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Silence and hope in the midst of darkness and pain. The aftermath of a rocket attack in Dnipro in the photos of Yevhen Zavhorodnyi

On the night after the tragedy, during the rubble removal, equipment was turned off, and rescuers paused to hear the voices of people under the rubble. A house in Dnipro destroyed by a Russian X-22 missile. January 14, 2023. Photo by Yevhen Zavhorodnyi

On January 14, 2023, the Russian army fired missiles at Dnipro. The missile hit a residential building at 15:30, when many people were at home. The attack destroyed two entrances of the apartment building - 72 apartments were destroyed and more than 230 were damaged. Forty-six people were killed, including six children. 11 people are still missing. Three days of mourning have been declared in Dnipro.

Today, the Ukrainian Association of Professional Photographers publishes photos by Yevhen Zavgorodnyi taken at the scene of the tragedy in Dnipro.

Saving lives

On January 14, 2023, during another massive Russian army attack on Ukraine, a Russian missile hit a residential building in Dnipro. Two entrances of the nine-story building, which was home to more than 1,100 people, collapsed.

According to the Prosecutor General's Office, the Russian military launched an X-22 cruise missile. Such missiles are extremely inaccurate, but massive enough to cause numerous casualties. The rescuers worked non-stop for several days. On January 14, at 13:00, the search and rescue operation was completed.

The rescue operation lasted 69 hours. They managed to rescue 39 people, including 6 children. Initially, 9 deaths were reported, but over time, this number increased to 46. The missile strike killed 40 adults and six children. The youngest child was eleven months old.

Rescuers from the State Emergency Service worked at the scene for several days. According to official reports, a missile strike on a house in Dnipro killed 46 people, including three children, and wounded 75 (including 13 children). January 14, 2023. Photo by Yevhen Zavhorodniy

On January 14, 2022, Yevhen Zavhorodnii was photographing a child's complicated surgery in a Kyiv hospital. The photographer recalls that the operating room door had a special vacuum system and closed with a loud sound like a thud. When the air raid started, these sounds were very disturbing. "I was filming a Ukrainian doctor in Kyiv saving the life of a two-year-old child. During the alert, every second I expected a loud explosion to sound. Fortunately, there were no explosions and the operation went well," says Yevhen Zavhorodniy. He adds that after filming the saving of a life, he went to take pictures of how the Russian Federation takes lives.

Rescuers pull people out of the rubble. January 15, 2023. Photo by Yevhen Zavhorodnyi

Every life is important

Immediately after the operation, Yevhen went home, left his belongings and headed to Dnipro. "On the way to the scene in Dnipro, it seemed that the city continued to live in its usual rhythm. The scene of the tragedy opened suddenly," says Zavhorodniy. He remembers most of all the moment when the rescuers declared complete silence. This is done in order to hear and find people under the rubble. "There was absolute silence for five minutes. The rescuers turned off all the generators and machines, and it became very quiet and dark at once. It was a very powerful moment," says the photographer.

There was absolute silence for five minutes. January 14, 2023. Photo by Yevhen Zavhorodnyi

The rescue operation lasted 69 hours. On January 19, 2023, the deaths of 46 people were announced. January 15, 2023. Photo by Yevhen Zavhorodnii

Yevhen Zavhorodnii says that people were very united - they helped each other, brought clothes, and cooked food. "What was happening near the destroyed building in Dnipro reminded me of the atmosphere of the Maidan. We could hear them all the time: "Who needs broth, hot broth. Tea, coffee. Guys, take sandwiches". People were as united and friendly as possible. I don't know what kind of idiot you have to be to wage war on our people," says Yevhen Zavhorodniy.

Rescuers with sniffer dogs at the scene of the terrorist attack in Dnipro. January 14-15, 2023. Photo by Yevhen Zavhorodnyi

A rescued cat and its owner. January 15, 2023. Photo by Yevhen Zavhorodnyi

He recalls an episode with a cat that got stuck on a ledge between floors and rescuers tried to remove it. The frightened animal could not move and then fell down. "The cat fell, but remained intact. He ran into the stairwell, where a rescuer caught him and handed him over to his owner," - says Yevhen.


Photographer Yevhen Zavhorodniy has been shooting for about 20 years for both Ukrainian media and foreign agencies. He began by documenting the events of the Orange Revolution in 2004. His photos have been published by The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Guardian, Deutsche Welle and others. Prior to the full-scale invasion, he had been photographing the Ukrainian parliament for a couple of years. Since the beginning of the invasion, he has been documenting the consequences of Russian aggression. Yevhen's works have been exhibited at collective exhibitions in Ukraine and the EU.

The photographer's social networks:

As a reminder, the Ukrainian Association of Professional Photographers has launched a series of materials dedicated to the key events of the Russian war against Ukraine, where it publishes memoirs and photographs of Ukrainian documentary photographers.

The project is being implemented thanks to the support of ЗМІN.


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