Two civilians die after Ukraine attacks key bridge
Ukraine renewed its attempts to destroy the strategically-important Antonovsky Bridge in the southern region of Kherson on Monday, leaving two civilians dead and over a dozen injured, according to local authorities.
At around 1pm local time, Kiev’s forces launched a series of attacks using US-made HIMARS artillery systems. The shelling was apparently meant to sabotage Russian efforts to repair the bridge after previous attacks, local emergency services said.
At the moment of the attack, a crew of civilian employees from the local repair and restoration team were working on the bridge while a ferry carrying civilians was passing underneath it. The shelling left two people dead and 16 injured. Another three people are yet to be accounted for, according to local authorities.
A representative for the local emergency services told TASS news agency that there were no losses among those who are tasked with ensuring the transfer of civilians across the Dnieper river.
Meanwhile, Kirill Stremousov, the deputy head of the Kherson region, said that the Antonovsky Bridge was not destroyed as a result of the attack, but had sustained significant damage.
Earlier this month, Ukraine’s forces conducted a series of attacks on the bridge that connects the Russian-controlled city of Kherson with the rest of southern Ukraine. While the attack on August 8 did not lead to any casualties, it managed to destroy several pieces of equipment that had been brought to the site to repair damages from previous artillery strikes and caused local authorities to keep the bridge closed to all traffic.
While the bridge has been closed for nearly a month now, Russian forces have launched a ferry to transport civilians from one side of the Dnieper river to the other. Local authorities also reportedly plan to build a pontoon bridge that will connect the two shores and be easier to repair in case of an attack by the Ukrainian side.