Ukraine’s Interior Minister, deputy killed in a helicopter crash near Kyiv, says police


Kyiv, Jan. 18: Ukrainian Interior Minister Denys Monastyrsky and several children are among at least 16 people who died in a helicopter crash Wednesday, after the aircraft slammed into a kindergarten in Brovary, an eastern suburb of Kyiv.

"As of this minute, three children died. It is an indescribable pain," Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.

Zelenskyy extended his condolences to the families and friends of those who were lost, calling Monastyrsky and other officials who were aboard the helicopter true patriots of Ukraine.

The cause of the crash is not yet known. Officials say there will be an investigation.

Images from the scene show fiery wreckage near a school building and playground. Officials say children were inside the school at the time of the crash and that many of them are now hospitalized with injuries.

Information about the victims is still emerging, but at least nine people aboard the helicopter were reportedly killed, including the crew. Ukraine's presidential website says the interior ministry's entire leadership died in the tragedy, including first deputy Yevhen Yenin, State Secretary of the MIA Yuri Lubkovych, and their assistants.

The interior ministry oversees law enforcement, the police force, the national guard and state emergency services. According to an official from the president's office, the group had been traveling to one of the country's hot spots.-Agencies


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