Ukrainian emergency employees work at a maternity hospital damaged by shelling in Mariupol, Ukraine, Wednesday, March 9, 2022. AP
"The Russian aviation carried out absolutely no missions to hit targets on the ground in the Mariupol area," Russian defence ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said.
"The airstrike that allegedly took place is a completely staged provocation to maintain anti-Russian hype for a Western audience," he said.
The bombing of the maternity hospital resulted in three deaths, including one child, according to the city's mayor. An earlier tally by Ukrainian authorities on Wednesday said 17 people were injured.
Russian President Vladimir Putin sent thousands of troops into Ukraine on February 24th.