Russian forces have launched a deadly missile attack in eastern Ukraine, resulting in the deaths of at least 51 people, according to the chief of staff for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
Thursday's assault on a store and cafe in Hroza village, situated near the Kharkiv region, stands as one of the deadliest incidents in recent months. Zelenskyy condemned the assault as a "demonstrably brutal Russian crime" and a "completely deliberate act of terrorism."
The attack happened while Zelenskyy was at a summit of about 50 European leaders in Spain, as he continued to ask for support from Ukraine's allies. He urged Western allies to bolster Ukraine's air defenses, emphasizing the need to halt "Russian terror."
“Russia needs this and similar terrorist attacks for only one thing: to make its genocidal aggression the new norm for the whole world,” Zelenskyy said. “Now we are talking with European leaders, in particular, about strengthening our air defense, strengthening our soldiers, giving our country protection from terror. And we will respond to the terrorists.”
On Thursday, Russia deployed 29 drones targeting Ukraine's southern areas. Ukraine's air defenses intercepted 24 drones launched in the Odesa, Mykolaiv and Kirovohrad regions.
Furthermore, the U.K. Foreign Office says there's intelligence indicating that Russia might place sea mines near Ukrainian ports' vicinity with the intention of targeting civilian ships and attributing the act to Ukraine, according to the Associated Press.
Additional reporting by The Associated Press.
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