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Russian media: Oil refinery in Krasnodar Krai hit by drones

by Abbey Fenbert March 17, 2024 4:01 AM 2 min read
Illustrative photo of flames come out of the tower of an oil refinery plant. (Christophe Gateau/picture alliance via Getty Images)
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Editor's Note: This is a developing story and is being updated.

A fire broke out at an oil refinery in Slavyansk-on-Kuban in Krasnodar Krai, Russia, amid reports of explosions and a possible drone attack overnight on March 17.

Residents of Slavyansk-on-Kuban  reported hearing explosions in the town and said that a local factory was on fire, according to the Russian Telegram news channel Baza.

At least one refinery worker was killed, Baza and other Russian news outlets claimed. Emergency personnel are at work on the site.

Russian media said the fire was most likely caused by a Ukrainian drone strike. Locals told the news channel Ostorozhno that a group of over five drones hit the facility.

In the past week, Ukrainian forces have carried out a series of drone strikes targeting Russia's oil industry. Ukraine has hit oil refineries in Samara, Ryazan, Kaluga, Nizhny Novgorod, and Leningrad oblasts.

The targeted facilities account for about 12% of Russia's oil-processing capacity, Bloomberg reported on March 14.

Ukrainian officials have not yet commented on reports of the strike.

President Volodymyr Zelensky said in his March 16 address that Ukraine's drone operations in Russia show that Kyiv is capable of striking long-range targets.

"What our own drones are capable of is a true Ukrainian long-range capability. Ukraine will now always have a strike force in the sky," he said.

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