Early Friday morning, at least 19 people were killed in a Russian missile attack on a residential area in a coastal town near the port city of Odesa, Ukrainian officials said Russian troops were strategically in the Black Sea. Reported the day after withdrawing from the island.
The pre-dawn attack video showed the remains of a burnt building in the small town of Serhiivka, about 50km southwest of Odesa. According to Ukrainian news reports, missiles struck high-rise condominiums and resort areas.
"A terrorist country is killing our people. In response to their defeat on the battlefield, they will fight civilians," said Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's staff chief. Andriy Yermak said.
Ukrainian security forces said 19 people, including two children, had died. Another 38 people, including 6 children and a pregnant woman, were injured and hospitalized. Most of the victims were in the apartment building, Ukrainian emergency authorities said.
Odesa Local Government spokesperson , Serhiy Bratchuk, said another 30 people were injured in the telegram messaging app.
Withdrawal from Snake Island
An air bomb occurred after the Russian troops withdrew from Snake Island on Thursday. This may mitigate the threat to nearby Odesa. The island sits along a busy transport lane. Russia dominated it on the first day of the war with the clear hope of using it as the stage for an attack on Odesa.
Kremlin described the withdrawal from Snake Island as a "goodwill gesture." Ukrainian troops claimed that the artillery and missile bullets fled the Russians in two small speedboats. The exact number of troops to withdraw has not been disclosed.
The Russian bombing killed a number of civilians early in the war, including hospitals and theaters in the port city of Mariupol . Mass casualties appeared to be more rare as Moscow concentrated on occupying the entire Donbas region in eastern Ukraine.
However, officials said Friday that at least 19 people were killed and 62 more were injured in a missile attack at a shopping mall in Clementuk, a city in central Ukraine, on Monday.
On Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin denied that Russian troops had targeted shopping malls and said his country was not attacking civilian facilities. He argued that Clementuk's target was a nearby arsenal, reflecting the remarks of his military personnel.