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‘Planned provocation by Kiev’, Moscow says after ammonia leak in eastern Ukraine

The Ukrainian prosecutor general has said a Russian shell hit a chemical plant outside Sumy shortly after 3 AM on Monday. The incident caused a leak in a 50-tonne tank of ammonia, which took several hours to contain.

It is estimated that the ammonia leak at the chemical plant in Sumy contaminated an area with a radius of more than 5 kilometers (3 miles), officials said. According to Igor Konashenkov, Russian military spokesman, the leak was ‘a planned provocation’ by Ukrainian forces in order to falsely blame Russia for a chemical attack.

The Ukrainian military training center in the Rivne region was also hit by cruise missile strikes overnight, Konashenkov said. He claimed 80 foreign and Ukrainian soldiers died in the attacks. Vitaliy Koval, the head of the Rivne region’s military administration, confirmed the missile strike on an early Monday training center but did not elaborate on the casualties.

The Sumykhimprom plant is located near the eastern edge of the city. This city has a population of 263,000 and has regularly been shelled by Russian forces over the past few weeks. The authorities in Sumy advised people to breathe through gauze bandages soaked with citric acid.



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