Zelensky visits wounded soldiers as Russia strikes port cities

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visited injured soldiers on Sunday as Russia carried out missile strikes on the Black Sea port cities of Odessa and Mykolaiv. Photo courtesy of Volodymyr Zelensky/Facebook

April 3 (UPI) — Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visited injured soldiers on Sunday as Russia carried out missile strikes on the Black Sea port cities of Odessa and Mykolaiv.

“Our border guards bravely and selflessly defend our state’s borders,” Zelensky said in a Facebook post with images of wounded soldiers in battles in Kharkiv, Chernihiv and Gostomel. “Get well soon, guys! »

Lyudmila Denisova, Ukraine’s human rights commissioner, said in a statement to Telegram on Sunday that Russian forces had carried out airstrikes on critical infrastructure in Odessa and Mykolaiv. She added that Russian forces destroyed an oil refinery in Kremenchuk on Saturday.

“Yesterday, the occupiers fired heavily on the Kremenchuk refinery and the surrounding fuel and lubricant depots. The company’s infrastructure was destroyed. It is not functioning. Several people were injured and burned,” said she declared.

The Russian Defense Ministry confirmed the rocket attacks in a video message posted on Facebook and said fuel storage facilities used to supply Ukrainian troops had been destroyed along with an aircraft parking lot at a nearby airfield. .

“The armed forces of the Russian Federation continued to strike at Ukraine’s military infrastructure,” the Russian Defense Ministry said.

Vitaliy Kim, the governor of the Mykolaiv region, said in a statement to Telegram that 14 people were taken to a local hospital after the shelling of the city, one of whom died from his injuries.

Denisova added in her statement that the number of people killed in a rocket attack on a regional administration building in Mykolaiv on Tuesday rose to 38 victims.

The airstrikes came after the Ukrainian Defense Ministry accused Russian forces of executing civilians in the Ukrainian town of Bucha, sparking international outrage.

“The Ukrainian town of Bucha has been in the hands of animals for several weeks,” the defense ministry said. “Local civilians were arbitrarily executed, some with their hands tied behind their backs, their bodies strewn across the city streets.”

Denisova alleged on Sunday that Russian forces also opened fire on civilians in Kakhovka who had gathered to protest the invasion. Demonstrators had also gathered in the occupied city of Kherson.

“During the peaceful action in Kakhovka, the Russian army opened fire on the townspeople, who came out to say ‘no’ to the invaders,” Denisova said. “Explosions of grenades and machine guns are heard in the city. There are detainees and wounded.”

The Russian Defense Ministry denied killing Bucha civilians in a statement to Telegram on Sunday and called images and videos showing corpses on the streets “false”.

“Given the troops left the city on March 30, where were these images for four days?” said the Russian Defense Ministry. “The bodies in the video appear to have been deliberately placed in order to create a more dramatic image.”

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