Blast damages Crimea bridge, key supply route in Russia’s war in Ukraine

Blast damages Crimea bridge, key supply route in Russia’s war in Ukraine

An explosive caused the partial collapse a bridge linking Crimea Peninsula and Russia on Saturday. This damaged a vital supply artery for the Kremlin’s faltering war efforts in southern Ukraine. Russian authorities claimed that the explosion was caused by a truck bomb and that three people were injured.

Photos posted on social media Saturday showed the Kerch Bridge in flames, which includes sections for automobiles and trains. The railway bridge was set ablaze, and a section from the parallel road bridge fell into the sea.

The bombing came a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin turned 70, dealing him a humiliating blow that could lead him to up the ante in his war on Ukraine. According to CBS News’ Charlie D’Agata, a military analyst called it a “punch in the face” for Putin on his birthday.

Russia Crimean Bridge Accident
A view of smoke rising from the Crimean Bridge, connecting Russian mainland with Crimean peninsula above the Kerch Strait.

Sputnik via AP

The speaker of Crimea’s Kremlin-backed regional parliament immediately accused Ukraine, though the Kremlin didn’t apportion blame. While Ukrainian officials have repeatedly threatened the bridge, some praised the attack but Kyiv did not claim responsibility.

The bridge opened in 2018 and is a tangible symbol of Moscow’s claims on Crimea. It has provided an essential link to the Crimean Peninsula, which Russia annexed from Ukraine in 2014.

The significance of the peninsula is significant for Russia, and it is crucial to Russia’s military operations in the southern part of Ukraine. It would be much more difficult to ferry supplies to the peninsula if the bridge was torn down.


CBS News

Russia’s National Anti-Terrorism Committee said the truck bomb caused seven railway cars carrying fuel to catch fire, resulting in a “partial collapse of two sections of the bridge.” They stated that the explosion and fire caused the collapse of two sections of one link of the automobile bridge while the other was unaffected.

Russia’s Energy Ministry said Crimea has enough fuel for 15 days, adding that it was working on ways to replenish stock.

Authorities suspended passenger train traffic across the bridge until further notice. Putin was made aware of the explosion and ordered the establishment of a government panel to address the crisis.

On the day of the explosion, the Russian Defense Ministry announced that Gen. Sergei Surovkin, the air force chief, would be the commander for all Russian troops fighting in Ukraine. This was the first official appointment for a single commander of the entire Russian force in Ukraine. Surovikin was appointed to oversee the Russian troops in southern Ukraine.

Russian lawmakers called on Putin to declare a “counterterrorism operations” in response. This could be used by Putin to expand the power of security agencies, ban rallies and tighten censorship. It could also be used to restrict travel and expand the partial mobilization that Putin ordered last week.

The speaker of Crimea’s Kremlin supported regional parliament blamed Ukraine for the blast, but downplayed its severity and stated that the bridge would be repaired quickly.

“Now they have something to be proud of: over 23 years of their management, they didn’t manage to build anything worthy of attention in Crimea, but they’ve managed to damage the surface of the Russian bridge,” Vladimir Konstantinov, Chairman of the State Council of the Republic, wrote on Telegram. The parliamentary leader of President Volodymyr Zilenskyy’s party, Saturday, did not claim that Kyiv was responsible for the incident but said it was a result of Moscow’s invasion of Crimea and attempts at integrating the peninsula with the Russian mainland.

“Russian illegal construction is starting to fall apart and catch fire. The reason is simple: If you build something explosive, then sooner than later it will explode,” David Arakhamia (leader of the Servant of the People) wrote on Telegram.

” And this is only the beginning. He said that Russia is not known for reliable construction.

Other Ukrainian officials were happier, but did not claim responsibility. Oleksiy Danilov (secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council) posted a Twitter video showing the Kerch Bridge on fire on one side and Marilyn Monroe singing “Happy Birthday Mr. president” on the other.

A Zelenskyy advisor, Mykhailo Polyak, tweeted: “Crimea is the bridge, the beginning. All illegal items must be destroyed. Everything stolen must be returned Ukraine, and everything occupied Russia must be expelled.

In Moscow, Maria Zakharova, a spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry said that the Kyiv regime’s reaction to the destruction civilian infrastructure showed its terrorist nature. In August, Russia was hit by a series explosions at a Crimean airbase and munitions depot, underscoring its vulnerability.

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