According to Donetsk police, the death toll could rise as there may be people under the rubble. Rescue teams are searching the area using search dogs and explosives experts.
“Peaceful people died and lay under the rubble,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky wrote after the Russian attack. This is the reality of our country’s daily life, the President said.
The attack in Donetsk comes as the first anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine approaches.
“[Os russos] Live in code, we believe they are preparing something for February 24,” Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said in an interview with French television on Wednesday.
“They may try a major attack on two fronts… We need weapons to fight the enemy,” he said. “The enemy cannot be underestimated… mobilization has not stopped,” the minister added.
According to Reznikov, Kiev believes Moscow has sent about half a million troops — far more than the 300,000 troops Russia announced recently when it last mobilized.
Last week, NATO countries approved sending more than 100 battle tanks to Ukraine. A decision that Russia has already warned would be a move that crosses a dangerous line into the conflict.
Zelensky is now working to gather political support for fighter jets and long-range artillery.
The Kremlin said on Wednesday that providing long-range weapons to Ukraine would not change Russia’s military objectives or its strategy on the battlefield.
“It will require more effort on our part. But again, it will not change the course of events,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters.