Traffic normalized, Russia continues investigation following Crimean bridge explosion

The Crimean Bridge, a vital and symbolic infrastructure that connects, at the level of the Kerch Strait, Russia’s east of the peninsula was annexed to the detriment of Ukraine in 2014. It was partially destroyed by a huge explosion on Saturday, October 8 A truck bomb was attributed to Moscow. The explosion caused two rail vehicles to fall into the sea, while the train’s seven tanks on the railway section above caught fire.

Russian divers were to be sent on Sunday, October 9, to inspect the damage to the bridge from the sea. “We have ordered a review by our divers. They will start work at six in the morning”Russian Deputy Prime Minister Marat Kouznullin announced on Saturday evening. “First Results” This underwater experiment during the day.

According to Crimean authorities, car and bus traffic resumed on Saturday on a still uneven route. Ferries are also set up to transport heavy goods vehicles between mainland Russia and the peninsula. Russian news agency TASS reported that rail traffic for passengers and goods was fully resumed from Saturday to Sunday, but with delays.

The head of the peninsula, Sergei Aksyonov, sought reassurance by saying Crimea had a month’s worth of fuel and two months’ worth of food. The Ukrainian region of Kherson may take repairs, according to the Russian occupation official in neighboring Crimea, Kirill Stremoussov. “two months”.

Workers repair the railway section of the Crimean Bridge, Saturday, October 8, 2022.

A snub to Moscow

CCTV footage shared on social media showed a powerful explosion as several vehicles crossed the bridge, including a truck that Russian authorities suspect was the source of the blast. In other scenes, we can see tank cars burning on the railway side of the bridge and two spans of one of the two collapsed roadways.

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According to investigators, three people were killed in the early morning attack: the driver of the truck and two people, a man and a woman, who drove near the explosion and whose bodies were pulled from the water.

Investigators said they had established the identity of the owner of the truck bomb, a resident of the Krasnodar region in southern Russia, and that investigations were ongoing.

The Crimean Bridge, a hugely expensive piece of concrete infrastructure built at the behest of Vladimir Putin, connects the annexed peninsula to Russian territory, making it possible to transport military equipment, particularly to troops fighting in Ukraine. If Kiev was to blame for the explosion and fire, it would be bitter for Moscow that such a vital route and so far from the front could be damaged by Ukrainian forces.

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No Ukrainian claim

In a contradictory tweet on Saturday morning, Ukrainian presidential adviser Myhailo Podoliak later pointed out after appearing to half-heartedly acknowledge the Ukrainian attack. “Russian Song”Argues that the explosion was the result of an internal struggle between the FSB [les services spéciaux] And the Russian Army.

In his evening speech, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky contented himself with mentioning the annexed peninsula: “Unfortunately, it was cloudy in Crimea”Not to mention the explosion.

However, Maria Zakharova, a spokeswoman for Russian diplomacy, thought the reactions at Q showed. “Terrorist nature” Ukrainian authorities. The Russian military, struggling on the Kherson front in southern Ukraine, has assured that its troop supplies are not threatened.

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Ukraine has attacked several bridges in the Kherson region in recent months, disrupting Russian supplies and military bases in Crimea. Vladimir Konstantinov, head of the regional parliament set up by Russia, denounced a coup if Moscow refrained from blaming Ukraine directly. “Ukrainian saboteurs”.

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New Russian command

Russia has always maintained that the bridge is safe despite the fighting in Ukraine, but in the past has threatened Kyiv with retaliation if Ukrainian forces attack this or other infrastructure in Crimea. Russian MP Oleg Morozov, quoted by RIA Novosti agency, demanded an answer on Saturday “enough”. Otherwise such terrorist attacks will increase manifold.he said.

Faced with a Ukrainian military heavily dependent on Western arms supplies, Vladimir Putin in late September ordered the mobilization of hundreds of thousands of reservists and the annexation of four Ukrainian regions, although Moscow only partially controls them. In a sign of discontent at the highest levels over the conduct of operations, Moscow announced on Saturday that it had appointed a new figure as its head. “Special Military Operation” In Ukraine, General Sergey Surovykin, 55 years old.

Fresh explosions hit the southern Ukrainian city of Zaporizhia on Sunday morning, three days after such deadly attacks killed at least seventeen people. The International Energy Agency warned on Saturday that the nuclear power plant, located about 50 kilometers away, has again lost its external power source due to the blasts and is relying on emergency generators.

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The world with AFP

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