MOSCOW (AFP) – A Moscow-appointed official in Ukraine’s southern Kherson region was killed in an explosion, local authorities said yesterday, the latest in a string of attacks on pro-Kremlin officials in Ukrainian regions under Russian control.
This is the first confirmed death of pro-Russian official in an attack.
“Today, my friend, head of the department of family, youth and sports of the Kherson region, Dmitry Savluchenko, passed away,” the Moscow-appointed deputy head of Kherson region, Kirill Stremousov, said on Telegram. He added that Savluchenko died “as a result of a terrorist act in the city of Kherson”.
The Interfax news agency had earlier reported that the Moscow-installed official died in an explosion after a bomb was planted in his car.
The press service of the city’s civilian and military administration told TASS news agency this was a “targetted assassination”, adding that the official was the only victim in the blast.
An aide to the head of Kherson administration loyal to Kyiv welcomed the attack, which killed a “pro-Russian activist and traitor”. “Our partisans have one more victory,” Sergiy Khlan said on Facebook.
In the early days of Russia’s military intervention, Russia took control of parts of southern Ukraine, including the city of Kherson.
In recent weeks, there has been an increased number of attacks against pro-Kremlin officials in regions that have come under Moscow’s control. On Wednesday, a pro-Russian official in the village of Chornobaivka survived the explosion of a bomb planted in his car.