At least 51 killed in Russian strike on Ukrainian village, police says

A Russian attack on a memorial service in a village in northeastern Ukraine on Thursday killed 51 people, Ukrainian officials said.

Large piles of bricks and shattered metal and building materials remained where the cafe and shop were hit early in the afternoon in Hroza village in Kharkiv region.

The attack was the deadliest in the Kharkiv region since Russia’s invasion more than 19 months ago and appeared to be one of the biggest civilian death tolls in any single Russian strike.

Rescue workers carried white body bags in a field next to a children’s playground and loaded them on trucks.

“It’s difficult to talk about this, but we only found bits and pieces, and remains of the bodies. We’re yet to identify the bodies. We’ll use DNA laboratories to identify the bodies. That’s why tomorrow, we’ll talk to the family members and get their DNA samples to create a DNA base. Then, we’ll create DNA profiles and compare,” said Chief Investigative Officer of Kharkiv Region Police Serhii Bolvinov.

“Only after we’re done with conducting all investigations and procedures, including the DNA testing, we’ll be able to say how many people died and who they were,” he added.

President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, who was attending a summit with European leaders in Spain, said that “the Russian terror should be stopped”.

Moscow did not immediately comment on the events in Hroza.