikes a “horrific reminder of Russia’s brutality.”

“It is critical that the world continues to stand with Ukraine at this important moment and that we not ignore Russian aggression,” Biden said, noting that he would meet with Zelensky during the summit “to make clear our support for Ukraine is unshakeable.”

“Together with our allies, we will be announcing new measures to strengthen Ukraine’s air defenses to help protect their cities and civilians from Russian strikes,” he added.

Meanwhile, seven people were killed in a Russian attack Monday on a private medical facility in Kyiv belonging to the Adonis network, the company said. Of those killed, five were staff members and two were patients, Adonis said.

Russia’s defense ministry on Monday claimed that Moscow had struck “military industrial facilities of Ukraine and air bases of the Ukrainian armed forces” using long-range, high-precision weapons.

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