Interior Minister Denys Monastyrskyi, his deputy Yevhen Yenin and Interior Ministry Secretary Yurii Lubkovych were among the dead, according to Ihor Klymenko, head of the National Police of Ukraine.
Monastyrskyi, who was in charge of Ukraine’s police and other emergency services, is the highest-ranking Ukrainian official to have died since the war with Russia began nearly 11 months ago.
Nine of the dead were aboard the emergency services helicopter that crashed in Brovary, an eastern suburb of the Ukrainian capital, Klymenko said.
Kyiv regional governor Oleksii Kuleba said three children were also killed. Earlier, officials and media reports said the helicopter crashed near a kindergarten.
A total of 29 people were injured, including 15 children, the regional governor said.
“For now, we are considering all possible versions of the helicopter crash,” Ukraine’s prosecutor Andriy Kostin told Telegram.
The investigation is being conducted by Ukraine’s security service, he said.
Ukraine’s first lady, Olena Zelenska, watered her eyes and pinched her nose in emotion minutes before attending a World Economic Forum session in Davos, Switzerland.
“Another very sad day today – new losses,” she said.
Forum chairman Borge Brende asked for 15 seconds of silence after the session opened in honor of the Ukrainian officials killed in the crash.
The crash came just four days after a Russian missile strike on an apartment building in southeastern Ukraine killed 45 civilians, including six children – the deadliest attack on civilians since the spring.
“I have not had time to recover from one tragedy, there is already another,” said the deputy head of the Ukrainian presidential office Kyrylo Tymoshenko.
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