KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — A helicopter crash in a Kyiv suburb Wednesday killed 18 people, including Ukraine’s interior minister and three children, Ukrainian authorities said.
Interior Minister Denys Monastyrskyi, his deputy Yevhen Yenin and State Secretary of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Yurii Lubkovych were among those killed, according to Ihor Klymenko, chief of Ukraine’s National Police. Monastyrskyi is the most senior Ukrainian official to have died since the start of the war with Russia almost 11 months ago.
Nine of those killed were aboard the emergency services helicopter that crashed in Brovary, an eastern suburb of the Ukrainian capital, Klymenko said.
Kyiv Regional Governor Oleksii Kuleba said three children were also killed. Earlier, officials and media reports said the helicopter crashed near a kindergarten.
There was no immediate word on whether the crash was an accident or a result of the war with Russia. No fighting has been reported recently in the Kyiv area.
A total of 29 people were injured, including 15 children, the regional governor said.
Ukraine first lady Olena Zelenska daubed teary eyes and pinched her nose in emotion minutes before attending a World Economic Forum session in Davos, Switzerland.
Forum President Borge Brende requested 15 seconds of silence after opening the session to honor the Ukrainian officials killed in the crash.
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