Powerful explosions rocked the city of Sevastopol in Ukraine’s Russian-occupied Crimea on Aug. 22, with reports of the blasts flooding local Telegram messengers.
The explosions were first reported at about 5.50 p.m. Residents say the blasts were so powerful that their walls were shaking.
At the same time, the Russian invaders claim that air defenses are allegedly operating in Sevastopol and Balaklava.
On social media, users reported blast effects as far away as the town of Inkerman, 10 kilometers to the east of central Sevastopol. There were also reports that the blasts were heard in the village of Ridne, some 20 kilometers east of central Sevastopol.
Social media users reported windows being blown out, windows and curtains shaking, and car alarms being set off by the noise from the explosions.
The blasts are the latest in a wave that has rocked the Russian-occupied Ukrainian territory since Aug. 9.
On that day, several powerful blasts hit a Russian air base near the village of Novofedorivka in the west of Crimea.
U.S. media later reported Ukraine was behind the attack, although Kyiv officially denies responsibility.
The next day, Ukraine’s General Staff announced the destruction of nine Russian planes as a result of the blasts.
Forbes later reported that between eight and 24 Russian aircraft were destroyed by the explosions.
Explosions were heard again in Russian-occupied Crimea a week later, on Aug. 16. In the morning, an ammunition depot exploded near the village of Azovske in the Dzhankoy district, and a fire broke out at an electricity transformer station in Dzhankoy itself.
Later, explosions hit an air base near the Crimean capital city of Simferopol.
In addition, residents of the city of Kerch on the eastern tip of the peninsula heard loud bangs resembling explosions on the evening of Aug. 18. Residents of Sevastopol also reported explosions near the Belbek airfield.
In the following days, explosions were heard in Kerch, Sevastopol, Yevpatoria, Bakhchisarai, and several other cities, including near military facilities and airfields. The occupation authorities assure that the air defense system has been activated and claim to have downed drones.
The blasts in the occupied Crimea have caused panic among Russian tourists and local residents, leading to major traffic jams forming at the approaches to the Crimea bridge, which connects Ukraine’s Russian-occupied Crimea with Russia across the Kerch Strait.
In addition, according to Ukrainian intelligence, the Russians began to urgently evacuate warplanes and military helicopters after the explosions in Crimea.