Mon. Feb 26th, 2024

KYIV, Ukraine — Ukraine on Monday launched a felony investigation into navy officers who organized a troop-honoring ceremony that was hit by a Russian missile strike, killing 19 troopers in one of many deadliest single assaults reported by Ukrainian forces.

The State Bureau of Investigation stated it goals to carry navy officers accountable for the Rocket Forces and Artillery Day occasion held Friday close to the entrance line in Zaporizhzhia, the place Russian reconnaissance drones may simply spot the crowded gathering.

The carnage sparked a wave of criticism amongst Ukrainians who questioned on social media the planning of an occasion so near the battlefield. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy lamented the deaths of the lads of the 128th Separate Mountain-Assault Brigade of Zakarpattia as a “tragedy that would’ve been averted.”

The investigation announcement got here shortly earlier than Ukraine’s commander-in-chief, Gen. Valerii Zaluzhnyi, stated a prime aide and shut good friend, Maj. Hennadii Chastiakov, was individually killed by an explosive system hidden inside a birthday current as he celebrated together with his household. Native media reported the explosion occurred when a hand-grenade was mishandled and stated the blast additionally injured Chastiakov’s 13-year-old-son.

Writing on his Telegram channel, Zaluzhnyi expressed his “inexpressible ache” for the “heavy” lack of Chastiakov, 39, and indicated a judicial investigation would set up how he died.

Earlier, officers stated Russian drone and missile strikes within the metropolis of Odesa wounded eight individuals and broken an artwork museum that’s a part of a UNESCO World Heritage web site, and satellite tv for pc images confirmed harm performed by a Ukrainian missile strike to a Russian naval ship.

Odesa’s Nationwide Artwork Museum stated seven exhibitions, most that includes the work of latest Ukrainian artists, have been broken by a strike that left a big crater exterior the museum, which was celebrating its 124th anniversary.

Images and video confirmed shattered home windows, doorways, and a few work mendacity on the ground amid particles strewn throughout the galleries.

The assault adopted experiences by the Russian Protection Ministry that Ukrainian cruise missiles aimed on the Zaliv shipyard in Kerch, a metropolis within the east of the Moscow-held Crimean Peninsula, had struck one in every of its vessels.

Satellite tv for pc images analyzed by The Related Press confirmed harm to a Russian navy corvette moored off Kerch.

The satellite tv for pc photos Sunday from Planet Labs PBC present what gave the impression to be a firefighting vessel, in addition to booms within the water to cease oil leaks from the broken ship. What gave the impression to be burn marks might be seen on the vessel, which was nonetheless afloat. These marks weren’t seen on different satellite tv for pc photos captured of the vessel at port.

The measurements of the vessel and its form correspond with a Karakurt-class corvette. In Russian, “karakurt” means “Black Widow spider.”

The ships are designed to hold Kalibr cruise missiles, the identical type of missiles that Moscow has used repeatedly in opposition to Ukrainian targets since launching the all-out conflict on the neighboring nation in February 2022.

The Russian Protection Ministry stated late Saturday that Ukrainian forces fired 15 cruise missiles on the Zaliv shipyard in Kerch, with no less than two placing a ship and the shipyard.

Lt. Gen. Mykola Oleshchuk, the commander of Ukraine’s air power, later wrote in a web-based message that he believed the strike focused a vessel carrying Kalibrs. He additionally prompt Kyiv used long-range French Scalp cruise missiles within the assault.

Andriy Ryzhenko, a captain within the Ukrainian naval reserve, had informed Ukrainian media he believed the vessel struck by the missile was the Askold. That Karakurt-class corvette was being constructed on the port when Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Kerch and the shipyard in July 2020.

The Crimean Peninsula, which Russia illegally annexed from Ukraine in 2014, has been a frequent goal since Putin ordered a full-scale invasion of Ukraine. Crimea has served as a key hub for Russian troops and tools.

The Kremlin-installed head of the Russian-occupied a part of Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia area stated Monday that Russia has began constructing a railway that can run from Rostov-on-Don in southern Russia to Crimea.

Russia constructed a bridge connecting its mainland to the peninsula after it illegally annexed Crimea in 2014. Explosions have hit the bridge no less than twice through the conflict, together with in July, when two individuals have been killed.

Evgeny Balitsky, the Russia-installed Zaporizhzhia governor, stated the brand new practice line is designed to go by the use of Mariupol and Berdyansk, that are Russian-occupied cities on the Sea of Azov, and to make sure trains are protected against Ukrainian shelling.

Russian state information company Ria Novosti, quoted Balitsky as saying the railway would “remedy the navy’s drawback,” in addition to give Russia a path to take grain out of Ukraine.

Between Sunday and Monday, a 77-year-old man was killed and no less than 16 individuals have been injured by Russian shelling and airstrikes in southeastern Ukraine, the nation’s presidential workplace stated.

The assaults on Odesa additionally broken grain warehouses and houses. The bomb blast in entrance of the fantastic arts museum brought on harm to the constructing and collections however there was no rapid evaluation of the size of destruction, a spokesperson for the U.N. cultural company stated.

UNESCO “strongly” condemned the assault on the museum, saying on X, previously Twitter, that: “Cultural websites have to be protected in accordance with worldwide regulation.”

It was the second time the museum has been broken through the ongoing conflict. In July 2022, a blast destroyed the historic glass roof and home windows of the museum.

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Related Press author Jon Gambrell in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Yuras Karmanau in Tallinn, Estonia, and Brian Melley in London contributed to this report.

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Observe AP’s protection of the conflict in Ukraine at https://apnews.com/hub/russia-ukraine

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