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World Authorities: 3 dead in explosion on bridge linking Russia to Crimea

22:00  08 october  2022
22:00  08 october  2022 Source:   msn.com

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Oct. 8 (UPI) -- Three people died in a huge explosion that severely damaged a strategic bridge linking Russia and the occupied Crimean peninsula, Russian authorities said Saturday.

Investigators survey the damage on the Kerch Strait Bridge on Saturday following an explosion that destroyed parts of the span and killed three people. Image provided by the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation/UPI © UPI Investigators survey the damage on the Kerch Strait Bridge on Saturday following an explosion that destroyed parts of the span and killed three people. Image provided by the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation/UPI

Two spans supporting the roadbed of one lane of the bridge collapsed when a truck exploded on the bridge early Saturday morning, Russia's National Anti-Terrorism Committee told the Interfax news agency.

Truck bomb destroys part of Kerch bridge to Crimea

  Truck bomb destroys part of Kerch bridge to Crimea Truck bomb destroys part of Kerch bridge to CrimeaThe attack appears to be a suicide bombing that happened at around 6 am local time. Security camera footage released on social media shows a truck driving over the bridge from the mainland towards Crimea exploding into a huge ball of flame. Other video and photos posted by people at the scene show an approximately 200m section of road collapsed into the sea and several tankers on the railway that runs parallel to the road on fire.

The explosion caused fuel tankers on a passing freight train to catch fire, igniting a massive blaze that necessitated the halting of automobile traffic across the key bridge, which was opened in 2018 and is seen by Kyiv as a symbol of Russia's illegal annexation of the Crimean peninsula.

The span links the Russian region of Krasnodar to the city of Kerch in Crimea.

Social media images showed sections of the bridge's roadbed submerged in water.

The three people who died are thought to be passengers of a car that was next to the truck when it exploded, the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation said in a statement.

The bodies of two of the victims, a man and a woman, have been recovered from the waters of the Kerch Strait and their identities are being established.

Massive bridge explosion destroys Russian supply route through Ukrainian peninsula Crimea

  Massive bridge explosion destroys Russian supply route through Ukrainian peninsula Crimea Kerch bridge was opened by Putin in 2018 and is crucial for the transportation of Russian military supplies Black smoke billows from a fire on the Kerch bridge that links Crimea to Russia, after a truck exploded, near Kerch, on October 8, 2022.

A criminal case has been opened in the incident, the ICR said.

Ukraine did not claim responsibility for the bridge explosion, but Mykhailo Podolyak, a top adviser to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, wrote in a Twitter post the Crimea bridge explosion is "the beginning.

"Everything illegal must be destroyed, everything stolen must be returned to Ukraine, everything occupied by Russia must be expelled," he wrote.

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense compared the bridge explosion to the sinking of the Moskva missile cruiser in April.

"The guided missile cruiser Moskva and the Kerch Bridge -- two notorious symbols of Russian power in Ukrainian Crimea -- have gone down," defense officials wrote in a tweet. "What's next in line, Russkies?"

The Kerch Bridge is the longest in Europe and was hailed at its opening four years ago by Russian President Vladimir Putin as a symbol of what he called the "restoration of historical justice" represented by the March 2014 annexation of Crimea.

A Bridge Between Crimea And Russia Partially Collapsed After An Explosion And Ukraine President Zelensky Cryptically Called The Weather "Cloudy In Crimea"

  A Bridge Between Crimea And Russia Partially Collapsed After An Explosion And Ukraine President Zelensky Cryptically Called The Weather Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky made a cryptic comment that many took to be commenting on the clouds of smoke and fire from the explosion. View Entire Post ›Three people died, reported the Associated Press. No one has taken responsibility for the attack, although Ukraine has threatened to attack the bridge in the past.

Putin ordered the bridge to be built one month after the annexation, which followed the ouster of pro-Russian Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych.

Also on Saturday, Russia's Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu announced that Army General Sergey Surovikin would be appointed to command the joint group of forces involved in Russia's actions in Ukraine.

"Army General Sergey Surovikin has been appointed to command the joint group of forces in the area of the special military operation in Ukraine based on the Russian defense minister's decision," he said, according to TASS.

Surovikin earlier served as Commander of Russia's Eastern Military District and led Russian troops in Syria.

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