Russia fuel export terminal halts operations after suspected Kyiv drone attack

A huge Russian fuel export terminal near St. Petersburg was forced to suspend operations on Sunday after a suspected attack by Ukrainian drones, according to media reports.

Russian energy company Novatek suspended operations at the giant Ust-Luga Baltic Sea fuel export terminal due to a fire purportedly started by a drone attack, multiple media outlets reported. The Ust-Luga complex, located on the Gulf of Finland about 170 kilometers west of St. Petersburg, is used to ship oil and gas products to international markets.

The BBC reported that an explosion at the terminal was caused by Ukrainian drones, citing an unidentified official in Kyiv. The Interfax-Ukraine news agency, citing unnamed sources, said the fire was the result of a special operation carried out by Ukraine’s security services.

The blast caused a large fire at the Ust-Luga terminal but no injuries, Russian officials said, according to the media reports.

Regional governor Alexander Drozdenko said a “high alert regime” was in place after the incident at the terminal.

Novatek said the fire was the result of “external influence,” without providing further details.

It was not clear how long the disruption would last and what the impact would be on international energy markets.

The suspected attack, along with what Russia says was a Ukrainian artillery strike on civilians in a Russian-held city in eastern Ukraine that left at least 25 dead, could prompt wider Russian retaliation in a war that shows no sign of ending.

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