11 die in Russian attack on hardware store in Kharkiv

Henry

A total of 11 people died after Russia bombed a hardware store in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv on Saturday.

Thick, black smoke could be seen from the rubble of the chain store Epitsentr, which sells household and DIY products.

Pres. Volodymyr Zelensky, in a post on Telegram, said that more than 200 people could possibly have been in the store.

Oleg Synegubov, regional governor of Kharkiv, said in an update about the attack earlier that “six people died on the scene”, while 40 were injured and 16 were still missing.

However, the death toll rose to 11 on Sunday.

“It happened so suddenly. We didn’t even realize it, everything just suddenly started falling on our heads,” said a cleaner at the shopping centre, who survived the missile attack.

French President Emmanuel Macron wrote on X that Russia’s attack on the store was “unacceptable”.

“France shares in the pain of the Ukrainians and stands fully with them.”

The regional governor says there is “no contact with some of the staff” and “according to our information customers may still be in the building”.

Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second largest city, is only a few kilometers from the border and is regularly attacked by Russian missiles.

Synegubov says this city was under “heavy rocket attacks” all day Saturday.

Brutal blow

Another bomb attack later on Saturday hit an area with a post office, a hairdresser and a cafe in Kharkiv, during which 14 people were wounded, said the city’s mayor, Igor Terekhov.

Zelensky visited Kharkiv on Friday and met with officials to discuss the defense of the surrounding region.

He urged world leaders to provide Ukraine with “adequate air defense protection” to “prevent such terrorist attacks”.

“On Saturday, in the middle of the day, Russia once again launched a brutal attack.

“Only crazy people like Putin are capable of killing and terrorizing people in such a hideous way.”

Russia and Ukraine accused each other’s forces of attacks along the border on Saturday.

Russia says Ukraine attacked a small town in the Belgorod region, killing two people and wounding 10.

Ukraine says Russia attacked the village of Kupiansk-Vuzlovyi, a railway hub in the Kharkiv region, in which five were wounded.

A car with two passengers and an ambulance with a driver, a paramedic and a 64-year-old patient were also hit in the attack.

Russia also carried out airstrikes on the Kupiansk district, during which a factory and an apartment building were damaged.