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Russia bombed a hardware supermarket in Kharkiv, killing six people, Ukraine said

Russia bombed a hardware supermarket in the northeastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv on Saturday afternoon, killing at least six people and injuring at least 40 others. Ukrainian officials said. This is the latest attack in a long bombing campaign targeting the city, making life for civilians increasingly difficult and dangerous.

Oleh Syniehubov, head of the Kharkiv regional military administration, said 16 people remained missing, suggesting the death toll could rise. He added that another airstrike on Saturday, in central KharkivUkraine’s second largest city, at least 14 people were injured.

“All day today, Kharkiv has been subjected to Russian terrorist attacks. The airstrike in the Kharkiv region has been going on for more than 12 hours,” said President Volodymyr Zelensky write on social networks.

Zelensky added that Saturday’s attack underscored Ukraine’s recent calls for Western allies to provide the country with air defense systems and other weapons capable of shooting down missiles. Russian fire and bomber planes. “If Ukraine had enough modern air defense systems and fighter aircraft, attacks like this by Russia would not be possible,” he said.

Video And pictures Ukrainian officials posted online showing large plumes of black smoke rising from the supermarket as firefighters struggled to extinguish the blaze, which authorities said had spread more than 10,000 square meters.

Kharkiv, now home to 1.3 million people and just 25 miles from the Russian border, was has increasingly been the target of Russian airstrikes in recent monthsin what Ukrainian officials and military experts say is a tactic aimed at intimidating the population and creating panic.

Saturday’s attack came just two days after a rocket crashed into a major book printing factory in the city, killing seven people and injuring 21. Mr. Zelensky said 50,000 books were destroyed in the fire caused by the attack.

The attack on the printing plant shocked the country, with videos shared online showing charred bodies and piles of books reduced to ash. Kharkiv is a publishing center in Ukraine, and many residents see the airstrikes as further evidence of Ukraine’s devastation. The Kremlin attempts to erase Ukrainian culture.

French President Emmanuel Macron condemned Saturday’s attack, write on XThe social media platform formerly known as Twitter, said the strikes were “unacceptable.”

Mr. Syniehubov said the hardware supermarket belonging to the Epicentr chain was hit by two powerful bombs in the middle of the day. This type of weapon, known as a glide bomb, can produce hundreds of pounds of explosives in a single blast and destroy multi-story buildings.

Russia mainly used bombs to destroy Ukrainian positions on the front lines and facilitate their troops’ advance – a tactic that proved particularly successful in capturing the city of Avdiivka in the south. winter in February.

But since March, Moscow has also used bombs to target Kharkov. They are very difficult to shoot down by air defense systems, leaving humans essentially helpless.

Ukrainian officials say the only solution is to shoot down the missile-launching planes. rocket. But these bombs are designed to fly several dozen miles, allowing Russian warplanes to launch them from inside Russia, far from Ukraine’s air defense systems. And Western allies have banned Ukraine from firing Western-supplied long-range missiles at Russia.

“The shelling of Kharkov, all the deaths of people, children – this is their huge advantage. The daily use of bombs – this is their huge advantage,” Mr. Zelensky said in a speech. Interview with the New York Times last week.

Ukraine’s leader has pressed Western allies to lift the ban on firing missiles into Russian territory and increase the number of F-16 jets, which can shoot down distant targets, to Kiev.

“Are there suitable weapons in the world to fight this? Correct. Is there any weapon that is a better match than what Russia has in its arsenal? Correct. Does Ukraine have both of these elements – in sufficient numbers and with permission? No,” Mr. Zelensky said in the interview.


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