Russian air defence forces shot down two Ukrainian missiles over the Crimean Bridge, a Russian official said on Saturday, as videos on social media showed plumes of smoke near the structure.
Sergei Aksyonov, Russian-installed governor of the Crimean peninsula, claimed the bridge hadn't been damaged.
"Air defence forces shot down two enemy missiles over the Kerch Strait. The Crimean bridge was not damaged," he said on social media.
⚡️A number of telegram channels and monitoring groups report explosions on the #CrimeanBridge.— KyivPost (@KyivPost) August 12, 2023
The Russian-installed head of temporarily occupied Crimea, Sergey Aksyonov, claims air defense forces shot down two Ukrainian missiles in the #KerchStrait area. pic.twitter.com/U3OrYUbsgM
Videos showing smoke near the Crimean Bridge started spreading on some Telegram channels. Oleg Kryuchkov, an advisor to Aksyonov, claimed the smoke was intentionally created as part of a plan by special services.
Andriy Yermak, President Zelensky's chief of staff, posted the Beatles song "Yellow Submarine" on his Telegram channel. Some media outlets view it as a hint that the bridge was attacked with marine drones.
In a separate statement, the Russian defense ministry said that Ukraine attempted to strike the Crimean bridge with an S-200 anti-aircraft guided missile.
The missile was detected and intercepted by Russian air defense systems, the ministry said, adding that there were no victims or damage.
Earlier Saturday, Russia said its forces shot down 20 unmanned Ukrainian drones near the Crimean Peninsula where Kyiv has stepped up attacks.
Fourteen drones were downed by air defense systems and six more through electronic warfare, the defense ministry said.
Crimea, annexed illegally by Russia in 2014, has been targeted by Kyiv regularly since the Kerch Bridge was first hit on Oct. 8, 2022, but has come under more intense, increased attacks in recent weeks.
Kyiv has repeatedly said that it plans to take Crimea back.
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