Crimea bridge damaged, two killed, explosions reported

(Reuters) – The Crimean Bridge, a key supply route for Russian forces in Ukraine, was damaged in an incident that killed two people, Russian officials said on Monday, as Ukrainian media reported explosions on the infrastructure. Was given

Traffic was disrupted on this road and rail bridge connecting Crimea annexed by Russia in 2014 and the Russian region of Krasnodar over the Kerch Strait.

The bridge was already damaged by a powerful explosion last October attributed by Russia to Ukrainian security services. Ukraine admitted its indirect involvement in the attack months later.

Sergei Aksionov, the governor of the Russian-established Crimea, announced that a state of “emergency” had occurred at the level of the 145th pillar of the bridge. He did not give details.

The Russian Transport Ministry said the pavement was damaged on the part of the bridge closer to Crimea but the pillars were intact. He did not specify the reason for the loss.

Ukrainian agency RBC-Ukraine reported that explosions were heard on the bridge.

Telegram messaging account “Grey Zone”, affiliated with the Wagner group and strongly followed in Russia, reported two attacks on the bridge during the night at 03:04 (00:04 GMT) and again at 03:20.

The governor of the Belgorod region, Vyacheslav Gladkov, said without giving a cause of death, that a couple in a car on the bridge had died and their daughter was injured.

On Monday morning, there was a several kilometer-long traffic jam as the bridge approached, where police were turning away motorists.

The incident at the bridge spanning the Kerch Strait, which connects the Black Sea to the Sea of ​​Azov, comes as a UN-brokered agreement expires on Monday that allows Ukrainian grain exports through the Black Sea.

(Written by Lydia Kelly in Melbourne, French edition edited by Bertrand Boucy, Nicolas Delame)

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