Top Ukrainian Officials, At Least One Child Killed In Helicopter Crash At Nursery

(Photo by Ed Ram/Getty Images)

Dylan Housman Chief Foreign Affairs Correspondent
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Multiple top Ukrainian government officials along with at least one child died Wednesday when a helicopter crashed into a nursery and sparked a fire.

Fourteen people were confirmed dead as of Wednesday afternoon, according to Ukrainian authorities, who revised down an earlier count of sixteen dead and three children. Among them is Denys Monastyrskyi, the country’s interior minister.

The Super Puma helicopter carrying Monastyrskyi and several members of his Interior Ministry staff crashed in Bovary, a suburb of Kyiv. All nine passengers on board died along with at least seven more on the ground. Dozens more, including children, suffered burn wounds according to Reuters.

The crash set fire to a nursery that was filled with children, incinerating an entire side of the building, according to reports.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the total death toll had not yet been clarified. “The pain is unspeakable,” he said. Officials declared it too early to determine exactly what caused the crash.

“We saw wounded people, we saw children. There was a lot of fog here, everything was strewn all around. We could hear screams, we ran towards them,” a witness on the ground told Reuters. “We took the children and passed them over the fence, away from the nursery as it was on fire, especially the second floor.” (RELATED: Russia Reportedly Offers Citizenship To Foreigners Who Join War Against Ukraine)

National police chief Ihor Klymenko confirmed Deputy Interior Minister Yevheniy Yenin was among the dead.