According to Sergey Aksyonov, a Ukrainian drone hit an ammunition depot in central Crimea on Saturday, July, 22, 2023, sparking an explosion.
Aksyonov, the Kremlin-appointed Head of Crimea, a territory that Moscow illegally annexed from Ukraine in 2014, noted in a post on Telegram that there were no immediate reports of casualties.
However, he added that authorities were evacuating civilians within a five-kilometer (three-radius) of the blast site.
The Ukrainian military seemed to confirm that it had launched the drone strike, claiming through its press service that it had destroyed an oil depot and Russian arms warehouses in the Krasnohvardiiske area. Weapons used were not specified.
Social media posts had earlier referenced unconfirmed reports of “several” drones targeting an oil depot and airstrip, as well as a loud blast resembling the sound of detonating shells.
The explosion in Krasnohvardiiske came less than a week after Russia blamed Ukraine for a strike on the crucial Kerch bridge linking Crimea with Russia, which killed two people and left a section of the roadway dangerously hanging.
Meanwhile, Ukrainian authorities reported that Russian attacks on 11 regions across the country over the previous day killed at least eight civilians and wounded others.
The regional prosecutor’s office in the eastern Donetsk region disclosed that at least four people, including a married couple, were killed as Russian forces on Friday, July 21, 2023, night striked the settlement of Niu-York, south of the city of Bakhmut. Three other Niu-York residents were hospitalized.
Also on Saturday morning, Ukraine’s interior ministry said that two civilians died as Russian forces struck Kostiantynivka, a city in the Donetsk region, on Friday, from multiple rocket launchers.
In a post on its official Telegram channel, the ministry said that another civilian was wounded in the same attack, which also destroyed 20 private homes, cars and a gas pipeline.
Two people were also killed near the northern city of Chernihiv, some 100 kilometers (62 miles) from the Russian border, as Russian cruise missiles destroyed the local cultural center and damaged apartment blocks, the regional military administration reported on Saturday morning.
It did not specify the exact time of the attack, saying only that it took place within the previous 24 hours.
Also, local Governor, Serhiy Lysak divulged that three civilians were wounded as Russian troops shelled a town neighboring the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant,.
Ukraine’s Air Force Intercepts 14 Russian Drones
Furthermore, the Ukrainian air force announced on Saturday morning that it had overnight brought down 14 Russian drones, including five Iranian-made ones, over the country’s southeast, where battles are raging.
In a regular social media update, the air force divulged that all Iranian-made Shahed exploding drones launched by Russian troops during the night were brought down, pointing to Ukraine’s increasing success rate in neutralizing them.
In other development, Governor of Russia’s Belgorod region noted in a statement on Saturday that Ukraine fired cluster munitions at a village near the Ukrainian border on Friday, but that there were no casualties or damage.
“In Belgorod district, 21 artillery shells and three cluster munitions from a multiple-launch rocket system were fired at the village of Zhuravlevka,” Governor Vyacheslav Gladkov said.
There was no immediate comment from Ukrainian authorities.