Death toll rises to 35 in Russian attack on Ukrainian building

Kyiv – The death toll from the Russian missile attack over the weekend in the apartment building in the southeastern Ukrainian city of Dnipro has risen to 35, an official said on Monday.

Rescuers continued to search the rubble for more victims, regional governor Valentyn Reznichenko said. At least 75 people were injured and 35 others were missing after Saturday’s strike.

About 1,700 people lived in the multi-story building, with local residents saying there were no military installations on the site. The reported death toll made it the deadliest attack at a location since a September 30 strike in Ukraine’s Zaporizhia region The Associated Press Frontline War Crimes Watch Project.

Saturday’s attack on the building came amid a large barrage of Russian cruise missiles in Ukraine.

Russia’s renewed airstrikes came as fierce fighting raged in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk province, where the Russian military claimed control of the small salt-mining town of Soledar, but Ukraine claims its troops are still fighting.

If Russian forces gain full control of Soledar, they could close in on the larger city of Bakhmut. The battle for Bakhmut has been raging for months, causing heavy casualties on both sides.

With the meal war approaching the 11 month mark, the British government announced that it would supply tanks to Ukraine, its first donation of such a heavy weapon. Although the pledge of 14 Challenger 2 tanks seemed modest, Ukrainian officials expect it will encourage other western nations to supply more tanks.

Further developments on Monday:

– Russian forces attacked the town of Zaporizhia, damaging industrial infrastructure and injuring three people, two of them children, the regional administration said.

– The Russian and Belarusian air forces have launched a joint exercise in Belarus, which will last until February 1, the Belarusian Defense Ministry said. Russia has sent its fighter jets to Belarus for exercises.

— Air defense shot down a drone over the bay of the port of Sevastopol in Crimea early Monday, Sevastopol chief Mikhail Razvozhayev said.


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Sarah Y. Kim

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