Newborn killed after Russia airstrike hits maternity hospital in Ukraine

Rescuers are currently working at the site of a maternity ward of a hospital destroyed by a Russian missile attack in Vilniansk, Zaporizhzhia region, Ukraine, on November 23.

The newborn baby who died in a missile strike on a maternity hospital in Vilnyansk in Ukraine’s southeastern Zaporizhzhia region was two days old, said first lady Olena Zelenska.

“RF [Russian Federation] crimes are insane. This night, maternity hospital in Zaporizhzhia region became target. 2 days old boy died…” Zelenska tweeted in English.

Horrible pain. We will never forget and never forgive.“

President Volodymyr Zelensky earlier condemned the attack. “The enemy has once again decided to try to achieve with terror and murder what he wasn’t able to achieve for nine months and won’t be able to achieve,” he said, referring to Russia.

The hospital was hit by an S-300 missile, according to the Ukrainian prosecutor’s office.

“A baby was killed, a woman in labor and a doctor were wounded. Private houses also suffered from the enemy shelling,” the prosecutor’s office said.

The Prosecutor’s General Office of Ukraine has started a pre-trial investigation in criminal proceedings over violation of the laws and customs of war. (Prosecutor’s General Office of Ukraine)

It has started a pre-trial investigation in criminal proceedings over violation of the laws and customs of war, combined with premeditated murder, according to a statement on Telegram.

Some context: The World Health Organization (WHO) has verified some 703 attacks on health care facilities in Ukraine since February, according to its latest data, amid ongoing assaults from Moscow targeting critical civilian infrastructure.

Relentless attacks on the health infrastructure in Ukraine has impacted multiple services, Dr. Jarno Habicht, the World Health Organization’s representative in Ukraine, said on Monday. These include a devastating strike on a maternity and children’s hospital in the southern city of Mariupol in March.

About one in five people in Ukraine has difficulty accessing medicine, according to Habicht. The problem is worse in Ukrainian regions occupied by Russia, with one in three people there not able to get the medicine they need, Habicht added.

It is a problem that will be exacerbated by heavy snowfall during Ukraine’s harsh winter season, which poses a “formidable challenge” to the health system, the WHO official warned.