Satellite images show the destruction of a Mariupol theater that had ‘CHILDREN’ written outside — before and after it was bombed by Russia

  • Russian forces bombed a theater in the besieged city of Mariupol, Ukraine, on Wednesday.
  • More than 1,000 civilians were sheltering at the theater, Ukrainian officials said.
  • Before and after satellite images of the theater show the extent of the damages.

New satellite images showed the damage inflicted by Russian forces after the Wednesday bombing of a theater in Mariupol, Ukraine, where more than 1,000 civilians were sheltering, according to Ukrainian officials.

City council officials accused Russia of “purposefully and cynically” destroying the Mariupol Drama Theater and attacking women, children, and the elderly who were hiding in a bomb shelter on site.

Satellite images taken prior to the bombing showed the world “CHILDREN” had been written in Russian on the ground at the front and back of the theater, possibly in an attempt to alert Russian forces of who was inside.

Ukrainian officials said the theater suffered severe damage from the attack, but that some survivors had already emerged as of Thursday.

Lyudmyla Denisova, Ukrainian parliament’s commissioner for human rights, said on Friday 130 people had been rescued from the theater but that 1,300 people still remained trapped. The actual numbers of casualties and fatalities are not yet known.

The new satellite images, obtained by Insider on Saturday, show the extent of the damage, with most of the building’s roof completely gone.

Mariupol, a port city in southeastern Ukraine, has been devastated by the Russian invasion. The city of roughly half a million people has been bombarded and surrounded by Russian forces, leaving residents without food, water, or electricity.