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Ukraine war: Two killed, 33 injured after attack on Kharkiv store
Ukraine war: Two killed, 33 injured after attack on Kharkiv store

Kiev, May 26 (IANS/DPA): The Russian military reportedly attacked a DIY store in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv on Saturday with at least one glide bomb, killing two and wounding at least 33, because it said Ukraine had hidden a weapons cache in the store.

"The tactic of human shields is being used in Kharkiv - they (the Ukrainians) have set up a military camp and a command post in a shopping centre, which was discovered by our intelligence service," the state agency TASS quoted an unnamed representative of the Russian leadership as saying.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said the attack is "another manifestation of Russian madness".

"Only madmen like (Russian President Vladimir) Putin are capable of killing and terrorizing people in such a heinous way," the Ukrainian leader said in his daily video address on Saturday evening.

Local civil defence said at least two people died and 33 were injured. Zelensky said around 200 people were in the Epicentr home improvement store at the time of the attack.

Video shown on Ukrainian television showed large amounts of black smoke billowing from the store and spreading over Kharkiv.

The firefighting crew was shown fighting their way into the destroyed building.

Zelensky once again appealed to Ukraine's supporters for more air defence systems.

While he acknowledged that another Russian Su-25 fighter jet was shot down in the east of the country on Saturday, he said if Ukraine "had more adequate, more modern air defence systems and aircraft, the Russian air force would of course have collapsed long ago, just like its Black Sea fleet."

Earlier in the day Ukraine's State Investigation Bureau said it had launched a criminal investigation of 28 commanders over military failures at the start of Russia's recent offensive near Kharkiv.

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