Blasts Hit Base In Crimea; 6 Power Pylons In Russia Destroyed
Moscow denounced sabotage and Ukraine hinted at responsibility for new explosions on Tuesday at a military base in the Russian-annexed Crimea that is an important supply line for Russia's invasion of Ukraine, Natalia Zinets reported for Reuters.
Photo Insert: Perevalne military base
The blasts engulfed an ammunition depot at a Russian military base in the north of the peninsula, disrupting trains and forcing the evacuation of 2,000 people from a nearby village, according to Russian officials and news agencies.
Plumes of smoke were later seen at a second Russian military base in central Crimea, Russia's Kommersant newspaper said.
In Tuesday's incident, an electricity substation also caught fire, according to footage on Russian state TV. Russia's RIA news agency said seven trains were delayed and that rail traffic on part of the line in northern Crimea had been suspended.
Paul Byrne reported for the Associated Press on August 17, 2022 that Russia’s Tass news agency quoted the FSB security agency as saying Ukrainian operatives blew up six high-voltage transmission towers earlier this month in Russia’s Kursk region, close to Ukraine.
The towers distribute electricity from a nuclear power generating plant to businesses, military camps, and nearby towns and cities.
Ukraine stopped short of publicly claiming responsibility for any of the blasts, including those that destroyed nine Russian planes at another Crimean air base last week.
Russia seized the Crimean Peninsula in 2014 and has used it to launch attacks against Ukraine in the war that began nearly six months ago. If Ukrainian forces were behind the explosions in Crimea, that would represent a significant escalation in the war.
Such attacks could also indicate that Ukrainian operatives are able to penetrate deeply into Russian-occupied territory, supplementing attempts to weaken Moscow’s forces on the front lines.