2-year-old boy and baby among 7 killed as Russia hits Odesa apartment block

Sunday, March 3, 2024

A mother and baby were among the seven people killed in an overnight Russian drone attack on the Ukrainian city of Odesa, officials said, the latest civilian victims of a relentless Russian bombing campaign.

The dead woman's sister told CNN that the mother's name was Anna, and that she was in her bedroom on the second floor of her apartment building when the strike happened. She was a florist and a decorator. Her husband and daughter survived the drone attack, her sister told CNN.

A two-year-old boy, who officials said was named Timofii, was discovered under rubble on a ground floor after the strike, Odesa City Municipality said on Telegram. He was killed the day before his third birthday, Oleh Kiper, the head of Odesa region military administration, said in a TV interview.

Earlier in the day, Oleh Kiper, the head of Odesa region military administration said that authorities were looking for up to 12 people, four of whom are children.

The attack left the front facade of an apartment block in ruins.

Andriy Kostin, Prosecutor General of Ukraine noted that there is no military facility nearby, calling the attack a deliberate targeting of civilians.

Sunday has been declared a day of mourning in Odesa, according to the city's administration.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said the attack showed the need to further strengthen the country's air defense capacities.

"One of the enemy drones hit a residential building in Odesa. 18 apartments have been destroyed," Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Saturday.

"More air defense systems, more missiles for air defense is what saves lives," he said.

Ukraine has been asking its western allies for more military aid as Russia's war against Ukraine enters its third year.

Last week, Zelensky warned CNN that "millions" could die if US lawmakers don't approve President Joe Biden's $60 billion aid request for Kyiv, hours after announcing some 31,000 Ukrainian soldiers have been killed so far in the conflict.

Republican leadership in the House has so far been refusing to hold a vote on providing more funding.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon is weighing whether to tap into the last remaining source of funding it has for military aid to support Ukraine's war effort against Russia even without guarantees that those funds will be replenished by Congress, multiple defense officials told CNN.

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