Russian strike on Ukrainian café leaves at least 49 dead as Ukraine’s Zelenskyy visits Spain

A Russian attack on a village in northeast Ukraine Thursday left at least 49 people dead, including a 6-year-old boy, Ukrainian officials said. It also left at least six others injured.

Presidential Chief of Staff Andrii Yermak and Kharkiv Gov. Oleh Syniehubov said Russian forces shelled the village of Hroza in the Kharkiv region, hitting a shop and a café around 1 p.m. Syniehubov said another child was among the wounded.

Russia targeted Ukraine with drones in another major attack early Thursday, striking the southern Odesa, Mykolaiv and Kirovohrad regions. The country’s air defenses intercepted 24 out of 29 Iranian-made drones that were used in the attack, Ukraine’s air force said.

Both attacks came as President Volodymyr Zelenskyy traveled to Spain to rally support from Western allies at a summit of around 50 European leaders.

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Volodymyr Zelenskyy

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy arrives at the Europe Summit in Granada, Spain, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

On Thursday, Zelenskyy attended a summit of the European Political Community in Granada, in southern Spain, to seek additional assistance from the international body. The group was formed in the aftermath of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

“The key for us, especially before winter, is to strengthen air defense, and there is already a basis for new agreements with partners,” he said in a statement on Telegram.

A collapsed building

In this photo provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, emergency workers search the victims of a Russian rocket attack that killed at least 47 people in the village of Hroza near Kharkiv, Ukraine, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023. (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)

Zelenskyy previously said the Granada summit will also focus on “joint work for global food security and protection of freedom of navigation” in the Black Sea, where the Russia’s military frequently targets Ukrainian ports.

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Emergency response officials

In this photo provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, emergency workers search the victims of the deadly Russian rocket attack that killed more than people in the village of Hroza near Kharkiv, Ukraine, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023. (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)

He called for “additional air defense system for Ukraine, additional artillery and shells, additional long-range missiles and drones for our soldiers, as well as additional formats of support and security guarantees for nations threatened by Russia” to help protect Europe from potential aggression by Moscow.

The Ukrainian president also emphasized the need to preserve European unity in the face of a massive Russian disinformation campaign and to remain strong amid a “political storm” in the United States.

Rubble, debris

In this photo provided by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Office, emergency workers search the victims of a Russian rocket attack that killed at least 47 people in the village of Hroza near Kharkiv, Ukraine, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023. (Ukrainian Presidential Press Office via AP)

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He did not say if he expected support from Washington to end, but referenced the confidence he had following his meeting with President Biden and lawmakers in the U.S. last month.

In the past day, Russian attacks left two civilians dead in the southern city of Kherson and another one dead in the city of Krasnohorivka in the eastern Donetsk region. At least eight people were wounded by the Russian shelling, according to Ukraine’s presidential office.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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