The Ukrainian government said Russian artillery was used on a market in the town of Kostiantynivka, killing 16 people at a local market. One of the deaths included a child, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs added that 20 people were injured in what it called a “terrorist attack.”
Video of the incident showed people around the market running for cover after multiple blasts were seen. Government officials said rescue operations of local civilians are continuing.
“Russian terrorists have attacked a regular market, shops, and a pharmacy, killing innocent people. The number of casualties could rise further. Anyone in the world who is still dealing with anything Russian simply ignores this reality,” President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said. “Heinous evil. Brazen wickedness. Utter inhumanity. My condolences to everyone who has lost a loved one. The Russian evil must be defeated as soon as possible.”
The attack came on the same day U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited Ukraine to pledge ongoing U.S. support for the war that began in February 2022. The State Department said Blinken would meet with Zelenskyy and other leaders.
“The Secretary will address Ukraine’s energy, security, and humanitarian needs, and make announcements about how the United States can continue supporting Ukraine in these areas,” the State Department said.
On Tuesday, national security adviser Jake Sullivan said it is monitoring discussions between Russia and North Korea involving North Korea providing weapons to Russia.
“I think it says a lot that Russia is having to turn to a country like North Korea to seek to bolster its defense capacity in a war that had been expected would be over in a week; that in September of 2023, it is going to North Korea to get munitions to try to continue to grind out on the battlefield in Ukraine,” Sullivan said.
Kostiantynivka is a town of about 70,000 people located in the Donetsk region.