- This latest attack shows that Kyiv is determined to keep making it hard for Russian forces to get what they need. In particular, it is going after Russia's stock of missiles and the routes that they could use to get them into southern Ukraine through Crimea.
- In a separate event, officials in southern Russia said that Ukrainian forces used a drone to shoot at an oil pipeline pumping station north of the Ukrainian border. The governor of the Bryansk region said that nobody was hurt.
Ukraine’s defence ministry says that an explosion in the north of the part of Crimea that Russia took over destroyed Russian missiles that were being moved by train.
The new Russian leader of the city of Dzhankoi said that drones had been used to attack the area.
Ukraine said that there were explosions, but as usual, it didn’t say that it was behind the attack.
If true, it would be a rare time for the Ukrainian military to go into Crimea, which Russia has controlled since 2014.
Russia has been attacked in Crimea before, but most of the time Ukraine hasn’t taken responsibility or said it was some kind of partisan sabotage.
If this strike is confirmed, it shows that the Ukrainian air force now has more drones it can use.
Up until now, it seemed like Ukraine’s missiles couldn’t reach Crimea. But this attack shows that at least a drone can get further behind Russian lines than was thought before.
Ukrainian defence intelligence said that the “mysterious” explosions destroyed Russian Kalibr-NK cruise missiles that were meant for use by Russia’s Black Sea Fleet. In the last few months, Kailbr missiles have been used in many attacks on Ukrainian cities and infrastructure.
Ukrainian TV said that an unconfirmed report from a local resident said that there were “booms” that went on for 30 minutes, leaving part of Dzhankoi without power. The defence ministry said that the blasts “continue Russia’s process of demilitarisation and prepare the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea for deoccupation.”
Russian forces have used Dzhankoi as a hub for trains going between Crimea and other parts of Ukraine that they have taken over. Russian TV said that the strike on Tuesday had not damaged the rail system in any way.
According to the first reports from Russia’s investigation agency, a house and a store were damaged. It said that all of the people killed were civilians.
The Russian-appointed administrator, Ihor Ivin, said that a 33-year-old man was taken to the hospital with shrapnel wounds from a crashed drone. He didn’t say anything about any military targets being hurt.
Local media said that Mr. Ivin said that several buildings caught fire and that the power grid was damaged. Another official who was put in place by Russia said that a drone had been hit over a technical school, between a classroom and a place for students to live.
Sergei Aksyonov, the top Russian official in Crimea, said that air defences near Dzhankoi had been turned on and that the situation was under control. He told the people there not to listen to “fake news spread by Ukrainian propaganda.”
In August, a target was set on a supply of weapons near Dzhankoi. After a few weeks, Russia said that Ukraine was to blame for a drone attack on the Black Sea Fleet in the Crimean port city of Sevastopol that damaged a warship.
This latest attack shows that Kyiv is determined to keep making it hard for Russian forces to get what they need. In particular, it is going after Russia’s stock of missiles and the routes that they could use to get them into southern Ukraine through Crimea.
Natalia Humeniuk, a military spokeswoman, reminded people watching Ukrainian TV that Dzhankoi was a hub station for the occupying force and that it had been clear from the start of the Russians’ full-scale invasion that beating their logistics would be a big part of what would happen to Crimea in the future.
Kyiv also has a political reason to keep Crimea in the news: to remind people that its current goal isn’t just to get Russian forces out of the areas they’ve taken over since February of last year, but also out of the Black Sea peninsula they illegally took over in 2014.
In a separate event, officials in southern Russia said that Ukrainian forces used a drone to shoot at an oil pipeline pumping station north of the Ukrainian border. The governor of the Bryansk region said that nobody was hurt.