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Russian airstrike hits hospital, kills 17 people in Ukraine

According to Ukrainian officials, a Russian airstrike on Wednesday, in the besieged port city of Mariupol destroyed a maternity hospital and injured at least 17 people, amid rising warnings from the West that Moscow’s invasion is poised to take a more cruel and indiscriminate turn.

The news: The Mariupol complex was hit by a succession of blasts that blew out windows and ripped away much of the front of one structure, causing the ground to tremble more than a mile distant. 

  • A very pregnant and bleeding woman was carried out on a stretcher by police and troops who hurried to the site to remove victims.

What’s going on: Meanwhile, authorities announced new ceasefires on Wednesday morning to allow thousands of civilians to flee the bombarded towns around Kyiv, including Mariupol, Enerhodar, and Volnovakha in the south, Izyum in the east, and Sumy in the northeast.

  • Although it was unclear whether anyone was able to flee neighbouring cities, people poured out of Kyiv’s outskirts, many heading for the city centre, as explosions rang out throughout the capital and air raid sirens sounded frequently.
  • The evacuees planned to board trains destined for western Ukraine regions that were not under attack from there.
  • Since Putin’s forces entered, tens of thousands of civilians and soldiers are believed to have died. According to the UN, more than 2 million people have fled the country, the largest refugee exodus in Europe since World War II ended.

The crisis is likely to worsen as Moscow’s forces increase their city-bombing campaign in reaction to what appears to be stronger Ukrainian resistance and greater Russian losses than expected.

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