Ukrainian soldiers killed as Russian missiles hit military awards ceremony

The soldiers from the assault brigade had gathered in the frontline village to honour the day of Missile Forces, sources said.

Ukrainian soldiers killed as Russian missiles hit military awards ceremony
FILE PHOTO: Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskiy visits a frontline, amid Russia's attack on Ukraine, in Zaporizhzhia region, Ukraine August 15, 2023. Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY.IMAGE BLURRED AT SOURCE./File Photo
The frontline near Zaporizhzhia has been visited by the president many times (Picture: REUTERS)

More than 20 Ukrainian soldiers have died after Russian missiles struck a military awards ceremony held in a frontline city in eastern Ukraine.

Twenty-eight members of the 128th Mountain Assault Brigade are reported to have died when the Iskander-M missiles hit the awards ceremony in the Zaporizhzhia region, as more than 50 soldiers and civilians remain injured.

Ukrainian MP Aleksey Kucherenko announced on Facebook that 28 people had been killed and more than 53 were wounded, though the official number has not yet been released.

The soldiers from the assault brigade had gathered in the frontline village to honour the day of Missile Forces, sources said.

Ruslan Kaganets, commander of the Solnyshko volunteer battalion, said: ‘They were lined up when the Russians launched an attack, resulting in many casualties among the officers and soldiers.’

President Volodymyr Zelensky announced a criminal investigation will be conducted into the soldier’s deaths.

He said: ‘This is a tragedy that could have been avoided. What’s most important is to establish the full truth about what happened and prevent such incidents in the future.’

Meanwhile, Zakarpattia state administration Viktor Mykyta has asked locals to refrain from any entertainment events, concerts, and more as the region grieves.

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The missiles which are thought to have been used in the attack are nuclear capable and have already been deployed to neighbouring Belarus.

They’re capable of carrying nuclear warheads, have a range of more than 300 miles and can reach speeds of an astounding 5,320 mph.

Iskander missiles weigh in at four tonnes and measure 23 feet long – and are launched from a vehicle with a three man crew.

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