Correspondent in Moscow
The balance of victims after Monday’s attack with a missile launched against the shopping center in the Ukrainian town of Kremenchuk, located in the Poltava region, southeast of kyiv, rose to 20 dead and 59 injured on Tuesday, the minister said. Ukrainian of the Interior, Denís Monastirski. According to his words,
there are also 21 missing.
However, according to information provided by the deputy director of the Ukrainian Presidency, Kirill Timoshenkeither, «there are more than 40 requests from relatives of disappeared persons». The work of clearing debris in search of corpses or trapped people continued yesterday with the participation of almost 4,500 members of the rescue teams, once the immense fire that was declared could be suffocated.
Monastirski pointed out that “most of the bodies of those massacred in the Amstor shopping center have not yet been identified because they are practically charred.” A second missile, according to the Ukrainian authorities, hit the Kredmash machinery factory, completely destroying its facilities. Its director assured that military vehicles have not been manufactured there since 1989, only automobiles for civil use.
the president of ukraineVolodymyr Zelensky, said on Monday through his Telegram account that, at the time of the explosion, there were more than a thousand people in the shopping center, as evidenced by the numerous images spread by social networks and the media, including which he himself published. He called what happened “one of the most daring terrorist acts in European history.”
The Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday that the missile attack on Kremenchuk was aimed at destroying ammunition “hangars”, the shopping center was not operational and caught fire accidentally. “On June 27, in the city of Kremenchuk, Poltava region, the Russian Aerospace Forces launched an attack with high-precision weapons fired from the air against hangars that stored weapons and ammunition received from the United States and European countries destined for the grouping of Ukrainian troops in Donbass».
“The detonation of stored ammunition (…) caused a fire in a shopping center that was no longer in operation located near the territory of the destroyed plant,” the note from the Russian military department indicates. The Kremlin spokesman, Dmitri Peskov, estimated on Tuesday that the “exhaustive” explanations of the Ministry of Defense “totally deny the version” of the events provided by kyiv.
The Ukrainian Military Aviation believes that two Kh-22 (X-22) missiles, made in Soviet times, were fired at the city of Kremenchuk from a Tu-22M3 bomber while flying over the Russian region of Kursk, bordering Ukraine. One of the rockets hit the shopping center and the other the machinery factory located nearby. The unit from which the Russian planes took off, according to the same source, is located in Shaikovka (Kaluga region). The condemnation of the international community for what happened in Kremenchuk has been general and unanimous. “This is yet another heinous act in a series of attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure by Russian forces. The continuous bombing of civilians is reprehensible, totally unacceptable and constitutes a war crime,” the office of the EU High Representative for Foreign Policy, Josep Borrell, said in a statement. The President of the European Council, Charles Michel, for his part, warned during the G7 meeting in Bavaria that Russia’s intimidation attempts “will not work” and described the attack as “horrendous and indiscriminate”.
The G7 leaders, precisely, described the Kremenchuk massacre as a “war crime” in a joint statement and announced that there will be more sanctions against Moscow. The UN also joined the clamor of rejection against Russia. The spokesman for the Secretary General of the United Nations, Stephane Dujarric, described as “deplorable” the “new wave” of air attacks and bombings that Ukraine has been suffering. On Sunday, another missile attack caused one death and several injuries in a residential building in the Ukrainian capital.
But in Russia there does not seem to be the slightest intention to stop the carnage. Responding to a question about when the war will end, Peskov reiterated that Ukraine can end the conflict “on the same day (…) it is enough that the nationalist units are ordered to lay down their arms, also the Ukrainian military that they give up Afterwards, the conditions set by Russia would be applied”, which, according to the Moscow negotiators formulated weeks ago, includes the capitulation and recognition of Crimea as Russian and Donbass as an independent entity. Ukraine would also probably lose Kherson and much of Zaporizhia. “Then everything would be over in one day,” added the presidential spokesman.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism