Ukrainian Drone Strike Forces Shutdown of Major Russian Refinery

Written by Henrik Rothen

May.20 - 2024 10:30 AM CET

A Ukrainian drone attack has brought operations at a significant oil refinery in Russia’s southern Krasnodar region to a standstill.

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In the early hours of Sunday, a swarm of drones targeted the Slavyansk-on-Kuban refinery, one of the largest in southern Russia.

According to Moscow Times, Roman Siniagovski, a regional official, confirmed the incident on Telegram, stating,

“During the night, six drones fell on the territory of the refinery in Slavyansk-on-Kuban.”

The attack forced the refinery to halt its operations, with the head of security, Eduard Trutnev, explaining to the Interfax news agency, "There have been strikes. The plant is currently at a standstill. We are assessing the damage."

Strategic Attacks on Russian Energy and Military Sites

Ukraine has intensified its attacks on Russian soil in recent weeks, particularly targeting energy infrastructure.

A Ukrainian defense source revealed that their forces had also aimed at the Kushchyovsky military airfield, marking the second drone strike on these locations within three weeks.

"Several aircraft were hit at the airfield, and the refinery complex was hit," the source detailed.

These strikes are part of Ukraine's broader strategy to disrupt Russian operations as the conflict continues into its third year. Energy sites, like the Slavyansk-on-Kuban refinery, are crucial targets in this campaign, aiming to cripple the logistical and operational capabilities of Russian forces.

In addition to the refinery strike, Russian air defenses were busy over the weekend.

The Russian defense ministry reported intercepting 57 Ukrainian drones on Saturday night, including nine ATACMS tactical missiles and one drone over Crimea, a region annexed by Russia in 2014.

Furthermore, Ukrainian forces launched air attacks on Russia's Belgorod region on Sunday, as confirmed by regional governor Vyacheslav Gladkov. These frequent drone strikes signify a shift in Ukrainian tactics, leveraging unmanned aerial technology to apply pressure on multiple fronts.

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