‘Fierce fire show’ Putin rocked as oil depot burns in occupied Ukraine after explosion

Huge flames erupt from oil depot in Russian-occupied Donetsk

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Explosions were reported overnight at an oil depot in Makiivka, Donetsk, in eastern Ukraine, where Russian forces had set camp. A huge fire followed the explosion. The fuel depot had been occupied by Russians since 2014.

Reporting on the explosion, Twitter account Ukraine News Live said: “The Armed Forces of Ukraine staged a fierce fire show for the Russians in occupied Makiivka, Donetsk region.

“HIMARS worked on enemy positions. The local oil depot is on fire.”

The explosion was also reported on the official liveuamap website.

Ukrainian troops have been consistently targeting ammunition depots and cargos to slow Russian plans.

This week a huge explosion also rocked the Russian-occupied city of Skadovsk, Kherson Oblast, on the Black Sea.

Ukrainian forces also foiled Russian reconnaissance attempts and destroyed equipment in southern Ukraine.

Operational Command “South” reported that three reconnaissance efforts by Russian forces in Bilohirka and Trudoliubivka in Kherson Oblast were unsuccessful.

In the Kherson region, which is mostly under Russian control, Ukrainian troops had liberated some 50 towns, said Yuri Sobolevsky, deputy head of the ousted Kherson regional council.

He wrote on Telegram: “Russian troop in Kherson region are sustaining considerable losses.”

Ukrainian forces also reportedly killed 32 Russian troops and destroyed a howitzer, a surface-to-air missile system, and four armoured vehicles.

Russia has accused the United States of direct involvement in the Ukraine war, while the first ship carrying Ukrainian grain to world markets since Moscow’s invasion is due to be inspected in Turkey on Wednesday.

Russia’s defence ministry, headed by an ally of President Vladimir Putin, said comments made by Vadym Skibitsky, Ukraine’s deputy head of military intelligence, to Britain’s Telegraph newspaper showed that Washington was entangled in the conflict despite assertions it was limiting its role to arms supplies.

Skibitsky told the paper there was consultation between US and Ukrainian intelligence officials before strikes and Washington had an effective veto on intended targets, but that US officials were not providing direct targeting information.

“All this undeniably proves that Washington, contrary to White House and Pentagon claims, is directly involved in the conflict in Ukraine,” the Russian defence ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.

“It is the Biden administration that is directly responsible for all Kyiv-approved rocket attacks on residential areas and civilian infrastructure in populated areas of Donbas and other regions, which have resulted in mass deaths of civilians.”

There was no immediate reaction from the White House or Pentagon to the ministry’s assertions.

The Pentagon did deny, however, Moscow’s claims that Russia had destroyed six US-made HIMARS missile systems since the start of the Ukraine war. Russia regularly claims it has hit HIMARS but has yet to show proof.

Ukraine and the West accuse Russia of carrying out devastating missile attacks on civilian targets on an almost daily basis. Both sides deny deliberately targeting civilians.

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