Nine Dead In Airstrike On Military Base Near Lviv
Russian airstrikes killed 35 people at a military base outside Ukraine’s western city of Lviv, the regional governor said Sunday, updating the toll from nine previously.
“I have to announce that, unfortunately, we have lost more heroes: 35 people died as a result of the shelling of the International Peacekeeping and Security Centre,” the governor of Lviv region Maxim Kozitsky wrote on Telegram.
Some of the injured have been taken to Lviv hospitals, he said.
READ ALSO: Russian Troops Abduct Ukrainian Mayor
The military base in Yavoriv, located some 40 kilometres (25 miles) northwest of the city, was a training centre for Ukrainian forces with foreign instructors, including from the United States and Canada.
It was also a hub for joint exercises of Ukrainian soldiers with NATO allies.
Ukrainian Defence Minister Oleksiy Reznikov said “foreign instructors work here,” although it was unclear whether any were present during the attacks.
Foreign troops left Ukraine shortly before Russia launched an invasion of its pro-Western neighbour on February 24.
The United States said on February 12 that it withdrew 150 of its instructors from Ukraine.
Reznikov condemned the bombardment as a “new terrorist attack on peace & security near the EU-NATO border”, calling for the imposition of a no-fly zone.
“Action must be taken to stop this. Close the sky!” he wrote.
According to preliminary information, around 30 cruise missiles were fired from Russian planes located over the Black Sea, which had flown out from the southern Russian city of Saratov, Lviv’s mayor said.
Ukraine’s Air Force Command West said on Facebook two cruise missiles were destroyed by air defence systems.
They said the missiles were fired “probably from the waters of the Sea of Azov or the Black Sea”.
Washington on Saturday authorised $200 million in additional military equipment for Ukraine.
Russia the same day warned that its troops could target supplies of Western weapons to Ukraine.
Many Ukrainians have fled to relative safety in Lviv since the launch of Russia’s invasion.
A short drive from EU member Poland, the city is also a transit hub for those leaving Ukraine.
Separately, the mayor of Ivano-Frankivsk in western Ukraine said the city’s airport was targeted in a strike.
“Our morning in Frankivsk began with explosions. This is already the third strike on Frankivsk. They hit the airport,” mayor Ruslan Martsinkiv said on Facebook.