The Crimean bridge must be destroyed, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said. He emphasized that for Kyiv “this is an enemy object built outside the law, outside international law and applicable norms”.
“Therefore, this is our goal. And any target that brings war, not peace, must be neutralized”, he said, speaking at the Aspen Security Forum.
Zelensky stressed that the Crimean bridge is not just a “small logistical road”. With its help, Russian troops receive ammunition and militarize the entire peninsula.
Zelensky is currently discussing with US leader Joe Biden the supply of ATACMS missiles with a kill radius of up to 300 kilometers, the US president’s national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, said.
According to him, the US is ready to “take risks” on the issue of supplying new weapons to Ukraine, but there is no final decision yet. “Whether we ultimately give ATACMS or not is for the president to decide. He has spoken to President Zelensky about this. They’re continuing discussions”, Sullivan said.
Earlier, The Wall Street Journal wrote that the White House is close to approving the delivery of these missiles, and Kyiv has already received “positive signals” to this effect.
On the night of July 17, there were two explosions on the Crimean bridge. As a result, one span collapsed, a couple from the Belgorod region was killed, their 14-year-old daughter was moderately injured.
Automobile traffic on the bridge is now carried out only on one lane in reverse mode. The railroad part was not affected. The repair work was estimated at 1.3 billion rubles.
According to the National Anti-Terrorist Committee, the Crimean bridge was attacked by two surface drones. The Investigative Committee has opened a criminal case over the terrorist attack.
Putin held the “Kyiv regime” responsible for the incident, and also called the bombing “senseless from a military point of view,” as he claimed that “the Crimean bridge has not been used for military transportation for a long time”.
However, Putin did not provide any proof of this, and at the same meeting, the “head” of Crimea, Sergey Aksyonov, said that while the bridge was not working, “cargoes of the Defense Ministry” were transported by the Kerch crossing.
Kiev believes that the Crimean bridge is one of the main supply routes for Russian troops in southern Ukraine. Officially, the authorities did not recognize involvement in the attack. The SBU commented on the incident with the words, “Again the bridge went to sleep”, recalling the previous explosion, which occurred on October 8, 2022, and promised to disclose details after the end of the war.