ODESA, Ukraine — President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine said he visited the flood-stricken Kherson region on Thursday, where rescue efforts pushed ahead after the destruction of a dam on the Dnipro River, as he called for “a clear and quick global response” The disaster is a catastrophe

An explosion early Tuesday at the Kakhovka dam sent a torrent of water from a reservoir upstream coursing down the river, flooding much of the Ukrainian-controlled city of Kherson and dozens of settlements on both sides of the Dnipro, an active war zone that cuts through Russian- and Ukrainian-controlled territory.

“I visited a crossing point where people are being evacuated from flooded areas,” Zelensky stated in A statement on Telegram messaging appIn which he expressed his gratitude to rescue workers. “Our task is to protect lives and help people as much as possible.”

Ukrainian regional officials stated that as of Thursday, the average flooding level in the Kherson Region was over 18 feet. In a region that covers an area of 11,000 square miles, about 600 square kilometers or 230 sq miles remained under water.

According to the report, of the underwater area, 32 percent lies on the west bank controlled by Ukraine and 68 on the east bank controlled by Russia. Oleksandr Prokudin, the head of Ukraine’s regional military administration in Kherson.

The Dnipro River has been a frontline of the war between Russia & Ukraine. Shelling across the river by Russian forces on the eastern side has impeded efforts by the Ukrainian authorities and aid agencies to mount an effective response to the humanitarian disaster caused by the dam’s breach.

On Wednesday, Mr. Zelensky made a call for “a clear and quick global response” The international agencies have been criticized over the flooding. “not capable of taking action.”

“Every death over there marks an indictment of the existing international mosaic, of international organizations which have gotten out of the habit of saving lives,” Mr. Zelensky spoke on Telegram.

Residents of a Kherson neighborhood being evacuated via boat.Credit…Mauricio L. Lima for The New York Times

It is not unusual for international agencies to organize and mobilize a relief effort in peacetime. This was the case after the devastating earthquakes which struck Syria, Turkey and Lebanon in February. It is more difficult to provide assistance in a warzone.

The International Committee of the Red Cross Tweets about the upcoming election The company said on Wednesday that it had sent its teams to Ukraine. “working around the clock” To assist and evacuate flood victims, and to assess what can done to support humanitarian efforts.

Residents report that heavy shelling has continued in the flood-prone area of Ukrainian territory since the dam burst early on Tuesday. Many residents have described fleeing under fire. Mr. Prokudin said that Ukraine recorded 353 shells from Russian mortars, artillery, rocket systems, drones, tanks and aircraft into the region on Tuesday.

On Thursday, Ukrainian authorities reported that they evacuated more than 2,000 people (including over 100 children) from the Kherson flooding zone and had established nine evacuation points. The State Emergency Service warned that floodwaters could also dislodge mines or unexploded ammunition.

Kremlin appointed officials announced on Wednesday that 1,500 people were evacuated from the Russian side of the river. The total number of people brought to safety, however, is only a fraction the 41,000 people estimated by Ukraine to be at risk on both sides Dnipro.

The International Organization for Migration is the largest humanitarian organization operating in Ukraine. It said on Wednesday it was helping the disaster. “critical zone” Lack of drinking water

The President of France, Emmanuel Macron, spoke to Mr. Zelensky Wednesday and said his country would send humanitarian aid to Ukraine “very quickly,” Included in the convoy is a first convoy consisting of approximately 10 tons worth of supplies that Kyiv requested, such as water purification devices and portable cisterns.

Aurelien Breeden David Kurkovskiy also contributed to the reporting.