Pokrovsk, Ukraine: A Russian rocket attack on a railway station has killed 25 people, including an 11-year-old boy found under the rubble of a house and a 6-year-old found nearby, a Ukrainian official said Thursday.
Russia’s Defence Ministry said its forces used an Iskander missile to strike a military train that was carrying Ukrainian troops and equipment to the front line in eastern Ukraine. The ministry claimed more than 200 reservists “were destroyed on their way to the combat zone.”
The deputy head of the Ukrainian presidential office, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, did not say if the 25 victims he reported from Wednesday’s attack all were civilians. A total of 31 people sustained injuries, he said.
The lethal strike in Chaplyne, a town of about 3500 residents in the central Dnipropetrovsk region. nonetheless served as a brutally painful reminder that Russia’s military force is causing civilians to suffer and testing Ukraine’s resilience after six months of a grinding war.
In Geneva on Thursday, the UN’s human rights chief, Michelle Bachelet, decried the time since Russian President Vladimir Putin sent troops into the neighbouring country as “unimaginably horrifying.” She called on Putin “to halt armed attacks against Ukraine.”
The train station strike took place after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky warned that Moscow might attempt “something particularly cruel” this week as Ukraine marked both its 1991 declaration of independence from the Soviet Union and the six-month point of Russia’s invasion on Wednesday.
The Russian government has repeatedly claimed following attacks in which civilians died that its forces only aimed at legitimate military targets. Hours before the train station attack, Russia insisted it was doing its best to spare civilians, even at a cost of slowing down its offensive in Ukraine.
Elsewhere in Ukraine, three people were killed in the eastern region of Donetsk on Wednesday and one more was wounded, Govenor Pavlo Kyrylenko said on Telegram.
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