December 9, 2023

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Russian official: A drone caused a fire in the Crimean oil tank

KIEV, Ukraine (AP) – A massive fire broke out in an oil tank in Crimea after it was hit by a drone, a Russian-appointed official there said Saturday.

Mikhail Razvogayev, the Moscow-appointed governor of the port city of Sevastopol on the Black Sea peninsula, posted videos and photos of the fire on his Telegram channel.

Razovugayev said the fire was ranked highest in terms of the complexity of extinguishing it.

He did not say whether the drone that caused the fire was Ukrainian. Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, a move most of the world considered illegal. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that his country seeks to regain the peninsula during the current full-scale Russian invasion.

The incident comes a day after Russia launched more than 20 cruise missiles and two drones into Ukraine, killing at least 23 people.. Almost all of the victims died when two missiles hit a residential building. Among the dead were three children.

Razovugayev said that the oil tank fire did not result in casualties and would not impede the fuel supply in Sevastopol.

The city has been regularly attacked by drones, especially in recent weeks.

Earlier this week, Razvogayev reported that the Russian military destroyed a Ukrainian drone that tried to attack the port and another exploded, shattering windows in several apartment buildings, but causing no other damage.

Ukrainian officials did not immediately comment on the oil tank fire. After previous attacks on Crimea, Kiev usually stopped short of publicly claiming responsibility, but asserted that the country had the right to strike any target in response to Russian aggression.

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