According to eyewitnesses, a 9-year-old girl, her mother and another woman died after the shelter failed to open during a Russian missile attack in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv on Thursday.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy expressed his disappointment over the accident and said that if local authorities failed to provide protection, they could be prosecuted.
Zelenskyy targeted Kyiv city authorities and Mayor Vitali Klitschko with his statements, New York Post reported.
Police launched an investigation after three people were killed in an attack near a medical clinic in Kyiv in early May. Around 18 airstrikes have been carried out since the beginning of the month.
"Three people, one of them a child, died near the clinic last night," Klitschko said. "A rocket fragment fell near the entrance to the clinic four minutes after the air alert was announced. And people headed for the shelter."
Residents said people were unable to enter the shelter because it was closed. It is not known why the entrances were closed.
Zelenskyy said shelters "must be kept accessible. Never again should we see a repeat of the situation that occurred last night in Kyiv..."
This was "very clearly" the duty of local authorities "and if this duty is not fulfilled at the local level, it is the direct duty of law enforcement bodies to prosecute."
Zelenskyy had earlier told Moldovan journalists that "we also have internal ones" and not just Russians as enemies.
Russia has been targeting Ukraine with airstrikes since February last year, but denies it has committed war crimes.
Ukraine reported no major damage from Thursday's attack, saying it had shot down all 10 missiles.
But, in a statement on International Children's Day, U.N. human rights monitors in Ukraine said 525 children had been killed since the invasion.
Source: New York Post