Fifteen dead and dozens trapped after Russian missile hits apartment

Fifteen dead and dozens trapped after Russian missile hits apartment

July 10, 2022

Fifteen dead and dozens trapped after Russian missile destroys apartment building in Donetsk as Putin’s forces continue to bombard Ukraine

  • Six dead after Russian missile strikes apartment building in east of Ukraine
  • Intelligence sources warned Russia is assembling reserve forces near Ukraine
  • These could be used for ‘future offensive operations’ intelligence sources said
  • A regional governor warned Russian forces are raising ‘true hell’ in Ukraine’s eastern industrial heartland, despite claiming to take an operational pause

At least 15 people were killed and five others injured on Sunday in a Russian strike on an apartment building in Chasiv Yar town, eastern Ukraine, the regional governor said.

The death toll could keep rising as Donetsk regional governor Pavlo Kyrylenko warned that at least a further 30 people were trapped under the rubble after it was hit by a Russian Uragan missile. 

‘The rescue operation is underway. Rescuers were able to bring out six dead and five injured,’ Donetsk regional governor Pavlo Kyrylenko said on Telegram.

‘At least 30 others are under the rubble’ of the four-storey building, he said. ‘The building was partially destroyed, and rescuers with a mechanical digger were clearing the area.

‘The rescuers have so far been able to establish contact with two people underneath the rubble,’ Kyrylenko said. 

‘During the rescue operation, 15 bodies were found at the scene and five people were pulled out of the rubble,’ alive, the local branch of the Ukrainian emergency service said on Facebook, adding that rescuers were in contact with three people alive under the rubble. 

Having endured long battles to capture cities in the neighbouring Lugansk region, notably Severodonetsk and Lysychansk, Russia is now trying to push deeper into Donetsk to consolidate its hold over the entire Donbas region in the east.

They have been striking targets along the front lines without making major gains as Ukrainian forces have successfully repelled their attacks. 

According to the governor, 591 civilians have been killed while 1,548 others have been injured so far in the Donetsk region since the Russian invasion began on February 24. 

An apartment building in the Donetsk town of Chasiv Yar was hit by a Russian missile over night, partially reducing it to rubble and killing six killed

Reports state that five people are known to have been injured in the strike, with at least a further 30 buried under the rubble  

The strike on civilian targets come as Putin ‘prepares fresh attacks in Ukraine as he moves reserves across Russia to Ukraine border’, the British Ministry of Defence reports after Kremlin warned fighting ‘hasn’t started in earnest yet’.

‘Russia is moving reserve forces from across the country and assembling them near Ukraine for future offensive operations,’ defence sources said yesterday. 

However, they claimed that Russia’s kit is antiquated and dilapidated, adding: ‘Many of its reinforcements are ad hoc groupings, deploying with obsolete or inappropriate equipment.’

A large proportion of the new Russian infantry units are probably deploying with MT-LB armoured vehicles taken from long-term storage as their primary transport, Britain’s Ministry of Defence tweeted in a regular bulletin. 

The governor of the eastern region of Luhansk, Serhyi Haidai warned yesterday that Russian forces are managing to ‘raise true hell’ in Ukraine’s eastern industrial heartland despite reports claiming they were taking an operational pause. 

Another Ukrainian official urged people in Russian-occupied southern areas to evacuate quickly ‘by all possible means’ ahead of a Ukrainian counteroffensive.

British intelligence sources have warned that Putin (pictured) is assembling reserve forces close to Ukraine for use in future attacks

‘Many of its reinforcements are ad hoc groupings, deploying with obsolete or inappropriate equipment,’ intelligence sources said. Pictured, a firefighter hoses down a house on fire in Konstantinovka, eastern Ukraine

Deadly Russian shelling was reported in Ukraine’s east and south.

Haidai said Russia launched over 20 artillery, mortar and rocket strikes in the province overnight and its forces were pressing toward the border with the Donetsk region.

‘We are trying to contain the Russians’ armed formations along the entire front line,’ Haidai wrote on Telegram.

At the beginning of June, Britain and America both pledged to supply Kyiv with game-changing, longer-range mobile missile systems. 

The first four US-supplied Himars launchers arrived at the front at the end of last month – but too late to prevent the fall of Lysychansk – and a further five have been delivered since.

The Himars is capable of firing up to six precision-guided rockets at targets up to 40 miles away. 

After Ukrainian forces used them to blow up previously unreachable Russian ammunition dumps, one soldier on the ground described them as ‘a godsend’.

And once Britain’s M270s – which have a range of 50 miles – reach the frontline, the Ukrainians’ prospects will be improved even further.

It’s still nowhere near a fair fight, though. Russia’s stockpile of shells outnumbers Ukraine’s by a factor of ten to one. 

And thanks to the enemy’s air supremacy, many oil refineries in the country have been bombed, with the result that the Ukrainians are running short of fuel too.

Last week, Russia captured the last major stronghold of Ukrainian resistance in Luhansk, the city of Lysychansk. Analysts predicted Moscow’s troops likely would take some time to rearm and regroup.

But ‘so far, there has been no operational pause announced by the enemy. He is still attacking and shelling our lands with the same intensity as before,’ Haidai said. 

