Following a Russian missile attack that claimed the lives of at least 20 soldiers, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy pledges the “full truth.”
After a number of troops attending a “award ceremony” not far from the battle line in the southern Zaporizhia area were murdered in a Russian missile attack, Ukraine launched a criminal inquiry.
Local media stated that the incident on Friday in Zarichne had claimed the lives of at least 20 soldiers. Nine people were also hurt in the strike on the village, which is roughly 16 kilometers (10 miles) from the battle line, according to Zaporizhia Governor Yuriy Malashko.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the president of Ukraine, stated in a speech late on Sunday that “this is a tragedy that could have been avoided.”
He went on, “A criminal investigation has been opened into the tragedy,” with the goal being to ascertain the “full truth” about what transpired in order to prevent similar occurrences.
Although they withheld the number of casualties, the Ukrainian Armed Forces revealed on Saturday that a missile attack the previous day had claimed the lives of numerous soldiers from their 128th Mountain Assault Brigade.
The 128th Mountain Assault Brigade men were hit by an Iskander-M missile fired by Russia, the army said, killing the soldiers and injuring locals to varied degrees.
The same day, Ukrainian Defense Minister Rustem Umerov said via social media that he had given the go-ahead for a “full investigation” into the events.
According to Zelenskyy, Umerov had briefed him on the steps taken to make clear the attack’s exact details, including who was involved and what orders were provided.
According to The New York Times, which cited an unnamed military officer who was not authorized to speak to the media, any inquiry would probably concentrate on how Russia learned about the incident and was able to launch an attack on it. According to the official, top brigade members appeared to have violated military norms by hosting the event outside.
One soldier from Ukraine criticized leaders for holding the celebration on social media, claiming that 22 members of the brigade had died.
The purpose of the celebration was to honor Friday’s Artillery Day.
“Heroes died,” everyone seems to be writing. Soldier Ivan Savytskyy stated, “Although it is more appropriate to write ‘Heroes became victims’.”
He claimed, “They fell prey to the worst kind of military rudimentary traditionalism.”
The Russian defense ministry just stated that Russian forces had “inflicted fire” on a unit of Ukraine’s assault brigade in Zaporizhia, killing up to 30 soldiers, in its daily briefings on battlefield developments.
Throughout the course of the 20-month conflict, Russia and Ukraine have frequently overstated the losses they say they have inflicted on one another while underestimating the losses they have suffered themselves.
According to local governor Viktor Mykyta, the 128th assault brigade is stationed in the western Zakarpattia area of Ukraine. On Monday, the region will observe a three-day mourning period.
“Our heroes will always be alive as long as people remember them and their deeds,” he declared.
Zelenskyy has opposed claims that the combat is at a standstill and urged allies to continue their support even as the Israel-Gaza war garners more attention, despite the fact that there doesn’t seem to be much movement along the roughly 1,000 km (620 mile) front line.