On Thursday, two S-300 missiles were fired at the center of the city of Kramatorsk, landing about a minute apart and less than a hundred meters from a CNN team.
An earlier Iskander missile strike had killed four people and hospitalized several more in the same area — an entirely residential zone with shops, a hospital and a clinic. One of those killed was a well-respected school principal, Hanna Valeriivna, weeks before her 48th birthday.
Rescue crews still at the scene had no warning of Thursday’s attack. CNN witnessed the second missile’s last moments in flight before a large fire erupted and smoke billowed into the air.
There were no further fatalities, though at least five civilians were injured. Some people ran in panic from the scene; others seemed fatalistic. “Of course, we are frightened,” said Natalia, a middle-aged woman cowering in a doorway. “But what option do we have?”
The military governor in Donetsk, Pavlo Kyrylenko, says there is one option: Leave. “The occupiers will not leave Donetsk region alone until we drive them out of our land. Until then, all civilians must evacuate the region — it is a matter of life and death.”