A Russian rocket hit a shopping center in the town of Kremenciuk in the Poltava region of Ukraine on Monday afternoon. Images from the scene show the building on fire and people fleeing desperately from the path of fire.
According to the latest information, 16 people were killed and 59 were injured after the Russians attacked the mall. The information was provided by the governor of Poltava region, Dmitro Lunin.
According to President Zelensky, about 1,000 people were in the mall when he was hit by the rocket. “The shopping center posed no danger to the Russian army and had no strategic significance for the invaders,” the Ukrainian president told Telegram.
The mayor of the city hit by the rocket, Vitali Meletski, said in a post on Facebook that the rocket attack took place in a crowded area.
With its attack on the Kremenciuk mall, Russia has committed a new war crime, said the head of the Poltava region, of which the city is a part. Dmitro Lunin wrote on the Telegram that the number of dead and injured is still unclear.
This is not the first time Kremenciuk has been bombed by the Russians since the start of the war in Ukraine. At the beginning of the invasion, the Russians attacked with missiles and the city’s oil refinery and other elements of infrastructure.
Kremenciuk is one of the largest industrial cities in Ukraine, with a population of 217,710.
Leaders around the world have denounced the attack, which they have described as a war crime. Rescue efforts are ongoing, and the search for survivors continues. President Volodymyr Zelensky claimed that more than 1,000 people were in the mall at the time of the attack. At Ukraine’s request, the UN Security Council meets on Tuesday to discuss Russia’s latest attacks on civilian areas.
G7 leaders describe Russian rocket bombing of Kremenciuk shopping center as “abominable attack” and “war crime” on Monday/.
“Indiscriminate attacks on innocent civilians are a war crime,” leaders gathered at a G7 summit in a castle in the Bavarian Alps in southern Germany said in a statement that “solemnly condemns the heinous attack” and says Vladimir Putin will have to “account”.
French President Emmanuel Macron denounced “absolute horror” after the Kremenciuk attack and called on the Russian people to “look the truth in the face” in a Twitter post accompanied by a video of the mall on fire. “We share the pain of the families of the victims. And the anger for such infamy,” the French president, who is attending the G7 summit, added in a message broadcast in Russian and Ukrainian.
The world is “horrified” by the attack, “the latest in a series of atrocities,” said US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
US Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink said on Facebook that “the world will hold the Kremlin accountable for its atrocities in Ukraine.”
“In Germany today, President Biden will meet with G7 leaders and President Zelenskyy to continue delivering on our unwavering, unified commitment to support Ukraine and build on our unprecedented sanctions to hold President Putin accountable. The G7 will issue a statement of support for Ukraine, which will include significant new sanctions commitments to further intensify our economic measures against Russia.
Our measures will continue to sap Putin’s military-industrial complex of critical components, prevent the central bank’s foreign reserves from propping up an ailing economy and deprive Putin of the resources he needs to wage his war, and hold the kleptocracy to account for its ill-gotten gains. The effectiveness of our measures will only compound over time to further isolate Russia from the world economy.
The United States, in coordination with the G7, will implement significant commitments, including sanctions on hundreds of individuals and entities that adds to the over 1,000 already sanctioned, take action on evasion by targeting companies in several countries that adds to the over 300 Entity Listings already in place; impose tariffs on hundreds of Russian products worth billions of dollars to Russia, among other things,” reads a White House statement.