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Russia strikes civilian buildings in Zelenskyy’s hometown, killing at least 11

At least 11 people were killed in a Russian missile strike that hit Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's hometown of Kryvyi Rih on Tuesday, officials said.

Airstrike hits 5-storey apartment block in Kryvyi Rih

People pick through the debris of a bomb-struck building.

An overnight Russian air strike on a densely populated apartment block and warehouse in the hometown of Ukrainian President Voldymyr Zelenskyy left at least 11 people dead — including a young couple in their early 20s — and 25 wounded, officials with the Ukrainian Interior Ministry told CBC News.

Rescue operations in Kryvyi Rih ended midday on Tuesday. According to residents who spoke with CBC News, the blast happened just before 3:30 a.m.

What is thought to be a missile exploded in front of a five-storey apartment building in a built-up part of the leafy, sedate city. It was followed by two other blasts thought to have been caused by vehicle fuel tanks erupting in front of the building.

Nikita Zakharchenko, 23, said he, his wife and one-year-old son were sleeping in the same room when the explosion occurred.

He said he bundled up his family and ran, lacerating his feet on shards of glass in the process.

"I didn't feel it. I just kept running," he said through a translator. "I was very calm. I knew what to do."

A man sits in an ambulance as his feet are bandaged.

Zakharchenko, a delivery driver, said friends on the first floor — a young couple his age — perished in the explosion and subsequent fire.

Sitting in an ambulance with both of his feet bandaged, he said his wife suffered minor cuts but his son is fine.

Heavy equipment and an army of civil rescue volunteer sweepers started to clear away the debris by midday, even as black body bags still lay in the children's playground next to the building's parking lot. Eventually, the victims were gently hoisted into a black coroner's van, which had been quietly rolling in and out of the neighbourhood all morning.

On the opposite side, where another apartment building directly faces the now blackened and gutted Soviet-era structure, a front end-loader collected the shattered remains of people's apartments and lives. Into its scoop, volunteers — some of them wearing simple gardening gloves — tossed huge chunks of wood, the aluminum and plastic frames of blown-out windows, great shards of broken glass and household items.

Zelenskyy condemned the attack early Tuesday in a Telegram post.

Ukraine Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko visited the scene Tuesday. He called it an unjustified terrorist attack on innocent people.

"You can see [for] yourself. There are no military objects here, no barracks," he told CBC News. He also reminded residents to head for their shelters immediately upon hearing an air raid alarm.

A man climbs on a rescue ladder to a burned out brick building.

Klymenko said he expects more air strikes as Ukraine steps up counteroffensive operations in the eastern and southern regions of the country.

"We are just waiting for the attacks," he said through a translator. "You remember how many attacks we had on Kyiv in the last months, even without a counteroffensive. [The number of bombings] all depends on the sick imagination of [the Russian] military and authorities of the Russian Federation."

Ukraine has also blamed Russia for alleged attacks on dams, with the destruction of the Kakhovka Dam in the Kherson region causing severe flooding. Moscow denies those claims and instead says Kyiv deliberately hit it.

It was not immediately clear how many missiles hit Kryvyi Rih. Air raid sirens blared all across Ukraine overnight.

Ukrainian military officials said the air force destroyed 10 out of 14 cruise missiles launched by Russia and one of the four Iranian-made drones.

In his nightly address, Zelenskyy said he was briefed on the readiness and non-readiness of air raid shelters across the country — including in major cities such as Kyiv — after three people died when they were locked out of a shelter in the capital.

"The results are disappointing, to say the least," he said. "On Friday, relevant draft decisions will be prepared, both on those responsible and on ensuring an adequate level of protection for our people in all Ukrainian cities."

WATCH | Missile strike kills civilians in southern Ukrainian city :

Dozens killed and injured in missile attack on Ukrainian president's hometown

5 hours ago

Duration 2:14

Residents Kryvyi Rih — the hometown of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy — are attempting to salvage what they can after a missile attack destroyed several civilian buildings. CBC correspondent Margaret Evans witnessed massive destruction with body bags lying in a playground at the centre of the buildings.

Intense fighting in Donetsk and southern Zaporizhzhia

The strike came as Ukrainian forces pressed their counteroffensive to dislodge the Russian Army from vast swaths of land in the eastern and southern regions of the country.

There is intense fighting along the border of the eastern Donetsk and southern Zaporizhzhia districts, areas that have been occupied by the Russians since early in the campaign.

There have been reports of battles south of the town of Velyka Novosilka along both sides of the Mokri Yaly River.

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Ukrainian forces said they made gains in recent days after seizing several small villages along the river. On Sunday, Ukraine's Deputy Defence Minister Hanna Maliar said advances in the area amounted to between five and 10 kilometres.

The "Ukrainian flag is now returning to its rightful place in the villages of the newly de-occupied territory," Zelenskyy said in his nightly address.

The country's security service is working on a stabilization plan for the newly liberated territory, he added.

It has been cool and rainy lately in parts of Ukraine — Zelenskyy said that has been hampering the counteroffensive somewhat, but did not explain how. He claimed that Ukrainian forces were also making gains in Bakhmut, the ruined eastern city that was the scene of the longest, most costly battle of the war to date.

WATCH | See the aftermath of a missile strike in Zelenskyy's hometown:

See the aftermath of a missile strike in Zelenskyy's hometown

18 hours ago

Duration 0:39

Ukrainian officials said Russia launched a 'massive' and deadly attack in Kryvyi Rih, with several people killed after missiles hit an apartment building and a warehouse.

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Credit belongs to : www.cbc.ca

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