Explosions were heard at two airbases in Russia – including one that houses bombers carrying nuclear weapons, according to reports.
Three servicemen were killed and six others injured when a tank truck exploded at an air base in Ryazan on Monday, reports Russian the state news agency RIA Novosti.
A plane was also damaged in the blast at the base, which houses long-range tankers that refuel the bombers in flight.
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Authorities in the Saratov region along the Volga River said they were also investigating reports of an explosion in the area of Engels airbase.
The site is home to Tu-95 and Tu-160 strategic bombers, which have been involved in launching strikes on Ukraine and are capable of carrying nuclear weapons.
Some residents were quoted by regional media as saying they saw a flash of light coming from the area.
Saratov Regional Governor Roman Busargin said there was no damage to civilian facilities, while checks continue on any incidents at military sites.
Asked if Vladimir Putin was informed about the Engels base explosion, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the Russian leader was regularly briefed on ongoing developments.
Retired Air Vice Marshal Sean Bell said the causes of the explosions are currently unknown – but it seems unlikely they were the result of long-range Ukrainian weapons.
“It could have been an accident, it could have been sabotage,” he told Sky News.
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It came as Russia launched a new series of missile strikes against Ukraine In Monday.
Officials said two people were killed in Zaporizhzhia. Three people were also injured, including a child.
People have crowded into Kyiv’s underground metro to take shelter amid fresh strikes on the capital.
Men, women and children tried to keep warm in thick hats and coats with temperatures dropping to -5C (23F).
Meanwhile, the office of the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said three rocket hits hit his hometown of Kryvyi Rih, killing a factory worker and injuring three others.
In the Kharkiv region, one person was killed in S-300 missile strikes on civilian infrastructure in the city of Kupyansk, he added.
He came as Western countries began to impose a ceiling price of $60 per barrel and a ban on certain types of Russian oil.
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This decision was part of new measures aimed at increasing pressure against Moscow during the war.
Russia, the world’s second largest oil producer, relies on the sale of oil and gas to support its economy, which has already been subject to sweeping international sanctions following the war in Ukraine.