On Monday 27 June, at around 3.50pm, a Russian air-launched Kh-22 cruise missile struck a shopping centre in the town of Kremenchuk, Poltava region. Ukrinform reports there were around 1,000 people present in the shopping centre at the time. At the latest count, 18 people were killed, 59 injured, and 36 are still missing.
The building caught fire, and rescuers are still searching through the ash and rubble.
Kremenchuk is a town in central Ukraine. It is consequently removed from the epicentre of the fighting, which is predominantly focused in the east. Nonetheless, missiles are usually equipped with guidance tech, suggesting a targeted strike.
Since 24 February 2022, AOAV has recorded 14 incidents of explosive weapons use targeting commercial premises, which have resulted in 167 civilian casualties (49 killed, 118 injured), and one armed actor fatality. This means that, since 24 February 2022, 99% of casualties when commercial premises have been targeted with explosive weapons in Ukraine have been civilians.
Missiles have caused 71% of civilian casualties when commercial premises have been targeted, and account for 64% of recorded incidents of explosive weapons use on commercial premises.
This latest incident tracks with Russia’s systematic targeting of civilian infrastructure. Since 24 February 2022, explosive violence targeting armed bases has accounted for 3% of explosive weapons use in Ukraine. The majority of incidents have been recorded in urban residential areas and locations where multiple urban locals were affected (28%, 165 incidents respectively). Villages account for 12% (70) of recorded incidents, and commercial premises for 2% (14).
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