Fire at Volgograd oil refinery as Ukrainian drone strikes on Russia’s energy sector intensify

A fire broke out at an oil refinery in the southern Russian city of Volgograd following an overnight Ukrainian drone strike, Volgograd region Governor Andrey Bocharov told local news on Sunday.

Bocharov said that a drone attack on the region had been “repelled” by air defences, but that one of the downed drones had fallen onto the site of the oil refinery, causing a fire that was later extinguished.

The strike is the second on the Lukoil facility this year, with its management reporting in April that the refinery had resumed normal operations following a drone strike in February.

The Volgograd oil refinery. Photo: Lukoil

The Volgograd oil refinery. Photo: Lukoil

Russia’s Defence Ministry confirmed that one drone had been intercepted over the Volgograd region overnight Saturday, as well as three over the western Bryansk region, two over the central Lipetsk region, and two missiles over the southwestern Belgorod region.

Ukrainian public broadcaster Suspilne cited a source in the country’s military intelligence service confirming the attack on the Volgograd refinery, as well as others on an oil depot in the western Kaluga region and a metallurgical plant in the Lipetsk region.

Suspilne and other Ukrainian outlets had on Saturday cited a source who said that Ukraine had damaged the same Volgograd facility in a separate drone strike in the early hours of Saturday morning.

In an attempt to stem the flow of oil revenue funding the Kremlin’s war machine, Ukraine has increasingly targeted Russian oil refineries and depots in recent months. A strike on an oil facility in the central Russian republic of Bashkortostan on Thursday is believed to be one of Ukraine’s longest-range attacks since Russia began its full-scale invasion of its neighbour over two years ago.

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