21 killed in Russian missile strikes in Odesa

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21 killed in Russian missile strikes in Odesa

At least 21 people were killed in Russian missile attacks on residential areas near the Ukrainian port of Odesa on Friday, reported DW, quoting news agencies AP, AFP, dpa and Reuters.

The attack came a day after the withdrawal of Moscow's troops from an island in the Black Sea.

The Ukrainian president's office said three Kh-22 missiles fired by warplanes had struck an apartment block and a campsite.

Ukrainian authorities say the attack was revenge for Russian troops being forced from Snake Island, although Moscow has sought to portray their departure as a "goodwill gesture'' to help unblock the exports of grain via the Black Sea.

Russian forces took control of the island in the opening days of the war, apparently hoping to use it as a staging ground to launch an assault on Odesa, which is Ukraine's biggest port and the headquarters of its navy.

"The occupiers cannot win on the battlefield, so they resort to vile killing of civilians," said the head of Ukraine's SBU security service, Ivan Bakanov.

"After the enemy was dislodged from Snake Island, he decided to respond with the cynical shelling of civilian targets.''

21 killed in Russian missile strikes in Odesa

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