Ukraine’s Defense Ministry says Russian cruise missiles destroyed in Crimea attack

(CNN) — Ukraine’s Defense Ministry said Monday night An attack is destroyed Russian “Kalibre” cruise missiles are transported by train in the town of Zhankoy in Russian-occupied Crimea.

Ukrainian officials did not claim direct responsibility for the attack, but said it helped “further militarize Russia and oust the Crimean peninsula.”

Sergei Askionov, the Russian-appointed head of the annexed peninsula, confirmed the attack and activated the region’s air defense system. One person was injured and two buildings were damaged, Askionov said.

An amateur video uploaded by CNN shows a large explosion and the resulting fireball. A man is heard saying off camera that the attack hit the train station. However, the video does not clearly show what was attacked and CNN has not confirmed the location of the attack.

A screenshot of a video showing an explosion in the town of Zhankoy in Russian-occupied Crimea. (Credit: @Gerashchenko_en via Twitter)

Russia’s two most important military airfields in Crimea are located at Zhankoy and Kvardeyskoy, Britain’s Ministry of Defense reported in 2022.

“Zhankoy is a key road and rail junction that plays an important role in supplying Russia’s operations in southern Ukraine,” it said.

Crimea also has a major port for the Russian Black Sea Fleet in the city of Sevastopol and a major naval base. of some Russia’s most important warships Surface ships, including those equipped with cruise missiles, are stationed there.

The United States has previously accused Russia of using cruise missiles in the Black Sea to attack civilian targets in Ukraine.

Annexation of Crimea

From Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2021 Multiple attacks Against actions his military says have destroyed Russian positions in Crimea and Russian Kalibr cruise missiles.

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Ukrainian officials, including President Volodymyr Zelensky, have repeatedly vowed to liberate the Crimean peninsula, annexed by Moscow in 2014. Zelensky has previously insisted that Crimea is “just a territory” for Ukrainians but “a part of our people”. Society”.

The attack followed Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Crimea on Saturday to mark the ninth anniversary of his annexation. The visit, which also included a stop in Russian-occupied Mariupol, came days after the International Criminal Court indicted the Russian president for war crimes in Ukraine.

Officials in Moscow have been formally charged by the ICC after launching an unprovoked attack on Ukraine last year. He Kremlin rated The ICC proceedings were “shocking and unacceptable”.

The attack came as Putin hosted Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Moscow Kremlin. During a meeting on Monday, Xi told Putin that China and Russia have “common goals” and expressed support for Putin’s re-election. The Ukraine war was raised early in their meeting and is expected to be a key discussion during Xi’s three-day visit.

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