Russian authorities: Restoring power to occupied Kherson

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russian-appointed authorities said they were working to partially restore power to the occupied Ukrainian city of Kherson following what they called a Ukrainian terror attack on the lines. electrical.

The southern regional city, which Moscow illegally annexed in September, was cut off from electricity and water on Sunday after three power lines were damaged.

Kirill Stremousov, deputy head of the pro-Kremlin administration of the partially occupied Kherson region, said on Monday that “electricity and connectivity are partially restored” in the city of Kherson. The alleged attack happened on the Berislav-Kakhovka power line, and Russian state media reported on Sunday that the Kakhovka hydroelectric plant was also damaged by Ukrainian strikes.

Ukrainian officials have not responded to the allegations.

Stremousov has repeatedly called for civilians to be evacuated from Kherson – which is on the west bank of the Dnieper – to Russian-held territory on the eastern bank in anticipation of a major Ukrainian counteroffensive to retake the port city. strategic.

Last month, Ukraine’s Southern Operational Command reported that Russian occupying forces in the Kherson region had deliberately cut off electricity and water and deprived the population of internet access in order to force them to clear out.

Tens of thousands of civilians have already left the regional capital after being ordered to evacuate the area in October in the face of the Ukrainian counter-offensive which took over many settlements in the region.

However, on Monday, the administration installed by Russia in the region announced that it was stopping “the movement of civilian vehicles across the Dnieper by boat and pontoon”, citing “increased military danger” and threats against civilians.

Meanwhile, in another annexed region, Donetsk, Russian-installed officials accused Ukrainian forces of bombarding the regional capital, also called Donetsk, with HIMARS rocket launchers early Monday.

The city’s Kremlin-backed mayor, Alexei Kulemzin, said a fire broke out at an administrative building of the Donetsk Railways, but the fire had been brought under control and there was no had no casualties. Ukrainian authorities have not commented on the incident. The city of Donetsk has been controlled by Russian-backed separatists since 2014.

In territory held by Ukraine, Russia has repeatedly targeted electricity infrastructure. Ukraine’s state-owned electricity network operator Ukrenergo on Monday announced power cuts in the capital Kyiv and the surrounding region, as well as in the regions of Chernihiv, Cherkasy, Sumy, Kharkiv, Poltava and Zhytomyr.

Deputy head of Ukraine’s presidential office Kyrylo Tymoshenko said Russian strikes in the Zaporizhzhia region targeted civilian objects, including a cultural center, farmers’ warehouses and private residences. The official noted that the Zaporizhzhia region – also illegally annexed by Russia in September but not fully controlled by Russian forces – has been shelled 52 times in the past 24 hours and one person has been killed.

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Christi C. Elwood