In a pre-dawn attack on Monday, a critical bridge connecting Russia to the Moscow-annexed region of Crimea was targeted. Dealing significant damage to the vital supply route used by Kremlin forces in the ongoing conflict with Ukraine. This incident marks the second closure of the 19-kilometre (12-mile) Kerch Bridge within a year. Tragically, the attack resulted in the loss of two lives and left their daughter injured.
In response to the assault, Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered heightened security measures at the Kerch Bridge. This command echoes a similar directive issued by Putin in October 2022. The bridge sustained severe damage from an explosion, which Moscow also attributed to Kyiv.
Addressing the incident during a televised meeting with officials, Putin condemned the attack as a “terrorist act” committed by the Kyiv regime. He emphasised that the strike served no military purpose since the Crimean Bridge had not been utilized for military operations for a considerable period. Putin decried the brutality of the assault. Particularly due to the harm inflicted on innocent civilians.
Traffic on the bridge was halted
Following the attack, all vehicular traffic on the bridge was halted, and rail services were suspended for approximately six hours. Satellite images obtained from Maxar Technologies on Monday morning revealed substantial destruction to both the eastbound and westbound lanes of the bridge. At least one section has collapsed. However, the parallel railroad bridge appeared to remain unscathed.
According to the Russian National Anti-Terrorist Committee, the strike was carried out by two Ukrainian maritime drones. In light of these developments, Putin has assured that Russia will mount a response.
The Kerch Bridge plays a crucial role in facilitating the movement of supplies and personnel between Russia and Crimea. Its repeated targeting underscores the heightened tensions between Russia and Ukraine. Escalating the conflict that has plagued the region for years.
International observers are closely monitoring the situation, expressing concerns about the potential for further escalation and the implications it may have on regional stability. The attack on the Kerch Bridge highlights the continued volatility in the area and the urgent need for diplomatic efforts to resolve the conflict and prevent further loss of life.
As investigations into the attack unfold, the international community remains on alert, awaiting potential developments and responses from both Russia and Ukraine, as the fragile peace in the region continues to hang in the balance.