A Russian attack on a school building in the Bilohirivka village of Luhansk, Ukraine, left at least 62 presumed dead, officials said.
Luhansk Oblast Governor Serhiy Haidai announced on Telegram Saturday that a Russian airstrike hit the school which contained about 90 people, causing severe damage and igniting a fire, Ukraine’s Ukrinform reported.
Thirty people were safely evacuated from the building’s rubble but the other 60 people remain trapped and are presumed to be dead, the governor said.
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“All 60 people who remained under the rubble of the buildings have most likely died. These are real atrocities of the ‘Russian world’: the cynical shelling of a school with a bomb shelter, the killing of children in Pryvillia. The Russians don’t care who they kill. If they can’t kill a soldier, they will kill an innocent child,” Haidai said.
A view shows a residential building, which according to Ukraine’s local officials was damaged by shelling, in the town of Vrubivka, in the Luhansk region, Ukraine, in this handout picture released Feb. 17, 2022. Press Service of the National Police of Ukraine in Luhansk Region/Handout via REUTERS
(Press Service of the Popasna Town Civil-Military Administration/Handout via REUTERS)
Rescue teams were able to extinguish the flame after four hours and have since removed two bodies from under debris, according to the report.
The governor said the school building was the last refuge in the town for civilians after Russian forces bombed another facility where civilians were hiding, Yahoo News reported.
Gov. Serhiy Haidai announced Russia’s military destroyed a school, killing at least 62 people.
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After the other building fell, the civilians remaining in the town traveled to the school, where they were hiding in the basement, prior to Sunday’s attack, the governor said.
“Russians dropped a bomb on a school which was sheltering almost the entire village. Everyone who didn’t manage to evacuate. After the village club was hit, the school became the only place of safety, but the Russians took even this possibility away from people,” he said, Yahoo News reported.
Smoke billows from a power and heating plant as it was shelled in Shchastya, in the Luhansk region, eastern Ukraine, Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2022. (AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)
(AP Photo/Vadim Ghirda)
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The rescue operation is still ongoing, the governor said.