Kharkiv (Ukraine), 05/10/2023.- A handout photo made available by the Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Andriy Yermak via telegram shows rescuers working at the site after shelling hit the village of Hroza, Kupiansk district, Kharkiv region, northeastern Ukraine, 05 October 2023, amid the Russian invasion. At least 48 were killed, including a six-year-old child, and six others were injured, including a young girl, after a Russian missile 'hit a civilian object' in the village of Hroza, Kupiansk district, the head of Ukraine's Presidential Office Andriy Yermak wrote on telegram. (Rusia, Ucrania) EFE/EPA/Head of Ukraine's Presidential Office Andriy Yermak HANDOUT -- BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE -- HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES

Brutal Russian attack kills 51 civilians in eastern Ukraine

Moscow/Kiev, Oct 5 (EFE).- A Russian missile attack on Thursday killed 51 civilians in the eastern Ukrainian region of Kharkiv, bordering Donbas.

The tragedy coincided with the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s trip to Spain to ask for more anti-aircraft weapons to defend against enemy bombing.

A local resident looks on at the site of a military strike in the village of Hroza, Kupiansk district, Kharkiv region, northeastern Ukraine, 05 October 2023, amid the Russian invasion. EFE/EPA/YAKIV LYASHENKO

“A clearly brutal crime by Russia, a missile attack on a food store, a totally deliberate act of terrorism,” Zelensky wrote on his Telegram account, along with an image of the aftermath of the attack.

The attack is one of the Russian Army bloodiest on Ukrainian territory since the start of the war in February 2022.

Rocket hits shop and cafe

The missile hit a cafe and a shop in the small town of Groza, where about 60 people were inside, 51 of whom were killed and seven seriously injured, according to Igor Klimenko, Ukraine’s interior minister.

Emergency services have now recovered almost all of the bodies, including a 6-year-old child, from the rubble of the bombed buildings.

According to authorities, at the time of the attack, around 13:24 local time, a large number of people were present in both establishments for a vigil for the death of a neighbor.

The Ukrainian press claims that, according to preliminary data, the attack was carried out with an Iskander cruise missile.

Groza, a town of about 330 people, is located not far from the Ukrainian bastion of Kupiansk, which has been a primary target of the Russian army for several months.

Zelensky Calls for Anti-Aircraft Weapons in Spain

“We have to stop Russian terror,” Zelenskyy added, calling “all those who help Russia evade sanctions” criminals.

“Russia needs this and similar terrorist attacks for only one purpose: to make genocidal aggression the norm around the world,” he added.

Zelensky spoke Thursday in the Spanish city of Granada, where the European political community is meeting, about the need for weapons to defend against enemy attacks on civilian and energy infrastructure during the winter.

The acting head of the Spanish government, Pedro Sánchez, promised more military aid, such as six Hawk missile launchers, new anti-aircraft and anti-drone systems, as well as energy equipment and new demining equipment.

The Ukrainian leader also discussed with his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, the need to strengthen Ukraine’s air defenses, as well as the security of the Odessa region and the Black Sea.EFE