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Russian attack kills at least 51 people, including child, as bombs target eastern Ukrainian village
5 October 2023, 15:58 | Updated: 5 October 2023, 16:11
At least 51 people have died in a Russian attack on an eastern Ukrainian village, officials have said.
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A six-year-old boy is one of those to be killed in the Russian attack in the village of Hroza, near Kupiansk in northeastern Ukraine.
Several more have been injured, including a six-year-old girl.
Presidential Chief of Staff Andrii Yermak and Kharkiv Gov. Oleh Synyehubov said Russian forces shelled a cafe in the village in the Kharkiv region, at 1:15 pm local time (10:15 GMT)
Ukraine's interior minister, Ihor Klymenko said 300 people were at the cafe attending a wake for a fellow villager who died, Interfax Ukraine reports.
Mr Klymenko said: "In total, 300 residents of the village, one from each yard, attended the memorial service."
Writing on the Telegram messaging app Mr Klymenko claimed: "According to preliminary findings, the venue was hit by an Iskander."
He also added:"One of the wounded died while receiving medical aid" and added that "debris analysis is ongoing".
Ukraine's defense ministry has responded to the deadly Hroza strike on X/Twitter and posted a statement when the death toll reached 49.
Posting a video, showing the aftermath of the bombing, the account stated: "At least 49 people were killed by a Russian missile strike on a cafe and a grocery store in the village of Hroza, Kharkiv region.
"Among them is a 6-year-old boy. The terrorists deliberately carried out the attack during lunchtime, to ensure a maximum number of casualties.
"There were no military targets there. This is a heinous crime intended to scare Ukrainians."
At least 49 people were killed by a russian missile strike on a cafe and a grocery store in the village of Hroza, Kharkiv region. Among them is a 6-year-old boy. The terrorists deliberately carried out the attack during lunchtime, to ensure a maximum number of casualties. There… pic.twitter.com/vjluqThoZn— Defense of Ukraine (@DefenceU) October 5, 2023
The village of Hroza is located in Kupiansk, the east of the Kharkiv region, and has been on the front line of clashes between Russia and Ukraine.
Kupiansk was a major supply hub for Russian forces following the invasion.
In September 2022, Kyiv said it reclaimed parts of the Kharkiv region after months of conflict.
This comes as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy attended a summit of 50 European leaders in Spain to gather support from the country’s allies.
Zelenskyy denounced the attack and called it a “demonstrably brutal Russian crime” and “a completely deliberate act of terrorism.”
He encouraged Western allies to aid in strengthening Ukraine’s air defenses and added “Russian terror must be stopped.
“Russia needs this and similar terrorist attacks for only one thing: to make its genocidal aggression the new norm for the whole world.
"Now we are talking with European leaders, in particular, about strengthening our air defense, strengthening our soldiers, and giving our country protection from terror. And we will respond to the terrorists.”
The summit of the European Political Community was formed in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.
Since the start of the full-scale Russian invasion in February 2022, Ukrainian civilians have faced a number of deadly Russian attacks.
In March 2022, a theatre, which was sheltering civilians based in the port city of Mariupol was bombed.
No official number of deaths was recorded but one official told the BBC that 300 were killed.
However, the Associated Press estimated the number could have been doubled.
In July 2022, at least 23 people, including three children, were killed in Vinnysta, southwest of Kyiv.
In January, at least 40 people died when a Russian missile hit an apartment building in Dnipro.
Last month, 17 people were killed by a Russian attack on the eastern city of Kostyantynivka.