(Reuters) – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Thursday that Russian forces had “completely destroyed” the Donbass industrial zone and accused Moscow of carrying out senseless bombing as it intensified its offensive.
Zelensky also accused Russian forces of trying to kill as many Ukrainians and inflict as much damage as possible, repeating his accusation that Russia was carrying out genocide.
Zelensky said that while Ukrainian forces were continuing to liberate the Kharkiv region to the east of Kyiv, Russia was trying to apply more pressure in Donbass, which is in the southeastern part of Ukraine.
“It’s hell out there, and that’s not an exaggeration,” he said in a late-night video address, adding that 12 people were killed in a “brutal and absolutely meaningless bombardment” of Severodonetsk on Thursday.
“(There are) continuous strikes on the Odessa region and the cities of central Ukraine. The Donbass region has been completely destroyed,” he said.
“This is a deliberate criminal attempt to kill as many Ukrainians as possible, destroy as many homes, social facilities and businesses as possible.”
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(Reporting by David Leungren and Ronald Bobsky; Editing by Chris Reese and Daniel Wallis)