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Ukraine updates: Anger over Kyiv children's hospital strike

Published July 8, 2024last updated July 9, 2024

Dozens have died after Russia launched daytime strikes against cities in Ukraine. A children's hospital was also hit, with anger mounting over Russia again targeting civilian infrastructure. DW has the latest.

Okhmatdyt children's hospital is one of the largest of its kind in Ukraine, with people seen gathering around the hospital building after the Russia strike on July 7
Okhmatdyt children's hospital is one of the largest of its kind in Ukraine Image: Efrem Lukatsky/AP Photo/picture alliance
Skip next section What you need to know

What you need to know

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy vowed retaliation for Russian strikes on Ukraine Monday that killed at least 31 people.

The daytime bombardment during rush hour, and a missile strike hitting a children's medical center in Kyiv, have compounded anger among world leaders.

The strikes come on the eve of a three-day NATO summit in Washington.

Ukraine also said it shot down 11 of 13 Russian Kh-101 cruise missiles — that flew at low altitudes and are harder to detect — launched Monday. 

Here are the latest developments from Russia's war in Ukraine on Monday, July 8:

Skip next section US announces $2 billion defense loan for Poland
July 9, 2024

US announces $2 billion defense loan for Poland

The United States on Monday announced a military loan deal for Poland amounting to $2 billion (€1.85 billion).

The US State Department said that the military financing direct loan was part of a major modernization program that would include buying US defense equipment.

State Department spokesperson said that Warsaw will buy F-35 aircraft, Patriot missile systems and Abrams tanks.

Another $2 billion deal was signed between Washington and Warsaw in September 2023.

Skip next section Kyiv declares day of mourning following deadly Russia strikes
July 8, 2024

Kyiv declares day of mourning following deadly Russia strikes

The Ukrainian government declared July 9 a day of mourning after Russian missile attacks Monday on the capital, Kyiv, and other cities killed dozens.

All flags will be flown at half-mast on municipal buildings throughout the city, Kyiv mayor Vitali Klitschko said in a post on Telegram, adding that entertainment events would also be canceled. 

Russian missiles hit hospital in Kyiv, killing dozens

Skip next section US says NATO to announce 'significant new steps' to strengthen ties with Ukraine
July 8, 2024

US says NATO to announce 'significant new steps' to strengthen ties with Ukraine

White House National Security spokesman John Kirby said at a press briefing that NATO will "announce significant new steps to strengthen its military and political partnership with Ukraine."

Kirby said US President Joe Biden will host an event with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on Thursday and there would be several "big announcements" this week.

NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said during a visit to the Pentagon this morning that the week's focus will be on securing additional defense commitments and trying to get the war in Ukraine to an end.

"At the summit we will make decisions to further strengthen our support for Ukraine, and the Russians understand that they will not be able to wait us out," Stoltenberg said. "They need to sit down and accept a solution where Ukraine remains a sovereign nation."

The leaders of the 32 member countries of the NATO military alliance are set to meet in Washington D.C. for the three-day annual summit beginning Tuesday.

NATO summit celebrates 75 years as it looks to the future

Skip next section US says Putin 'deliberately attacking civilian infrastructure'
July 8, 2024

US says Putin 'deliberately attacking civilian infrastructure'

The US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said "Russia unleashed another savage missile attack on civilians" after Russia launched a wave of strikes against cities across Ukraine.

Decrying the attack on civilians across Ukraine, Miller told reporters that: "These are sites that serve no military purpose. They're not sheltering Ukrainian military assets. They're not sheltering members of the Ukrainian military. These are civilians infrastructure, pure and simple."

"Once again, we've seen Putin deliberately attacking civilian infrastructure as part of his bloody war against Ukraine," he said.

Ukraine needs permission to strike targets in Russia: Yuriy Sak, advisor to Ukraine’s government

Skip next section Germany offers help for children impacted by Russia strike on Kyiv hospital
July 8, 2024

Germany offers help for children impacted by Russia strike on Kyiv hospital

German Health Minister Karl Lauterbach offered help for Ukrainian children impacted by Russia's strike on Okhmatdyt Children's Hospital in Kyiv.

Addressing his Ukrainian counterpart Viktor Lyashko, Lauterbach wrote in a post on X that "we will take in sick children in need at any time, the next rescue flight will take off on Wednesday." 

