Ukraine says rocket attack killed 15 people in Donetsk housing complex

Fifteen people were killed by a Russian missile attack on an apartment complex in eastern Ukraine.

Six people were pulled from the rubble by emergency workers on Sunday, and more than 20 are believed to be still trapped.

Saturday night’s attack destroyed three buildings in a residential area of ​​the town of Chasiv Yar, in the Donetsk region.

Pavlo Kyrylenko, governor of the Donetsk region, said about 24 people were feared still trapped, including a nine-year-old child.

Valerii, who only gave his name to reporters, said he is desperately waiting for news from loved ones who have gone missing.

Rescue workers sifted through the rubble to find people trapped under the rubble

(Nariman El-Mofty / AP)

His nine-year-old sister and nephew live in the collapsed building and have not returned his calls since Saturday night.

“Now I am waiting for a miracle,” he said. We don’t have good expectations, but I’m avoiding such thoughts.”

One of those rescued was a man who had been trapped under bricks and concrete for 24 hours.

Emergency workers say they have been able to contact three other people still alive under the rubble.

One resident gave her name only Oksana to reporters saying she was “thrown to the ground” and the windows in her third-floor apartment were smashed after an explosion.

The 45-year-old said: “My kitchen wall and balcony are completely gone. I called my children to tell them I was alive.”

A sofa left over from the Russian attack on the apartment complex

(Nariman El-Mofty / AP)

Irina Shulimova, a 59-year-old retiree, said: “We didn’t hear any sound, we just felt the impact.

“I run away in the hallway with my dogs. Everyone I know started calling me to find out what happened. I tremble like a leaf.”

Ukraine says the compound is mainly inhabited by people who work in nearby factories, but Russia has denied targeting civilians.

Russia claims that the building is home to “Ukrainian fighters” it says are part of “nationalist units” of the Ukrainian military.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused the Russians of deliberately targeting civilians.

Iryna Shulimova (left) said she ran to a safe corridor with her dogs during the attack

(Nariman El-Mofty / AP)

“Whoever orders such strikes, all those who carry out them in ordinary cities, in residential areas, kill people in a way,” Zelensky said in his nightly address to the people of Ukraine. fully conscious.

“After such blows, they won’t be able to say they don’t know or don’t understand something.”

Donetsk Governor Kyrylenko said Chasiv Yar – a town of about 12,000 people – was hit by Uragan missiles fired from truck systems.

However, Viacheslav Boitsov, deputy director of emergency services in the Donetsk Region, told the AP news agency that four projectiles hit the vicinity and that they were likely Iskander missiles.

Chasiv Yar is 20 km (12 mi) southeast of the city of Kramatorsk, a major target for Russian forces as they move west.

The Donetsk and Luhansk regions make up the Donbas region in eastern Ukraine, where Moscow-backed separatist rebels have been fighting Ukrainian forces since 2014.

Last week, Russia captured the city of Lysychansk, the last major stronghold of the Ukrainian resistance in Luhansk.

Additional Associated Press reporting

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