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Market Shelling Attack in Russian-Held Donetsk Leaves Dozens Dead

At least 27 people were killed and 20 injured, including two children, in a devastating attack on a busy market in Donetsk on Sunday, January 21. Donetsk is a city in Eastern Ukraine controlled by Russia. The shelling attack occurred in the suburb of Tekstilshchik, where shops and a market are usually bustling with activity.

Credit: Reuters

Denis Pushilin, head of the Moscow-installed authorities in Donetsk, and Alexei Kulemzin, the city’s Russian-installed mayor, accused Ukrainian forces of shelling the area. Pushilin said the attack involved 155mm and 152mm caliber shells fired from Kurakhove and Krasnohorivka to the west of Donetsk.

Images and videos from the scene showed the aftermath, with destroyed shop fronts and bodies in the street.

Market in Donetsk Attacked. Credit: Reuters

Responding to the shelling attack, Russia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement:

“These terrorist attacks by the Kyiv regime clearly demonstrate its lack of political will towards achieving peace and the settlement of this conflict by diplomatic means”.

The Ministry described the incident as a “barbaric terrorist act” by Ukrainian forces, alleging they used Western-supplied weapons.

Kremlin Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov condemned the strike as a “monstrous act of terrorism”, and blamed the Kyiv regime. He accused them of striking civilians and showing their “bestial face.”

Meanwhile, the Tavria unit of the Ukrainian army, operating in the region, denied involvement in the attack, stating they had not engaged in combat operations at that time. A teresely-worded statement from the unit read:

“Donetsk is Ukraine! Russia will have to be held accountable for the lives of Ukrainians taken”.

Donetsk, one of four Ukrainian regions Russia annexed in 2022, has been under partial Russian control since 2014. Although, this annexation was widely condemned as illegal by the international community, the Russian government considers Donetsk to be part of Russia’s sovereign territory, and the region’s citizens as Russians. No confirmation has been made regarding the genuineness of Russia’s claims that Ukraine was behind the devastating market shelling. Local authorities have, however, declared Monday a day of mourning

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