Russian forces hold 11 Ukrainian mayors captive, kill one in custody, Ukrainian minister says

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A man stands with his dog as smoke rises after a Russian attack in Odessa on April 3. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)

On Sunday, the Russian Ministry of Defense confirmed a strike on an oil refinery and fuel storage facilities in the key Ukrainian port city of Odessawhich has been largely spared the brunt of Russian assaults since the invasion began in February.

“This morning, high-precision sea and air missiles destroyed an oil refinery and three fuel and lubricant storage facilities near the city of Odessa, from which fuel was supplied to the group of Ukrainian troops in direction of Mykolaiv,” a statement said. on Telegram read.

Odessa Mayor Hennadii Trukhanov said there were no casualties after the strike.

“Today the occupiers hit Odessa’s critical infrastructure with missiles,” Trukhanov said in a televised address. “There is fire, there is smoke. Fortunately, there are no casualties. Only the buildings are damaged. The situation is under control.”

Trukhanov said civilian buildings and private homes were damaged in the attack.

The mayor also speculated that Russia would at some point use a contingent of troops stationed in Transnistria – a breakaway republic in neighboring Moldova – echoing concerns previously raised by Ukrainian officials.

“Of course, at some point, sooner or later, they will use them,” he said. “It’s hard to say in which direction, but there is a threat. (The Ukrainian armed forces) know it and are working on it.”

Russian troops stationed in Transnistria are not known to have been involved in The invasion of Russia from Ukraine.

A bit of context: A CNN crew witnessed the aftermath of the strike, which happened Sunday morning and sent thick clouds of black smoke over the city.

A fuel depot in the Ukrainian city of Odessa was burning, the CNN crew at the scene found, and a local told CNN he heard six explosions at the fuel depot before sunrise. Sun.

Speaking about the strike, Serhii Bratchuk, spokesperson for the operational staff of the Odessa regional military administration, said: “One of the critical infrastructure objects was hit this morning.”

“Currently the situation is under control, the respective departments are working on the spot. Details will be announced later,” Bratchuk added.

Odessa City Council confirmed an airstrike on its Telegram account on Sunday morning, saying some Russian missiles were shot down by their air defense system and fires broke out in some neighborhoods.

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