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Russian Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin said that one span of the part of the Crimean Bridge for road vehicles is completely destroyed and cannot be restored.
The comments were made during a meeting with Russian dictator Vladimir Putin on July 17 after the bridge, which links Russian-occupied Crimea to Russia, was damaged by two blasts earlier in the day.
Khusnullin added that the underwater pillars of the bridge were not damaged by the explosion and that cars should be able to use the bridge again by the early hours of July 18.
However, only one lane will be open. Khusnullin said that it would take until September to restore two-way traffic on one side of the bridge. The side of the traffic that goes toward Kerch in Crimea will take until November to be fully restored.
During the meeting, Putin demanded to receive specific proposals to strengthen the security of the bridge. The attack marks the second explosion on the bridge within a year, with the last blast taking place in October 2022.
The bridge was partially closed as a result of the blast, and only fully re-opened in February 2023.
Media reports claim that Ukrainian intelligence services carried out the attack on July 17 with drones that travel over the surface of the water. The Kyiv Independent has not been able to verify this information.
The governor of Russia’s Belgorod Oblast, Vyacheslav Gladkov, claimed that the explosions killed a man and a woman, and injured a child.