Ukraine was accused of bombing a huge oil depot in Russia on Friday, in the first reported retaliatory airstrike on enemy territory after suffering. Almost continuous bombardment During the 37 days of the war.
Video clips showed a wave of missiles piercing the night sky in Belgorod at around 6 a.m. – then a massive fire broke out in a storage depot in the Russian city about 21 miles from the Ukrainian border.
The governor of the Belgorod region Vyacheslav Gladkov wrote in the Telegram: “The fire in the oil depot arose as a result of an air raid of two helicopters of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, which entered the territory of Russia at a low altitude.”
Ukraine did not immediately acknowledge the accusation – which the Kremlin has warned it could block Peace talks between countrieswhich was scheduled to continue on Friday.
“Of course, this is not something that can be seen as creating comfortable conditions for continuing negotiations,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov was quoted by AFP as saying.
Governor Gladkov initially said two employees were injured, but in an update he said there were “no casualties”. Russian energy giant Rosneft, which also owns the facility, said there were no casualties.
The company and local officials said all workers were quickly evacuated and at least 170 emergency workers were treating the blaze.
The regional governor said that local residents of Belgorod quickly rushed to gas stations, forming huge lines, while insisting that “there are no problems with fuel in the area and never will.”
Russia has reported bombing from Ukraine before, including an incident last week that killed a military chaplain, but not an incursion into its airspace.
Ukrainian authorities did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The strike came after Ukraine’s Defense Ministry posted a video on social media in which it pretended to announce Oscar-style awards for its military successes.
Best picture On videotape of a booby-trapped Russian warship Orsk also brought military supplies to battle, while the best cinematography For “Kiss from the Stinger,” Footage showing the downing of a Russian helicopter.
The alleged air strike on Friday also came as claimed by Ukraine Russian forces were forced to leave The Chernobyl nuclear site is highly polluted.
Ukraine’s state electricity company Energoatom said the withdrawal from Chernobyl came after soldiers received “large doses” of radiation from digging trenches in the woods in the exclusion zone around the closed plant. The International Atomic Energy Agency said it could not independently confirm the allegations of exposure.
Ukrainian forces also recaptured Sloboda and Lukashevka, two villages along a major supply route between the besieged northern city of Chernihiv and the capital, Kyiv, according to Britain’s Ministry of Defense.
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