Kiev denounces Russian shelling during rescue efforts in Kherson

Zelenski visits Kherson to coordinate rescue efforts after floods from the Kakhovka Dam

photo_camera PHOTO/ALEXEY KONOVALOV/TASS/HANDOUT via REUTERS - The Nova Kakhovka Dam

Ukrainian President Volodymir Zelensky visits Kherson on Thursday following the Russian army's attack on the Kakhovka dam and a hydroelectric power plant on the Dnipro River that has flooded several settlements and isolated thousands of Ukrainians.

Zelensky also went to Mikolayiv, where the authorities today reported the death of one person as a result of the flooding. "We have visited the main pumping station of the Inhulets River management channel, which is flooded due to the destruction of the dam of the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Power Plant," Zelensky wrote on his Telegram account on Thursday.

The president noted that several localities have been evacuated in Mikolayiv province, where authorities, he said, are working to rescue more people and are offering them drinking water and food.

A 53-year-old man has died in the village of Vasilivka in the southern Ukrainian region as a result of the floods, the provincial police said on Thursday.

According to the competent authorities, the torrent of water caused by the overflowing of the dam has flooded more than 3,000 hectares of forest land in Mykolayiv

Ukraine denounces Russian shelling in the midst of rescue efforts

Ukrainian presidential office adviser Mikhail Podolyak today denounced Russian forces shelling the town of Kherson and other areas on the banks of the Dnieper in the midst of rescue work by Ukrainian emergency teams trying to save flood victims.

"Right now, Russia is shelling the flooded Kherson and other flooded coastal areas, preventing rescue teams from evacuating the population," Podolyak wrote on his Twitter account, where he posted a video showing people boarding a boat while explosions can be heard nearby.

Podolyak also accused Russia of "not even trying to evacuate people in the occupied territories". "People are sitting on rooftops without food or water, exposed to the sun and shelling," the Ukrainian presidential aide added.

The destruction early Tuesday morning of a dam on the Dnieper River in the Russian-occupied part of Kherson province has caused flooding in which several people have died and thousands of residents have been evacuated.

The Dnieper River splits Kherson oblast in two. The eastern bank is occupied by Russia, while the western bank is under the control of the Kiev government.

Ukraine accuses Russia of intentionally blowing up the dam to stop a possible Ukrainian advance. Russia denies this and points the finger at Kiev.

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