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Ukraine: Russian attacks on Kyiv and cities across the country are an attempt to 'spread terror'

A view of total devastation after a playground was hit by several explosions in the Shevchenkivskyi district of Kyiv
A view of the a playground after several explosions rocked the Shevchenkivskyi district of Kyiv © Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Reacting to Russia's mass strikes carried out on Kyiv and several other Ukrainian cities, Agnès Callamard, Amnesty International’s Secretary General, said: 

“This is yet another day of petrifying news from Ukraine, with Russia launching multiple strikes that hit residential areas, city centres and civilian infrastructure.

“The crater left by a Russian missile in the middle of children’s playground in central Kyiv is a stark symbol of the complete disregard for human life that has characterised Russia’s invasion. 

“The ultimate goal of today’s attacks is to spread terror among the entire civilian population. 

“Russia must immediately stop its war of aggression. All those responsible for the aggression and war crimes - including commanders and civilian leaders such as ministers and heads of state - should be held criminally responsible for their actions.”


Massive Missile strikes

In the early hours of today (10 October), Russian forces carried out massive missile strikes on Kyiv and several other Ukrainian cities including Dnipro, Zaporizhzhya and Zhytomyr. According to the Ukrainian Armed Forces, around 40 rockets fired by Russian forces hit targets in Ukraine.

Critical infrastructure facilities including power plants and power substations in eight regions across the country seem to be the main targets of the attacks. The consequences of these strikes have led to mass power shortages across the country and many train delays. According to Ukraine’s national police, of the 117 buildings damaged throughout the country, 29 were critical infrastructure facilities, four were multi-storey buildings and 35 were private residences.

While Kyiv was one of the first targets at the start of the of the full-scale invasion by Russia, this is the first time its historic centre has been hit. Four Kyiv city districts came under attacks that damaged buildings and structures including the Kyiv National Shevchenko University, a pedestrian bridge and a playground in Shevchenko Park.

According to the State Service of Emergency Situations, today’s attacks killed 11 people and injured 89 across the country.  

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin welcomed the attacks, claiming them to be targeting “energy facilities, military administration and communications of Ukraine”. 

Accountability for war crimes  

Since the beginning of the conflict, Amnesty has documented Russian war crimes and other violations of international human rights and humanitarian law committed during Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine. All of Amnesty’s outputs published to date – including news updates, reports, briefings and investigations – can be found here  

Amnesty has repeatedly called for members of Russian forces and officials responsible for the aggression and violations to be held to account and has welcomed the ongoing International Criminal Court investigation in Ukraine.

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