Ukraine free to strike enemy positions in Crimea, says defense minister Reznikov

17 August, 06:11 PM
Ukraine agreed only not to strike targets on Russian soil with Western-supplied weapons (Photo:Reuters)

Ukraine agreed only not to strike targets on Russian soil with Western-supplied weapons (Photo:Reuters)

Ukraine feels free to target any Russian military facilities in occupied Crimea, Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said in an interview with U.S. broadcaster Voice of America on Aug. 16.

He noted that Ukraine has an agreement with the United States not to use the Western weapons it has been provided with to strike Russian territory.

However, this does not apply to territories temporarily occupied by Russia – including Ukraine’s Russian-occupied Crimea. Russia invaded Crimea in 2014 and then claimed to have annexed it, but this claim has only been recognized by a handful of rogue and pariah states.

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Reznikov also expressed the hope that the United States would make a political decision to provide Ukraine with ATACMS rockets, which have a range of 300 kilometers. This is enough to hit targets in all of the Russian-occupied parts of Ukraine – even the bridge Russian built in Ukraine’s Crimea between the occupied peninsula and Russia at the Kerch Strait.

Since the beginning of August, a series of blasts have been heard at Russian military facilities in the occupied Crimea. Ukraine has not officially declared its involvement in them. However, Western media, citing unnamed Ukrainian officials, reported that the explosions were the result of the work of an elite Ukrainian unit.

Several explosions rang out at a military air base near the village of Novofedorivka on Aug. 9, as a result of which, according to various estimates, around a dozen Russian warplanes were destroyed.

Explosions w'ere heard again in Russian-occupied Crimea on Aug. 16. In the morning, an ammunition depot exploded near the village of Azovske in 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 Simferopol.

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