The Sevastopol Shipyard in Russian-annexed Crimea was on fire early Wednesday after a Ukrainian attack wounded 24 people and setting ablaze two ships ships that were under repair, Russian authorities reported.
The attack against Russia’s Black Sea Fleet headquarters came even as Moscow launched drones against the Odesa region in the Ukraine in the pre-dawn hours. The attacks damaged port and civilian infrastructure in Odesa’s Izmail district and wounded six people, three seriously, Regional Governor Oleh Kiper said.
Ukraine’s air force said it intercepted 32 of 44 Shahed-type drones launched over Ukraine overnight, with most of the them launched toward the southern parts of the Odesa district.
The Sevastopol shipyard attack appeared to one of the biggest in recent weeks, even though the Crimean peninsula, annexed from Ukraine by Russia in 2014, has been a frequent target in the 18-month old war.
Russia’s Defense Ministry said Ukraine launched 10 cruise missiles at the shipyard and three sea drones at Russian ships in the Black Sea. Seven missiles were shot down and all the sea drones have been destroyed, the military said, but some of the missiles damaged two ships that were being repaired in the shipyard.
There was no immediate comment from Ukrainian officials, who almost never acknowledge Kyiv’s responsibility for attacks on Crimea or Russian regions that have become regular in recent months.
Mikhail Razvozhayev, Moscow-appointed governor of the port city of Sevastopol on the Crimean peninsula, said on Telegram on Wednesday that 24 people were injured in the fire. He posted a photo of the fire with smoke billowing over it.
The Sevastopol Shipyard is of strategic importance to Russia as vessels in its Black Sea fleet are being repaired there.