A regional governor warned today that Russian forces are managing to ‘raise true hell’ in Ukraine’s eastern industrial heartland. Pictured, Kostiantynivka, Ukraine

File photo of an M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) that the US is supplying to Ukraine

Ukraine’s deputy prime minister, Iryna Vereshchuk, appealed to residents of Russian-held territories in the south to evacuate so the occupying forces could not use them as human shields during a Ukrainian counteroffensive.

‘You need to search for a way to leave, because our armed forces are coming to de-occupy,’ she said. ‘There will be a massive fight. I don’t want to scare anyone. Everyone understands all of this anyway.’

It comes as Russian forces began ‘intensive training’ at five military airfields in the landlocked authoritarian state bordering NATO countries Poland and Lithuania.

Last month, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko reaffirmed his support for Putin’s war against Ukraine during a visit to Moscow.

But the development will dismay his generals, who wrote an extraordinary open letter to the despot imploring him to stay out of the war in Ukraine, calling such a move ‘pure suicide’.

They went a step further, labelling the Russians as trying to ‘destroy the sovereignty’ of Belarus. 

In spite of this, some 20 top air force fighter pilots recently arrived by regular train from Moscow, reported Belarusky Gayun, a Telegram channel monitoring troops movements.

Russian ‘intensive’ military training drills were held all over Ukraine Saturday, while an S300 anti-air missile system was spotted being transported near the town of Baranovichi 

A motorist took this photo of a Russian S-300 missiles being transported around Belarus near Baranovichi

Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko reaffirmed his support for Putin’s war against Ukraine during a visit to Moscow last month

Russian (left) and Belarus (right) soldiers shaking hands during joint exercises of the armed forces of Russia and Belarus at a firing range near Brest on the Polish border on February 19

Russia is also said to have taken control of Prybytki Air Base in Belarus where it already deploys an S-400 battalion with Pantsir and Iskander missiles.

The officers of the fifth brigade of the special forces observed that Russia’s highest political leadership have infringed Clause One of the Belarus Constitution.

‘According to this Clause, the Belarus Republic maintains supremacy and full authority on its own territory,’ they wrote. 

‘It also enjoys independence over its internal and foreign politics.’ 

They were also strongly against joining Putin in his war against Ukraine, which they called a ‘friend of our state’ and considered doing so as ‘the destruction of the sovereignty of Belarus.’

‘To join Russia in its fight against Ukraine would be an act of pure suicide.’

Russian and Belarus tanks drill manoeuvres on a firing range near Brest on the Polish border, Feb 19

Helicopters conduct training drills during joint exercises of the armed forces of Russia and Belarus on Feb 19

Nonethless, convoys of Russian missile defence systems were seen moving towards the Belarus border with Poland, said Belarusky Gayun.

‘There are about ten units in the column, among them communication vehicles based on KamAZ and tilt trucks, some pulling generators, and one flies the flag of the USSR’ – something that will alarm the Belarus generals even further.

‘The vehicles are in camouflage colours, with the identification mark ‘V’ on the doors.’

Drills including troops from both Russia and Belarus have been extended to around 15 or 16 July at more than a dozen training bases in Belarus in a move described as ‘atypical’, said reports.

‘About 20 pilots from Russia arrived in Baranavichy.… on a regular Moscow-Brest train,’ said the channel.

‘This is not the first report that the Russian military has again begun to arrive in Belarus on ordinary passenger trains.

‘There is a certain correlation between the arrival of the Russian military and an increase in…air training.’

Russia has previously deployed in Belarus to attack Ukraine.

File photo of a Russian Pantsir C1, self-propelled, medium-range surface-to-air missile system, which are reported to be stationed in Prybytki Air Base in Belarus

File photo of a S-400 surface-to-air missile launcher similar to the anti-air systems Russia has moved into Belarus

But Belarus also borders Poland and Lithuania and the new intensity may show Vladimir Putin and his Minsk ally Alexander Lukashenko boosting defences at the border with NATO.

Three S-300 air defence systems have been seen on the move on the Minsk-Brest highway, in the direction of the border with Poland.

One autocrat came to another’s rescue in the summer of 2020 when wide-scale protests broke out in Belarus over a fraudulent election that saw Lukashenko retain power.

Putin provided security forces, financial aid and even TV presenters to spout government propaganda when the native ones went on strike in protest.

The price for saving Lukashenko’s regime from a democratic uprising now appears to be the sovereignty of Belarus, with Putin in effect occupying the country with his military. 

Inside Russia, in Bryansk region a bomb exploded on a rail track in Bryansk region, said governor Alexander Bogomaz.

This appears to be the latest in a series of sabotage attacks on rail lines in Russia.

The aim of the unknown perpetrators appears to be to disrupt the use of trains to move troops and weapons.

Dozens of such attacks have been reported in recent weeks.

At Baranavichy, in Brest region, close to the Polish border, fighter pilots are reportedly training in takeoffs and quick climbs.

From June 16, Mi-8 helicopter training has been underway.

‘Typically, such training takes place a couple of times a year, but in three weeks their annual rate has already been exceeded,’ said the channel.

The movements by Putin’s forces come after NATO states agreed to boost their presence in countries bordering Russia.

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