Explosion of Russian ammunition depot near Ukraine border, 14 injured

An ammunition depot exploded in Belgorod province on the border with Ukraine, local officials said the cause was human error.

“Due to the human factor, an ammunition depot exploded in the Valuysky district. There were 14 people with varying degrees of injuries, all of whom received medical attention. Emergency services have deployed forces to the scene and investigating the cause of the incident,” Vyacheslav Gladkov, governor of Belgorod province in western Russia, wrote on the Telegram app on September 28.

Valuysky District has about 38,000 inhabitants, located 15 km north of the Ukrainian border. The area was shelled after Russian troops withdrew from Kharkov province, northeastern Ukraine, earlier this month.

An ammunition depot exploded in Russia's Belgorod province in August. Photo: AFP.

An ammunition depot exploded in Russia’s Belgorod province in August. Photo: AFP.

A series of ammunition depots in the province of Belgorod have exploded in recent months, and many infrastructures have also been damaged or destroyed by fires. Governor Gladkov said most incidents were caused by human error or hot weather, but also accused Ukrainian forces of ambushing the area.

Belgorod province maintains its terror threat alert at gold until October 7. Moscow has accused Kiev of being behind attacks on Russian border cities such as Belgorod, Bryansk and Kursk.

The Ukrainian government often avoids claiming to be behind explosions on Russian territory, but has repeatedly mocked the carelessness of its soldiers. Lugansk Governor Serhiy Gaidai of the Ukrainian government on September 14 warned that the country’s military could attack Russian territory if necessary.

Location of Belgorod.  Graphics: CNN.

Location of the province of Belgorod. Graphics: CNN.

After more than half a year of conflict, the Ukrainian battlefield has recently changed when Kiev suddenly launched a counterattack in the northeast region and regained control of many territories in Kharkov province. The Institute for the Study of War in the US says Ukraine has liberated about 9,000 square kilometers of territory since late August.

Vu Anh (Theo Interfax, AFP)

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