at least 18 were killed including the Interior Minister

A helicopter crashed this Wednesday morning, January 18, near a school in the Kyiv region, killing 18 people including the Minister of Internal Affairs and three children, a new tragedy in Ukraine days after Russia’s deadly attack on Dnipro.

“Tragedy at Brovary. The number of victims also increased. At 10:30 (0830 GMT), 18 dead including 3 children.”, the region’s governor, Oleksiï Kouleba, said on Telegram. He clarified that“There were also 29 people injured, including 15 children”raised fears of a greater number of victims.

Three officials were among the victims

In the images circulating on social networks, we can see the remains of a helicopter mixed with debris, near a car crushed under the weight of the metal. Firefighters and police are already on the scene.

Among the victims were Interior Minister Denys Monastyrsky, 42, his first deputy Yevgeny Yenine, and Ministry of State Secretary Yuriy Lubkovych, who was on board with six other people, Ukraine’s national police chief said in a press release.

“My colleagues, my friends. What a tragic loss. Sincere condolences to their family”reacted on Twitter to Anton Gerachtchenko, adviser to Denys Monastyrsky.

This former lawyer has been in profession since July 2021. In 2019, he became a member of the Rada, the Ukrainian Parliament, under the label “Servant of the People”, the president’s party.

Soldiers and spectators at the crash site near kyiv on January 18, 2023. | SERGEI SUPINSKY / AFP

The accident occurred in Brovary, a city of about 100,000 people bordering Kyiv’s eastern suburbs. Significant fighting was fought between the Ukrainians and the Russians there as troops from Moscow tried to force a lock on the capital in the first weeks of their invasion.

Such a huge fire

At the time of the tragedy, “kids and employees” from the kindergarten located near the crash site were on site, said Oleksiï Kouleba.

According to footage posted on social media, a large fire broke out after the helicopter crashed, with residential buildings also nearby.

No information about the cause of the tragedy was immediately released.

Previously, Oleksiï Kouleba had stated that “state” of this accident is “in development”.

Picture taken at the helicopter crash site near Kyiv on January 18, 2023. | VALENTYN OGIRENKO / REUTERS

The plane that crashed, an EC-225 manufactured by Eurocopter, belonged to the State Service for Emergency Situations under the Ministry of Internal Affairs, according to a spokesman for the Ukrainian Air Force.

One of the last major accidents of this type in recent years in Ukraine occurred in September 2020 when 26 people were killed in an Antonov-26 crash near Kharkiv (northeast).

New tragedy

This new tragedy comes at the height of the war with Russia, four days after the deadly attack on the Dnipro, in eastern Ukraine.

A Russian missile destroyed a residential building on Saturday, killing at least 45 people including six children, in one of the deadliest bombings since the start of the Russian invasion in February 2022.

Youngest victim 11 months old, complained late Tuesday the deputy head of the Ukrainian presidential cabinet, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, after more than three days of research. Under the rubble, emergency services have removed the injured, but also the lifeless bodies, which were trapped under the enormous concrete.

This new attack on civilian targets has caused great emotion among the Ukrainian population, as the country has been fighting against the Russian invasion for nearly 11 months, often under very difficult conditions.

Moved, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has vowed to bring him to justice “everyone is guilty of these war crimes”pointing directly at the Russian army responsible for this massacre.

Moscow, for its part, categorically denies any involvement in this bloody attack, as in previous episodes.

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