- Written by Yaroslav Lukiev
- BBC News
Seven people were killed in a Russian drone attack that caused a massive fire in the city of Kharkiv in northeastern Ukraine, local officials said.
Deputy regional police chief Serhiy Plovinov said that among the victims were two parents with their three young children who were “burned alive” in their home.
“An entire street… has turned into a molten infernal mass,” he told Ukrainian television after the attack, which occurred on Friday evening.
Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov said 15 private homes were completely burned.
President Volodymyr Zelensky pledged a “just response” to Russian “terrorism.”
He identified the three dead children as Oleksiy, 7, Mykhaylo, 4, and Pavlo, who was only seven months old.
An elderly couple died in another house that caught fire on the same Kotilna Street in the Nemeshlyansky district, east of the city.
“The Russian aggressor is destroying our city,” Mayor Terekhov said in a video message from the scene of the incident. “But we will overcome. We will win,” he added.
He said the Russian attack left 57 local residents, leaving Russia “without a home, without documents, without money, without personal belongings.”
Ukrainian officials had previously said that a gas station had been bombed, but they later corrected their report.
Kharkiv, Ukraine's second-largest city near the Russian border, has witnessed deadly Russian attacks on an almost daily basis in recent days.
Separately, a man was reported injured in the southern Ukrainian city of Odessa in another Russian drone attack on Friday evening.
The Russian military has not issued any public comment on the reported strikes.
Russian President Vladimir Putin launched a large-scale invasion against Ukraine in February 2022.
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