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Friday, February 23, 2024
Feb. 23, 2024

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Ukrainian spy agency targets Russian railroad

Key line in Siberia is hit by twin blasts, Ukraine media says

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KYIV, Ukraine — Ukraine’s spy agency staged two successive explosions on a railroad line in Siberia that serves as a key conduit for trade between Russia and China, Ukrainian media reported Friday. The attacks underscored Moscow’s vulnerability amid the war in Ukraine.

Ukrainska Pravda and other news outlets claimed the Security Service of Ukraine conducted a special operation to blow up trains loaded with fuel on the Baikal-Amur Mainline, which runs from southeastern Siberia to the Pacific Ocean in the Russian Far East.

The media cited unidentified sources in Ukrainian law enforcement agencies, a regular practice in claims of previous attacks in Russia.

The first explosion hit a tanker train in the Severonomuisky tunnel in Buryatia early Thursday, causing a fire that took hours to extinguish, Russian news outlets said. The 9.5-mile tunnel in southern Siberia is the longest in Russia.

A second explosion hours later hit another train carrying fuel as it crossed a 115-foot-high bridge across a deep gorge while traveling on a bypass route, according to the Ukrainian news reports.

Russian railways confirmed the tunnel explosion but didn’t say what caused it.

Russian daily business newspaper Kommersant cited investigators saying an explosive device was planted under one of the train’s carriages.

Ukrainian authorities have emphasized that their military and security agencies can strike targets anywhere in Russia.

Officials in Kyiv have claimed responsibility for some previous attacks on infrastructure facilities deep inside Russia.

Russia’s top counterintelligence agency, the Federal Security Service, said Friday that it detained a man accused of attacking a military airbase in western Russia with exploding drones in July and staging an explosion that derailed a cargo train in western Russia last month.

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