Children and high-ranking officials have been killed in a helicopter crash near a kindergarten in Ukraine
Kyiv, Ukraine – Ukraine’s Interior Minister was among at least 15 dead in a helicopter crash near a kindergarten outside the capital Kyiv, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said on Wednesday, calling it a “horrible tragedy”. He said at least three children were among the dead.
Video of the immediate aftermath showed a large fire as screams were heard from the scene. There was no immediate information as to what caused the crash or whether it was believed to be accidental or related Russia’s ongoing war against Ukraine.
Local officials previously put the death toll at 18, and Zelenskyi made it clear that the death toll is still being confirmed.
The Associated Press quoted Ihor Klymenko, head of Ukraine’s national police, as saying that Interior Minister Denys Monastyrskyi, his deputy Yevhen Yenin and Interior Ministry Assistant Secretary Yurii Lubkovych were among the dead.
According to the AP, nine of those killed were on board the rescue helicopter.
President Zelenskyy said in a statement released on social media that the crash caused him “unspeakable” pain.
“I ordered the Security Service of Ukraine to find out all the circumstances of what happened in cooperation with the National Police of Ukraine and other authorized bodies,” he said on his messaging app Telegram feed. “From that moment, 3 children have died.”
Monastyrsky, a 42-year-old father of two, was appointed Home Secretary in 2021. He is the highest-ranking Ukrainian official who has since lost his life Eleven months ago, Russia invaded Ukraineaccording to the news service Reuters.
22 people were hospitalized, including 10 children.
Officials said children and staff were in the nursery at the time of the crash.
Paramedics and police were working at the scene in the town of Brovary, about 12 miles northeast of Kyiv.
Russian and Ukrainian forces fought for control of Brovary during the initial stages of the Moscow invasion until Russian troops withdrew in early April.
Russian President Vladimir Putin deployed troops to pro-western Ukraine on February 24 last year.
The crash followed a tragedy that left at least 45 people dead, including six children, at a Russian home Rocket hit an apartment building in the eastern city of Dnipro over the weekend.
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ukraine-helicopter-crash-near-kindergarten-kids-top-minister-among-dead/ Children and high-ranking officials have been killed in a helicopter crash near a kindergarten in Ukraine