Russia Blames Ukraine For Ammonia Pipeline Sabotage, Civilians Injured

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by Tyler Durden
Thursday, Jun 08, 2023 - 12:40 AM

Moscow has accused Ukraine of blowing up the Tolyatti-Odesa pipeline in a new act of "sabotage" targeting vital Russian infrastructure. It is the longest ammonia pipeline in the world, at some 2,500km, and Russia utilizes it to export the industrial chemical, which is a core component of fertilizer, among other products.

A Wednesday statement by the Russian Defense Ministry said "A Ukrainian sabotage and reconnaissance group blew up the Tolyatti-Odesa ammonia pipeline" outside the village of Masyutovka in the northeastern Kharkiv region of Ukraine.

Screenshot via AFP

The sabotage reportedly occurred Monday evening, with photos and footage subsequently appearing on social media which show a chemical leak and thick, white haze of smoke leaking from the pipeline.

The defense ministry cited injuries from the dangerous chemical leak:

"As a result of this terrorist act, there are victims among the civilian population. They received the necessary medical care," the MoD said.

Ukrainian officials have acknowledged the damaged pipeline, but have instead put the blame on Russia, alleging its forces shelled it.

The Russian statement added: "Currently, the ammonia remnants are being drained through the damaged pipeline sections from Ukrainian territory. There are no casualties among Russian army personnel."

According to a Dept of Labor OSHA fact sheet, "Ammonia is considered a high health hazard because it is corrosive to the skin, eyes, and lungs. Exposure to 300 parts per million (ppm) is immediately dangerous to life and health. Ammonia is also flammable at concentrations of approximately 15% to 28% by volume in air."

Additionally, "When mixed with lubricating oils, its flammable concentration range is increased. It can explode if released in an enclosed space with a source of ignition present, or if a vessel containing anhydrous ammonia is exposed to fire. Fortunately, ammonia has a low odor threshold (20 ppm), so most people will seek relief at much lower concentrations."

Toxic gas clouds....

Currently all eyes are on the bigger disaster unfolding in southern Ukraine and also greatly impacting Crimea - the Tuesday explosion and breach of the Kakhovka dam on the Dnipro River. Like with other major incidents throughout the war, both sides are blaming the other - but tellingly, the Biden administration has in this case been reluctant to quickly cast blame on Russia, given it would have no incentive to blow up the very dam it was occupying and overseeing, and which supplies water to Crimea