The blast in Belgorod was the result of a stray aviation bomb, Russian Defense Ministry has said
The Russian Defense Ministry has identified the cause of the explosion in Belgorod as the unintended release of an aerial bomb. The projectile left a massive crater in a residential area and destroyed several vehicles, but did not cause any injuries.
The “unusual descent of an aviation munition” took place around 10:15 pm Moscow time, as a Su-34 of the Russian Aerospace Forces flew over Belgorod, the ministry said in a statement. The Russian military has launched an investigation into the incident.
According to regional governor Vyacheslav Gladkov, the blast left a 20-meter crater in the street, destroying several cars and shattering windows at nearby buildings. One vehicle was thrown into the air and onto the roof of a nearby one-story building.
CCTV footage circulating online showed the unidentified projectile striking the ground. After penetrating the street, the object detonated a few moments later, sending a fountain of dirt and pieces of pavement high into the air.
Local authorities did not attribute the attack, amid rampant speculation on social media that Ukraine had sent another drone to target Belgorod’s power supply, following a similar attack earlier this week.
Belgorod is only 25 kilometers from the border with Ukraine. The city and the eponymous region have frequently been targets of Ukrainian artillery, drones and missiles since Moscow launched its military operation in February 2022. Earlier on Thursday, Gladkov had told local officials that 30 civilians have died and another 120 have been injured as the result of Ukrainian attacks.
The Russian military has stepped up airstrikes against Ukrainian targets over the past several weeks, using specially modified FAB-500 glide bombs dropped from strike aircraft such as the Su-34.
April 21, 2023 at 02:42AM