At least 30 people were killed and more than 100 wounded in a rocket attack on a railway station in Kramatorsk in eastern Ukraine, according to the state railway company.
Ukrainian officials accused Russia of Friday’s attack, saying it took place as civilians were at the station in an attempt to evacuate to safer parts of the country.
Russia, however, denied any involvement.
“Two rockets hit Kramatorsk railway station,” Ukrainian Railways said in a statement. It later added: “According to operational data, more than 30 people were killed and more than 100 were wounded in the rocket attack on Kramatorsk railway station.”
Oleksandr Kamyshin, head of the railway company, called it “a deliberate attack on the passenger infrastructure of the railway and the residents of Kramatorsk”.
AFP news agency said its journalists on the scene saw at least 20 bodies of people grouped and lying under plastic sheets next to the station. Blood was pooling on the ground and packed bags were strewn outside the building in the immediate aftermath of the attack, it reported.
The journalists said four cars next to the station had been destroyed and the remains of a large rocket with the words “for our children” in Russian were lying adjacent to the main building. Bodies were later seen being loaded onto a military truck.
Russia did not immediately comment on the reports of the attack and the casualty toll. Moscow has denied targeting civilians since launching a “special operation” in Ukraine on Feb. 24.
Ukrainian officials say Russian forces have been regrouping for a new offensive, and that Moscow has focused on the the eastern part of Ukraine known as Donbass bordering Russia.
Local Ukrainian authorities in some areas have been urging civilians to leave.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky described Russia as an “evil with no limits” after the attack.
“They are cynically destroying the civilian population. This is an evil that has no limits. And if it is not punished, it will never stop,” Zelensky claimed in a statement on social media.