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Russia is accusing Ukraine of blowing up the Kakhovka dam as “revenge” for a failed offensive. The act of sabotage may lead to “very serious consequences,” Kremlin spokesman Peskov has warned.
The dam was partially destroyed early on Tuesday morning, sending a surge of water downstream and flooding towns and villages along the path of the Dnieper River. Over 1300 people were evacuated after the dam failed.
Ukrainian forces have sabotaged the Kakhovka hydroelectric dam in Russia’s Kherson Region in a bid to deprive Crimea of drinking water and distract from Kyiv’s faltering counteroffensive, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov claimed on Tuesday according to a report by RT.
“We are talking about a deliberate sabotage by the Ukrainian side,” Peskov told reporters according to The New York Times. “This sabotage could potentially lead to very serious consequences for several tens of thousands of inhabitants of the region, environmental consequences, and consequences of a different nature, which have yet to be established.”
Experts said a deliberate explosion inside the dam, which has been under Russian control since early in the war, most likely caused the massive structure of steel-reinforced concrete to crumble. Moscow blamed Ukraine, calling the blast an act of sabotage, but did not elaborate on how it might have been done. Mr. Zelensky said Russian forces had blown up the dam to “use the flood as a weapon.”
“This sabotage is also connected with the fact that, having launched large-scale offensive operations two days ago, the Ukrainian armed forces are not achieving their goals,” Peskov continued. Russia’s Defense Ministry has said it repelled several large-scale attacks in the southern sector of the front in recent days. These “offensive actions are choking,” Peskov stated. –RT
Ukrainian officials have also said that in addition to the humanitarian crisis, the flooding would cause a widespread ecological disaster. Mr. Zelensky said an oil slick of “at least 150 tons” was being washed out to the Black Sea and that untold chemicals, fertilizers, and oil products in the flood regions would end up in the rivers and the sea.
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With the dam destroyed, the level of the Dnieper has fallen further upstream, including at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant. Ukrainian troops made several attempts to cross the river to recapture the plant from Russian forces last year, and lowering the water level would remove a major obstacle to future attempts. Additionally, the nuclear power plant depends on water from the Dnieper to cool its reactors and its spent fuel rods.
Article cross-posted from SHTF Plan.