Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky on Thursday visited a historic cathedral in the southern port city of Odesa, a few days after it was damaged by a Russian strike, the president's office said.

"Volodymyr Zelensky inspected the destruction in the Transfiguration cathedral caused by the recent massive bombardments of civilian infrastructure and the Odesa historical city centre," his office said in a statement.

"The head of state was informed about the state of the destruction inside the church and its current condition," it said.

Russia has been pounding Odesa, a centuries-old city on the shores of the Black Sea and one of Ukraine's main ports, ever since Moscow withdrew from a grain deal that allowed Kyiv to export its grain despite the war.


The Transfiguration cathedral sits in the historic Odesa city centre, parts of which are on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

The cathedral was originally built in 1794 under Imperial Russian rule.

It was demolished under Soviet leader Josef Stalin in 1936 and rebuilt in the 1990s after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

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