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Rescuers pull people out of a Ukrainian apartment building that has been destroyed

Image: Reuters Berita 24 English -  On Monday, rescuers pulled people out of an apartment building in eastern Ukraine that was destroyed by ...

Image: Reuters

Berita 24 English -  On Monday, rescuers pulled people out of an apartment building in eastern Ukraine that was destroyed by a Russian missile strike that killed 31 people. President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said that despite billions of dollars in aid from the West, Moscow still has more powerful weapons.

The deaths of civilians brought home the human cost of Russia's invasion, which is now in its fifth month. Russian President Vladimir Putin's forces are pushing to take all of Ukraine's industrial Donbas region after declaring victory in one of its two provinces this month.

In Chasiv Yar, rescue workers were able to talk to two people who were in the rubble of a five-story building that was destroyed on Saturday. On video, they were seen pulling survivors out of the wreckage, where up to twenty-five people were stuck.

But the number of people who died kept going up, the Ukraine's State Emergency Service said, as more bodies were found under the rubble. Zelenskiy said every night in a speech that 31 people had died and nine had been saved from the rubble.

One person who made it out said her name was Venera and that she had been trying to save her two kittens.

She said, "I was thrown into the bathroom, and everything was a mess. I was in shock and covered in blood." "When I came out of the bathroom, the room was full of broken things, and three floors had fallen.

"I never did find them."

One person was taken out of the wreckage on a stretcher, and two bodies were taken away in white bags.

After claiming victory in Luhansk province on July 4, military experts say Russia is using barrages like the one on Chasiv Yar in Donetsk province to prepare the ground for a new push for territory. Since 2014, separatists who were backed by Russia have had some control over both.

Putin says he wants to give the separatists control of Donbas, so on Monday he made it easier for Ukrainians to become Russian citizens.

"Unfortunately, Russia does have a big advantage in artillery," President Zelenskiy and Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte told reporters in Kyiv Monday morning.

"I talk about artillery with all the partners who are ready to help. In fact, there is not enough."

A spokesman for Ukraine's International Legion, a fighting unit made up of foreign troops, said that Russia had about eight times as many heavy guns as Ukraine.

Reuters could not independently check the reports from the battlefield.


The regional governor, Oleh Synehubov, said that Russian artillery, rocket, and tank attacks in Kharkiv, Ukraine's second largest city, killed three people and hurt 31, including two children.

At least one strike hit a city apartment building, where a column of flats had already fallen down.

Valentina Popovichuk, a survivor, told Reuters on a nearby Kharkiv street, "I saw lights, the headlights of rescuers, and I started yelling, 'I'm alive! Please get me out!'"

When her building was hit three or four times early in the morning, she was sleeping. "The people who came to help me came into the hallway, broke down the door, and took me out."

Kharkiv is in the northeast of Ukraine, close to the Russian border but not in the Donbas. In the first few months of the war, it was heavily bombed, but then it was quiet for a while. In recent weeks, however, shelling has started up again.

Moscow says it didn't aim for civilians, but many cities, towns, and villages in Ukraine are in ruins. Since the invasion on February 24, many civilians have died in attacks on a theatre, a shopping centre, and a train station.

Zelenskiy said that since Saturday, Russia had done 34 air strikes.


The war has shown up diplomatic cracks all over Europe and caused energy and food prices to go through the roof.

The West wants to reopen Ukraine's Black Sea ports, which it says are closed because of a Russian blockade. This has stopped grain exports from one of the world's main sources of grain and could make world hunger worse.

Tayyip Erdogan, the president of Turkey, has offered to be a mediator in the grain dispute. He called Putin to talk about it. The Kremlin said that the talks were a step toward a Russian-Turkish summit that is coming up soon.

A summit with Erdogan could be Putin's first face-to-face meeting with a leader of a NATO country since the invasion. If it happened in Turkey, it would also be his first trip outside the former Soviet Union.

As the biggest pipeline that brings Russian gas to Germany for 10 days of annual maintenance, policymakers and businesses were worried about how much Europe depends on Russian energy. Because of the war, governments, markets, and businesses are worried that the shutdown could last longer than planned.

Putin says that the war is a "special military operation" to demilitarise Ukraine and get rid of dangerous nationalists. It is the biggest conflict in Europe since World War II. Ukraine and its allies in the West say that Putin's war is a land grab in the style of the old empires.


The general staff of Ukraine said that Russia had started a wave of bombings as they try to take Donetsk. It said that the widespread shelling was a way to get ready for the fighting to get worse.

The Russian Ministry of Defense said that its missiles hit ammunition depots in the central Dnipro region of Ukraine. These depots were used to store rocket launchers and artillery weapons.

Ukraine is getting ready for a counterattack in the south of the country, where Russia took over land early on in the war.

Iryna Vereshchuk, who is the deputy prime minister, told civilians in the Russian-occupied Kherson region in the south on Sunday that they must leave right away. She gave no time frame.

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