Toll from Russia's deadliest airstrike on Ukraine in weeks rises to 18

Aftermath of a Russian missile strike in Chernihiv

KYIV (Reuters) - The death toll from a Russian airstrike on Chernihiv in northern Ukraine has risen to 18, officials said on Thursday, while another 78 were wounded when three missiles slammed into the city centre.

Wednesday's attack, which damaged civilian infrastructure in the northern city, was Russia's deadliest airstrike in weeks and prompted calls from Ukraine's top officials for additional air defence support.

Governor Vyacheslav Chaus said via the Telegram messaging app the search and rescue operation ended on Thursday morning.

Russia denies targeting civilians in the war that is now in its third year.

(Reporting by Anastasiia Malenko; Editing by Alex Richardson)