The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) on July 23 condemned the Russian missile attack targeting the Ukrainian city of Odessa.
As a result of the missile attack, dozens of historic buildings, including the Transfiguration Cathedral and the Archaeological Museum, were badly damaged.
“This outrageous destruction marks an escalation of violence against Ukraine’s cultural heritage,” said Audrey Azoulay, director general of the organization.
According to UNESCO, a mission from the organization will arrive in Odessa in the coming days to assess the extent of the damage.
The report says the attack contradicts recent statements by the Russian government “regarding the precautions taken to spare Ukraine’s World Heritage sites, including their buffer zones”.
“The intentional destruction of cultural sites may constitute a war crime, as also recognized by the UN Security Council,” the statement said.
As of June 25, Russia has damaged or destroyed more than 664 cultural heritage objects in Ukraine, according to Kateryna Chuyeva, Ukraine’s deputy minister of culture and information policy.
Russian missile attack destroys historic Odessa Cathedral
Russian missile fire at Odessa on the night of July 23 caused significant damage to the city’s historic Transfiguration Cathedral, the Odessa city administration reported via Telegram.