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Russia Accuses Kyiv of Striking Bridge Linking Crimea to Mainland Ukraine

A bridge damaged in Thursday's attack. Vladimir Saldo / Telegram

Russian-installed authorities in occupied Ukraine accused Kyiv of striking a bridge linking the annexed Crimean peninsula to mainland Ukraine early Thursday.

“The criminal Kyiv regime barbarically shelled civilian bridges on the administrative border between the Kherson region and Crimea near Chonhar,” Kherson’s Kremlin-installed leader Vladimir Saldo said, without specifying the number of bridges targeted in the attack.

A number of bridges connect Crimea to southern Ukraine’s partially occupied Kherson region via the smaller Chonhar peninsula.

					The Chonhar Peninsula in the southern Kherson region, where Thursday's strike took place.
The Chonhar Peninsula in the southern Kherson region, where Thursday's strike took place.

Photos posted by Saldo on the Telegram messaging app showed a gaping hole on the surface of a bridge.

He claimed the attack was carried out by British-supplied Storm Shadow missiles.

No injuries were reported in the strike.

Another Moscow-backed official in occupied Ukraine, Vladimir Rogov, claimed the Chonhar bridge was struck alongside an older, unused bridge.

However, Crimea’s Russian-installed Governor Sergei Aksyonov said only one bridge was damaged.

Ukrainian authorities have not responded to the accusations, which could not be independently verified. 

Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu warned Tuesday that Ukrainian forces were planning to strike Crimea using Storm Shadows or U.S.-supplied HIMARS missiles.

Shoigu promised swift retaliation in the event that Western weapons were used to attack the territory annexed by Moscow in 2014.

The Kremlin previously blamed Kyiv for an October 2022 explosion on the Crimean bridge, which links the peninsula to mainland Russia.

Ukraine has denied involvement in the attack.

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