A senior official in the Luhansk region has said that the chances of finding anyone still alive inside the school that was sheltering around 90 people when it was bombed by a Russian aircraft on Saturday afternoon are “very small.”
Serhiy Hayday, head of the Luhansk regional military administration, said the school building was completely destroyed.
“The explosion happened inside the building. Rescuers [are] dismantling the debris as quickly as possible. The chances of finding [anyone still] alive are very small. There were 90 people inside the school building; 27 survived, 60 people most likely died.”
The bodies of two people were found in the debris, Hayday said in a Telegram post Sunday.
A Russian aircraft dropped a bomb on the school in the village of Bilohorivka, which is about seven miles from the frontlines, according to Hayday.
The strike hit at around 4:37 p.m. local time on Saturday, causing fires to break out that took almost four hours to extinguish, he said.
Hayday added that heavy fighting overnight had disrupted the rescue operation.
He said fighting had continued into Sunday on several fronts in Luhansk — including Bilohorivka, Voyevodivka, and Rubizhne. He also said there was an extremely difficult situation around Hirske.
Near Popasna, Russian artillery hit the house where 11 people were hiding in the basement, he said. Rescuers were dismantling the debris.
Hayday said Ukrainian troops had withdrawn a “little way” from Popasna. “Since the city was destroyed, our troops retreated to more fortified positions.”
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