Ukrainian Troops Blow Up Cistern With Hydrochloric Acid at Chemical Plant in LPR, Republic Says
09:29 GMT 05.04.2022 (Updated: 10:27 GMT 05.04.2022)
© SputnikPhoto of smoke allegedly rising from the site of explosion at the "Zarya" chemical plant in the city of Rubezhnoye in the Lugansk region
The plant is among the leading chemical factories in Ukraine according to its website. It is so far unclear if the nearby area, including the cities of Lisichansk and Severodonetsk, will be affected by the incident.
The Ukrainian armed forces have blown up a cistern purportedly containing hydrochloric acid at the "Zarya" chemical plant in the city of Rubezhnoye in the Lugansk region, a lieutenant colonel of the Lugansk People's Republic (LPR) forces has stated.
According to the LPR servicemen, the detonation was planned to harm specific regions recently recaptured by the troops of the people's republic.
"The armed forces of Ukraine are preparing to surrender Rubezhnoye and started blowing up [cisterns with] chemicals. Today, one tank, presumably containing hydrochloric acid, was blown up in the workshop number one of the Zarya plant. The detonation was scheduled taking into account the wind direction. The wind is currently blowing in the direction of Kudryashovka – a settlement that we have just liberated", LPR Lieutenant Colonel Andrey Marochko said.
The first videos, apparently from the site of the incident, have already appeared online, showing a pillar of orange smoke rising from the plant.
It is unclear if any city near Rubezhnoye has been affected. There have yet not been any reports of residents being poisoned by the chemicals released by the blast at the plant.
Despite initially being part of the originally declared LPR, Rubezhnoye had been under the control of Ukrainian forces since 2014 after Kiev launched a military campaign against the Donbass people's republics. LPR forces are currently working on clearing out Rubezhnoye and nearby settlements from the remaining Ukrainian forces as part of a broader effort to regain control over the declared borders of the republic.