Russia strikes Odesa, destroying a port, grain infrastructure and an abandoned hotel

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KYIV, Ukraine — The missile strike that blew up Russia’s naval headquarters in Crimea last week killed 34 officers, including the navy chief, Ukraine said on Monday, although it did not provide evidence to back it up. to his application.

Ukraine’s Special Operations Forces said on the Telegram messaging app that their strike on the Black Sea Fleet’s main headquarters building in the port city of Sevastopol had injured 105 people. The claims could not be independently verified and are very different from what Russia has reported.

The Russian military announced the attack on the building and at first they said that one serviceman was killed but later they said that the man was not killed but missing. Moscow has not provided further updates.

The Crimean peninsula, which Russia illegally annexed from Ukraine in 2014, has been a frequent target since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered a full-scale invasion of Ukraine 20 months ago . Crimea has been the main center of support for the invasion.

Ukraine has increasingly focused naval resources in Crimea in recent weeks as a crackdown against a summer offensive makes slow gains in eastern and southern Ukraine, the Institute for the Study of War. It followed an attack on Friday with another ban on Saturday.

The new death and injury numbers are a sharp increase from what Ukraine’s intelligence chief, Kyrylo Budanov, told Voice of America on Saturday when he said at least nine people had been killed and 16 others wounded in the attack. the building was left smoldering. He also said that Alexander Romanchuk, the Russian general commander of the main south-eastern front line, was “in serious condition.”

The new report indicates that the commander of the fleet, Admiral Viktor Sokolov, was also killed, although no supporting evidence was provided. He was not named in the statement by the Special Operations Forces, but Anton Gerashchenko, an adviser to the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine posted his name and photo on social media.

Ukraine’s military also offered more details about the attack on Friday. They said the air force carried out 12 strikes on the headquarters of the Black Sea Fleet, targeting areas where personnel, military equipment and weapons were stationed. They said two anti-aircraft missile systems and four Russian artillery units were hit.

The casualty figures were announced as a Russian drone and missile strike near Odesa damaged infrastructure, a grain silo and an abandoned hotel, injuring one person in the Black Sea port city. In the past day, Russian attacks elsewhere in Ukraine killed six civilians and wounded 13, Ukrainian officials said.

Ukraine’s air force said all Russian drones were shot down overnight, but one of 12 Kalibr missiles and two P-800 Oniks cruise missiles appeared to have bypassed air defenses.

Russia has continuously targeted ports and grain storage facilities in Odesa since it withdrew from a wartime deal that allowed grain exports from Ukraine to countries at risk of starvation. The attacks have destroyed silos, warehouses, oil depots and other infrastructure necessary for storage and shipping.

Russia’s Ministry of Defense said long-range missiles and drones were used to secure facilities it said housed foreign soldiers and trained saboteurs. The ministry did not name locations or provide other details to support its claim. He also claimed to have shot down several Ukrainian drones.

The attacks came as independent UN-backed human rights experts said they had found new evidence of war crimes committed by Russian forces and as President Volodymyr Zelenskyy welcomed the arrival of the first Abrams tanks sent by the US that could appear in their slow summer counter-offensive.

The United Nations Independent Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine said it had found evidence of crimes committed by both sides in the war, but far more by the Russians, including torture, some of it fatal, and the rape of women. aged 83. he also faced allegations that Russian forces committed genocide.

Zelenskyy thanked his allies on Telegram for their support in announcing that the tanks were expected to arrive. He did not say how many tanks had arrived, but the US said they were sending 31 tanks.

In other fighting, Russian forces also dropped bombs and launched six heavy artillery strikes on the Kherson region in southern Ukraine, destroying a school and a factory and damaging residential buildings. Three of the deaths reported by the Ukrainian president’s office were in the region: three people were killed and two others were injured by bombs that hit the city of Beryslav. A man was killed in the neighboring village of Lvove.

In eastern Ukraine, the Russians attacked the residential areas of 10 cities and towns in the Donetsk region, killing two people in the town of Zarichne, according to the president’s office.

While fighting in the Zaporizhzhia region of southeastern Ukraine, the Russian army made five airstrikes on Orikhiv, a small town, and the surrounding area.

The Russian Defense Ministry said the air defense shot down three Ukrainian drones over Russia’s Kursk region and three more over the Bryansk region early Monday. They also said that three drones were shot down over the Belgorod region.

Kursk Gov. said. Starovoit said there were no injuries.

A day earlier, a Ukrainian drone damaged the roof of an administrative building in Kursk that some Ukrainian and Russian media said housed the offices of the Federal Security Service, Russia’s main domestic security agency.

Bryansk Gov. said. Alexander Bogomaz that the drones did not cause any casualties, but Ukrainian rockets damaged a farm building and killed cattle.

During the drone attack, Russian authorities delayed or canceled several flights at Moscow airports.

The Ministry of Defense said five more Ukrainian drones were shot down over Crimea and the Black Sea.


Media correspondents Yuras Karmanau in Tallinn, Estonia and Brian Melley in London contributed to this report.


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