Russia hits Kyiv missile factory after flagship sunk
April 16, 2022 / 4:54 PM
Sharjah 24 – AFP: Russia pounded a Ukrainian rocket factory following the sinking of its Black Sea flagship, as President Volodymyr Zelensky said his allies could shorten the war by delivering the weapons he had requested.
The Vizar factory, near Kyiv's international airport, was seriously damaged in the overnight strikes, an AFP journalist saw on Friday.
Russia said it had used sea-based long-range missiles to hit the plant, which Ukraine's state weapons manufacturer says produced Neptune cruise missiles -- the projectiles both Kyiv and Washington say were used to sink the Moskva warship.
A Pentagon official briefing reporters said the ship had been hit with two Neptunes -- contradicting Russia's claim that the ship lost balance in rough seas as it was towed to port after ammunition exploded.
The Moskva had been leading Russia's naval effort in the seven-week conflict, and the fate of its crew of more than 500 was uncertain.
The Pentagon official said survivors were observed being recovered by other Russian vessels, but Ukrainian authorities said bad weather had made rescue operations impossible.
The Russian fleet in the Black Sea has been blockading the besieged port city of Mariupol, where Russian officials say they are in full control although Ukrainian fighters are still holed up in the city's fortress-like steelworks.