11 civilians found dead in Ukraine as Russians retreat

Published October 1, 2022
Cars destroyed by a Russian missile strike, that hit a convoy of civilian vehicles amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, are seen in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine September 30, 2022.— Reuters
Cars destroyed by a Russian missile strike, that hit a convoy of civilian vehicles amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, are seen in Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine September 30, 2022.— Reuters

KYRYLIVKA (Ukraine): Eleven civilians met violent deaths on an exposed section of road as Russian forces retreated from the outskirts of a town in north-eastern Ukraine, eyewitnesses said on Friday.

The Ukrainian troops who found the group of destroyed civilian cars with dead and in some cases burned bodies, said they believed Russian troops had attacked a civilian convoy in Kupiansk.

The bodies remained where they died and around the six vehicles and the road from the village of Kyrylivka, in the Kharkiv region, is still exposed to artillery fire.

“The vehicles were moving all together as a civilian convoy. We can see that there is almost no distance between the vehicles,” said a Ukrainian soldier who guided reporters to the scene.

“And obviously they were attacked by gunfire because you can see the bullet holes... One car was set on fire and it’s impossible to recognise the people without an expert.” Russia’s February invasion left its forces in command of a swathe of northern and eastern Ukraine, but this month a lightning counter-offensive in the Kharkiv region has driven them back.

The Russians attempted to secure a new frontline on the Oskil river in the east of the region, but Ukrainian armour has now crossed the river and — while shelling is ongoing — the retreat continues.

Published in Dawn, October 1st, 2022

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