"[Russian President Vladimir] Putin has once again shown that he is a war criminal by deliberately attacking a children's hospital," he added.

Ukraine's ambassador to Germany, Oleksiy Makeyev, thanked Lauterbach for his "active solidarity and compassionate humanity," also on X.

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz reiterated Germany's unwavering commitment to the Ukrainian people as well, writing: "Germany stands unwaveringly by the side of the Ukrainian people. Especially in these difficult times."

German Ambassador to Ukraine Martin Jaeger wrote earlier this morning after having visited the children's hospital in Kyiv that little children — cancer patients and dialysis patients — were outside with their mothers.

"This is war against civilians," he wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.

Skip next section Ukrainian tennis player Elina Svitolina in tears after Wimbledon win
July 8, 2024

Ukrainian tennis player Elina Svitolina in tears after Wimbledon win

Elina Svitolin struggles to fight tears, wear a black ribbon for the victims of Russia strikes against Ukrainian cities, July 8
Elina Svitolina was through to the qauterfinals but felt the weight of sadness her country was going through in the aftermath of Russia attacksImage: Mosa'ab Elshamy/AP/picture alliance

Ukrainian tennis player Elina Svitolina struggled to fight tears during her on-court interview after her win over Wang Xinyu at Wimbledon. She was through to the quarterfinals.

She wore a black ribbon during the match to commemorate the victims of Russia's strike on Ukraine. "It's a difficult day for Ukrainian people," Svitolina told reporters, before breaking down.

Svitolina, who was born in Odesa, told reporters that she wanted to stay in her room and deal with her emotions.

"When you have these sad days where you don't want to do anything, it was this kind of day for me," Svitolina said.

"It's difficult really to explain, I guess, because for us Ukrainians, it's very close to our heart and a very sensitive topic, very sensitive emotions that we feel every single day," she said.

"But today was one of the days where it was even more difficult because the missile landed on the kids' hospital. Straightaway you see images and everything that happened."


Skip next section UN Security Council to meet over Russia strike on Kyiv children's hospital
July 8, 2024

UN Security Council to meet over Russia strike on Kyiv children's hospital

The United Nations Security Council will meet on Tuesday in the aftermath of a Russia strike that badly damaged a part of the main children's hospital in Kyiv, forcing people to vacate the facility.

"We will call out Russia's cowardly and depraved attack on the hospital," British Ambassador to the UN, Barbara Woodward, said in a post on X.

The meeting will be convened at the request of UK, France, Ecuador, Slovenia and the US. 

Skip next section UK Foreign Secretary David Lammy vows 'iron-clad' support for Ukraine
July 8, 2024

UK Foreign Secretary David Lammy vows 'iron-clad' support for Ukraine

UK Foreign Secretary David Lammy said Russia's strike on Okhmatdyt Children’s Hospital was an "appalling attack."

"Russia's strike on the Okhmatdyt Children’s Hospital in Kyiv is an appalling attack on Ukrainian civilians," he wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter.

"My thoughts are with all the victims and their loved ones. The UK's support to Ukraine is iron-clad," he said, adding: "We must hold those responsible for Putin's illegal war to account."

The attack forced the hospital, which is one of the largest children's facility in Ukraine, to shut down and evacuate.

Some mothers carried their children away on thier backs. Others waited in the courtyard with their children.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said his country will respond to the attack, adding he would also like to hear from allies about a "greater resilience and a strong response" to the assault as NATO leaders prepare to attend an annual summit.

Many people still believed to be under debris of bombed hospital: DW’s Nick Connolly

Skip next section Death toll from Russian strikes climbs to 31
July 8, 2024

Death toll from Russian strikes climbs to 31

Rescuers and volunteers clean up the rubble and search victims after a Russian missile hit the country's main children hospital Okhmatdyt on Monday
One part of the Okhmatdyt children's hospital was severely damaged, other parts of the hospital had their windows blown inImage: Efrem Lukatsky/AP Photo/picture alliance

At least 31 people were killed in Monday's daytime strikes that targeted five Ukrainian cities, with another 154 injured, according to officials cited by news agencies.

The capital Kyiv and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's birthplace Kryvyi Rih were the worst affected.

The Okhmatdyt children's hospital, the largest of its kind in Ukraine, was hit in Kyiv.

Rescuers were deployed to pull out those trapped under the rubble after the roof of one of the hospital's wings collapsed.

