A pregnant woman who was pictured being evacuated from a bombed maternity hospital in the Ukrainian city of Mariupol has died along with her baby.
She was rushed to another hospital following the Russian attack last week, the AP news agency reported.
As doctors tried to save her – and realising she was losing her baby – she is said to have cried out: “Kill me now!”
Her hip was crushed and her pelvis detached, surgeon Timur Marin discovered.
The infant was delivered via caesarean section but showed “no signs of life”, the surgeon added.
Focusing on the woman, “more than 30 minutes of resuscitation of the mother didn’t produce results”.
“Both died,” the surgeon said.
Doctors did not have time to get her name before her husband and father came to take away her body.
Medics were pleased she would not be placed in one of the mass graves being dug in the city, AP said.
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Residential block in Kyiv is shelled
Health Secretary Sajid Javid, asked on Sky News if the hospital bombing was a war crime, said: “Yes, I think it is.”
He continued: “It’s an appalling atrocity; it’s a war crime because under international law you cannot attack health facilities, hospitals.”
It is also one of many, he said. “The most recent information I have from the World Health Organisation is they now have documented evidence of at least 31 such attacks on health facilities, hospitals – including shelling, a couple of days ago, of a cancer hospital as well. These are war crimes.”
Following the bombing in Mariupol, Russia denied it had launched strikes on a hospital in the port city. Its ambassador to the UN, and its ambassador in London, said images of the atrocity were “fake news”.
Moscow claimed the building had been taken over by Ukrainian extremists and that no patients or doctors were left inside.
But Mr Javid said the “only fake news is everything we hear from Russia”, adding that a possible prosecution of Russian President Vladimir Putin is already being considered.
“Today the justice secretary (Dominic Raab) will be in The Hague,” he said. “He’ll be meeting there with the chief prosecutor and others to offer Britain’s help to gather the evidence, but also with a future prosecution of President Putin and his team (in mind).”
In other developments
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- Russia says there has been ‘substantial progress’ in peace talks
- Twenty-one children arrive in UK for ‘life-saving’ treatment
- President Zelenskyy to address Council of Europe at 10.30am UK time
- Ukraine’s leader awards medals as he visits wounded personnel
- Britons who take in refugees will get £350 per month ‘thank you’ payment’
Another woman who was in the Mariupol hospital at the time, beauty blogger Mariana Vishegirskaya, said “glasses, frames, windows and walls flew apart” when the attack began.
“We don’t know how it happened. We were in our wards and some had time to cover themselves, some didn’t,” she added.
Ms Vishegirskaya gave birth to a healthy baby girl, Veronika, the day after.
Operating theatres are being powered by emergency generators – in a city which has been without water, heat and food for more than a week.
Nurse Olga Vereshagina said one of the distraught mothers lost some of her toes in the bombing.
“All birthing mothers have lived through so much,” she said.