NAfter explosions at a Russian airbase in Crimea, local authorities have declared a state of emergency. The neighboring bathing resort of Novofedorivka was to be evacuated and the gas supply to two towns was to be cut off.
On Tuesday, several powerful explosions occurred simultaneously on the base’s premises. According to the Russian occupying forces in Crimea, one person was killed. At least 14 people were injured.
Videos later released from the scene show charred vehicles and a burned-out bomber. The Ukrainian Air Force announced on Wednesday that at least ten planes were destroyed.
“Crimea is Ukrainian”
So far there have only been hints from the Ukrainian side, but no official confirmation of a possible attack. So far, Ukraine had not shelled any targets in Crimea, annexed by Russia in 2014. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in a video address on Tuesday evening: “Crimea is Ukrainian and we will never give it up.”
The Russian Ministry of Defense announced shortly after the incident that the cause was fire safety violations. Margarita Simonyan, the editor-in-chief of the Russian foreign broadcaster RT, wrote on Twitter that it was probably sabotage.
The American Institute for the Study of War suspects that the Russian leadership does not want to admit a Ukrainian attack with rockets or cruise missiles, as this would reveal the weakness of its own air defenses. Moscow had already spoken of an accident after the sinking of the flagship of the Russian Black Sea fleet in April.
According to Ukrainian sources, 13 civilians were killed in Russian airstrikes in the eastern Ukrainian region of Dnipropetrovsk. “It was a terrible night,” Governor Valentin Resnichenko wrote on Telegram on Wednesday. Twelve of the fatalities were counted in the village of Marhanets, which is across the Dnipro River from the nuclear power plant in Zaporizhia. The foreign ministers of the G-7 states called on Moscow on Wednesday to immediately return the nuclear power plant to full control of Ukraine.
According to Slovakian sources, Russian oil was again flowing through the Ukraine to Europe on Wednesday afternoon through the southern strand of the Druzhba pipeline. The Russian pipeline monopolist Transneft had previously announced that it would resume oil supplies to Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. The Slovakian company Slovnaft and the parent company MOL from Hungary had previously offered to pay the transit fees for the pipeline section through Ukraine.