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Russia attack kills family of 5 in Kharkiv, mother holding sons until end

Russian forces continued their bombardment of Ukrainian cities overnight, killing 7 civilians in fires from an oil depot leak Russia sparked in Kharkiv.
Russia attack kills family of 5 in Kharkiv, mother holding sons until end
The aftermath of the Russian attack on Kharkiv. Vyacheslav Madiyevskyy/Ukrinform

On 10 February, a Russian drone strike hit a fuel depot in Kharkiv, spilling fuel that ignited fires across a residential neighborhood and killed seven civilians. Among them was an entire family – parents and their three sons, aged 7 years, 4 years, and 10 months.

“The whole street turned into an infernal molten mass. People in the buildings were held hostage,” said Kharkiv regional police deputy chief Serhiy Bolvinov.

Rescuers found the mother sheltering eldest Oleksiy and the youngest Pavlo in the bathroom. She held the children until the end. The middle son Mykhaylo was with the father, whose body was in the corridor.

“The man probably lost consciousness first, and the little one huddled in the corner, by himself in the kitchen. That’s where we found him,” Bolvinov wrote on Facebook.

Russia attack kills family of 5 in Kharkiv, mother holding sons until end
The kitchen where one of the children died. Photo: Kharkiv regional police deputy chief Serhiy Bolvinov via Facebook.

In another house, a bedridden 66-year-old paralyzed man died with his 65-year-old wife and caretaker. Two other women and a man were injured.

The massive blaze engulfed 15 single-family homes, prompting emergency crews to evacuate 50 residents. Though first responders managed to save 25 other houses from destruction, the fire still ravaged over 3,700 square meters, Kharkiv Mayor Ihor Terekhov reported.

Ukraine’s Air Force reported Russia attacked Ukraine with 31 Shahed-136/131 suicide drones overnight, most targeting Odesa and Kharkiv oblasts. Defense forces intercepted 23. Four people suffered injuries in Odesa Oblast.

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