A 22-day-old baby, her 12-year-old brother, and their parents were among seven people killed by Russian shells in southern Ukraine on Sunday.
According to Interior Minister Igor Klymenko, bombs hit their family home in the Kherson village of Shyroka Balka.
Another villager and two men from nearby Stanislav were also killed.
“Terrorists must be stopped. They must be stopped by force,” said Mr. Klymenko. “They don’t understand anything else.”
The minister shared photos of the attack’s aftermath on Shyroka Balka, including black columns of smoke rising from buildings and digitally obscured bodies of some of the dead.
Thirteen others were injured in the shelling, he added.
In his daily address, Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky condemned the “brutal” attack in Shyrokа Balka.
“Five people were killed,” he said. “Among them was a baby girl, only 22 days old. Her brother is just 12 years old. The mother, Olesia… only 39, also perished.”
He added that there had been 17 reports of Russian shelling in Kherson alone and many more elsewhere.
“There is no day when Russian evil does not receive our entirely just response,” he said.
“We will not leave any of Russia’s crimes unanswered.”
Kherson was one of four Ukrainian regions claimed by Russian President Vladimir Putin to be annexed last year.
The Ukrainian military reclaimed the western part of the region in November. Russian troops have continued to shell the area from across the Dnipro River.
The shelling came a day after Moscow accused Kyiv of “terrorism” for allegedly attempting a missile strike on the Crimean Bridge, which connects the peninsula to Russia.
Ukraine has not confirmed the attack, though Mr. Zelensky stated that the bridge is a legitimate target because it serves as a military supply route.
Crimea has been under Russian control since Russian forces annexed the peninsula in 2014, a widely condemned move internationally.
In another development, Moscow said it fired warning shots at a cargo ship in the southwestern Black Sea to stop it for an inspection as it made its way to the Ukrainian port of Izmail on the Danube River.
The Russian claim has not been confirmed independently. If confirmed, it would be the first time Russia has fired on merchant shipping outside of Ukraine since exiting a landmark UN-brokered grain deal last month.
Russia claimed that its patrol ship, the Vasily Bykov, fired automatic weapons at the Palau-flagged Sukru Okan when it refused to stop and boarded for an inspection.
Meanwhile, an aide to Mariupol’s exiled mayor reported on Sunday that several Ukrainian civilians were killed as Russian soldiers fought among themselves.
Two teenage girls, four young men, and a woman were among the dead in the “shoot-out” in the village of Urzuf, Petro Andryshchenko said in a Telegram post.
He claimed that the gunfight erupted after an argument between Chechen troops and personnel from the local commandant’s office.
Mariupol, a major port on the Sea of Azov, was taken by Russia last year after months of fierce fighting.
Source: BBC NEWS