In a devastating blow against all that is decent and humane, Ukraine’s largest children’s hospital, Okhmatdyt, suffered significant damage amid the ongoing war with Russia. The deliberate attack, which occurred late last night, has sparked international outrage and highlighted the escalating humanitarian crisis in the region. At least 36 people were killed, many of them children. One hundred thirty-seven others were injured at last count. 

The Attack

Reports indicate that the hospital, located in Kyiv, was hit by a daring daylight series of missile strikes. Eyewitnesses described the harrowing scenes as explosions rocked the facility, shattering windows and causing structural damage to several wings of the hospital. Medical staff, patients, and their families scrambled to safety as debris rained down around them. It has been reported that the surgeries were in progress at the time of the attack. 

Immediate Impact

The immediate aftermath of the attack saw a frantic effort to evacuate the hospital. Medical staff displayed extraordinary bravery, working tirelessly to move critically ill children and newborns to safety. Despite their efforts, preliminary reports suggest that several patients and staff members sustained injuries, some of which are serious. The extent of the damage to medical equipment and infrastructure is still being assessed, but it is clear that the hospital’s operations will be severely hampered for the foreseeable future.

International Response

The international community has almost unanimously condemned the attack. United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres issued a statement denouncing targeting medical facilities as a violation of international humanitarian law. He said:

“The deliberate attack on a children’s hospital is a heinous act that cannot be justified. We call for an immediate cessation of hostilities and the protection of civilian infrastructure.”

Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have also weighed in, calling for independent investigations into the incident. The European Union and the United States have reiterated their support for Ukraine, promising to provide additional humanitarian aid and medical supplies to help address the crisis.