Attack on Russia’s Belgorod kills five, governor says

The city lies about 30km from Ukraine and has been repeatedly targeted by what Moscow says is indiscriminate Ukrainian shelling

An air attack on the Russian city of Belgorod killed at least five people and wounded 18 others on Thursday, the region’s governor said.

Belgorod, which lies about 30km (19 miles) from the border with Ukraine, has been repeatedly targeted by what Moscow says is indiscriminate Ukrainian shelling.

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Videos shared on social media showed a shattered storefront surrounded by debris, while a woman can be heard weeping in distress. One video showed a body covered with a blanket nearby.

“According to preliminary data, five people were killed in Belgorod, including one child, and another 18 people were injured, five of them children,” governor Vyacheslav Gladkov said.

“Ambulance crews are taking the injured to medical centres. All necessary assistance is being provided,” he said in a post on his Telegram channel.

The defence ministry said it had shot down 14 Ukrainian rockets over the region, which it said had been fired by an RM-70 multiple rocket launcher system.

There was no immediate comment from Kyiv.

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Valentina, a vendor at a nearby store told the RIA news agency she was weighing cheese when she heard “booms”, and told her customers to take cover.

“They crouched down. I said run away. We ran. But where to run to, it’s a building. We sat down in the corner,” she added.

Authorities began evacuating some residents from the city last month after officials said a Ukrainian attack in late December had killed 25 people.

Hundreds of people including around 400 children have already left, in Russia’s biggest evacuation since it launched full-scale hostilities against Ukraine in February 2022.

© Agence France-Presse

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