A still image shows the impact of an airstrike on the Cultural Centre, in Lozova, Kharkiv region, Ukraine. Reuters
Gulf Today Report
In a deadly Russian missile strike, a recently repaired Palace of Culture centre in Lozova, eastern Ukraine was partly destroyed, media said on Friday.
The media reported that at least eight people, including a child, were injured the powerful Russian missile strike.
President Volodymyr Zelensky said on social media that Russia targeted the Palace of Culture in the city of Lozova, in the eastern region of Kharkiv.
He called the attack "absolute evil" and "absolute stupidity."
Kharkiv Regional Governor Oleg Sinegubov said eight people were injured, including an 11-year-old girl.
Shrapnel had hit all.
A local health official had previously put the number of injured at seven.
A fire broke out in the cultural centre after the missile attack which also damaged nearby buildings, Sinegubov said.
Sinegubov also said that Russian forces had fired three missiles at the 1,000-seat building, the largest cultural centre in the region.
“There is no doubt that the occupiers targeted it directly,” he said on Telegram.
Two of the missiles were intercepted and the fire was put out, he added.
"The occupiers have identified culture, education and humanity as their enemies. And they do not spare missiles or bombs," Zelensky wrote on Telegram.
He added a video to his post showing a large explosion in the building, sending debris flying in all directions, followed by clouds of thick black smoke.
Residential compounds and two passing cars could be seen nearby, one of which accelerated to escape the area.
Defense Minister Oleg Motuzianyk said the situation on the Eastern Front was tense on Friday and appeared to be getting worse.
He told a press conference that Russian forces were firing along the entire line of contact and trying to shell Ukrainian defensive lines deep inside.
Russia has been regularly accused of targeting civilian infrastructure since it launched the invasion of Ukraine on February 24.
The conflict devastated several towns and cities.
Mariupol in the south has suffered near total destruction. Moscow's forces were accused of striking a theatre in the southern port city in March, killing hundreds of civilians sheltering there.
"A residential building in the city center was hit. A fire broke out. So far, three victims are known: a 54-year-old woman and two men aged 51 and 55," Kharkiv governor Oleh Synehubov said on the Telegram messaging platform.
President Volodymyr Zelensky denounced Saturday's attack as "barbarism" that showed Moscow could not be trusted to implement a deal struck just one day earlier with Turkish and United Nations mediation.
Hours after the strikes, a Moscow-installed official in southern Ukraine said the Odesa and Mykolaiv regions would soon be "liberated” by Russian forces, just like the already occupied Kherson region further east.
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