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Ukraine accuses Russian forces of blowing up dam

Ukraine accuses Russian forces of blowing up dam

The government is urging people living along the Dnipro river to evacuate

Ukraine has accused Russian forces of blowing up a dam in the south of the country, alerting people living along the Dnipro river to evacuate.

The interior ministry wrote on messaging app Telegram that the Kakhovka dam had been damaged, calling on people in 10 villages down river and parts of the city of Kherson to leave their homes.

President Volodymyr Zelensky called an emergency meeting of the country’s security and defence council according to its secretary Oleksiy Danilov on Twitter.

In a video posted to Telegram on Tuesday Oleksandr Prokudin, the head of the Kherson Regional Military Administration, said “the Russian army has committed yet another act of terror,” and warned that water will reach “critical levels” within five hours.

Ukraine and Russia have previously accused each other of targeting the dam with attacks and in October, Mr Zelensky predicted Russia would destroy the dam in order to cause a flood.

Authorities, experts and residents have for months expressed concerns about water flows through — and over — the Kakhovka dam.

In February, water levels were so low many feared a meltdown at the Russian-occupied Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, whose cooling systems are supplied with water from the Kakhovka reservoir held up by the dam.

By mid-May, after heavy rains and snow melt, water levels rose beyond normal levels, flooding nearby villages.

Ukraine controls five of the six dams along the Dnipro river, which runs from its northern border with Belarus to the Black Sea and is crucial for the entire country’s drinking water and power supply.

The Kakhovka dam — the one furthest downstream in the Kherson region — is controlled by Russian forces.

Published: by Radio NewsHub

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