Sirens blared out again just hours after the attack, sending people running for shelter, including those who had escaped the first wave of strikes.

Emergency services said that four were killed at a maternity hospital in another part of the city in this repeat strike.

Ukraine's Security Service said it had found parts of a Russian Kh-101 cruise missile at the children's hospital. Kyiv said it would open further proceedings for war crimes charges after the attack.

Skip next section Ukraine and Poland sign security deal
July 8, 2024

Ukraine and Poland sign security deal

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk have signed a bilateral security deal in Warsaw.

The deal paves the way for a plan to allow Poland to shoot down any potential Russian missiles being fired in its direction while they are passing through Ukrainian airspace.

Its signing comes ahead of a three-day NATO summit that begins in Washington on Tuesday.

Zelenskyy called the deal "ambitious" and said, "It is capable of protecting the lives of our people and resisting Russian evil."

"We will also cooperate on combat aircraft," the Ukrainian president added.

"Those who defend Ukraine today are also defending themselves," Tusk said.

The two leaders also held a minute's silence to commemorate those killed by Russian missile strikes on Monday morning.

"There are no words, no documents, no political statements that would suffice to condemn the aggressor," the Polish president said.

Skip next section EU condemns 'ruthless targeting of children'
July 8, 2024

EU condemns 'ruthless targeting of children'

The EU's foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, joined the chorus of condemnation against Russian strikes after a children's hospital was hit in Kyiv on Monday.

"Russia keeps ruthlessly targeting Ukrainian civilians," Borrell said on social media.

"Today's air attacks have killed and wounded dozens, and destroyed Kyiv’s largest children hospital, Okhmatdyt," he added.

"Ukraine needs air defense now. All responsible for Russian war crimes will be held to account."

Skip next section Germany condemns Russian missile strikes
July 8, 2024

Germany condemns Russian missile strikes

The German Foreign Ministry has condemned the "more than 40 Russian rockets" and the "attacks on the Okhmatdyt children's hospital" in a post on X, formerly Twitter.

"This is what willingness for negotiations and the desire for peace look like in [President Vladimir] Putin's Russia," the statement said.

Separately, a spokesperson for the ministry called on Putin to "immediately end this war of aggression against so many innocent people," according to the German news agency DPA.

The spokesperson also condemned the "dramatic" situation that civilians, especially children, are facing now in Ukraine.

Skip next section UN condemns Russian strikes across Ukraine
July 8, 2024

UN condemns Russian strikes across Ukraine

People stand in front of the Okhmatdyt children's hospital in Kyiv
The Okhmatdyt hospital is the biggest children's hospital in UkraineImage: Anna Pshemyska/DW

The UN humanitarian coordinator for Ukraine, Denise Brown, condemned missile strikes that hit a number of Ukrainian cities on Monday, killing dozens of people.

"The week in Ukraine has started with another wave of deadly strikes by the Russian Armed Forces," she said in a statement.

"A children’s hospital in the center of Kyiv has been heavily damaged, the extent of which is not yet known. It is unconscionable that children are killed and injured in this war," she added.

"Under international humanitarian law, hospitals have special protection. Civilians must be protected."

Skip next section Russia says missiles hit military targets
July 8, 2024

Russia says missiles hit military targets

Russia denied Ukrainian allegations that its wave of missile strikes against Ukrainian cities had targeted civilians, in one case hitting a children's hospital.

Referring to the widespread damage caused in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, the Russian Defense Ministry said it could "confirm that the damage was caused by a Ukrainian air defense missile" by using photo and video evidence from the scene.

It also claimed that it had targeted and hit defense industry and military targets.

"The objectives of the strike have been achieved. The assigned objects are hit," the ministry said in a statement.

Skip next section Ukrainian defense minister calls for more air support from allies
July 8, 2024

Ukrainian defense minister calls for more air support from allies

Following the massive wave of Russian strikes against Ukrainian cities on Monday, Kyiv's Defense Minister Rustem Umerov called on the country's Western backers to increase their provision of air support to Ukraine.

"Our defense capabilities are still insufficient... We need more air defense systems," he said in a Telegram post.

His call comes a day before NATO celebrates its 75th anniversary during a three-day summit in Washington. Ukrainian President Vlodymyr Zelenskyy has been invited and Ukraine's defense will likely be high on the agenda.

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