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 Explosions of varying intensity still rocking Balakliia ammunition depot, - State Emergency Service

Blasts of varying intensity are still being recorded on the territory of the ammunition depot in the Kharkiv region as of 7 a.m., March 24.

Censor.NET reports the update by the State Emergency Service of Ukraine.

According to the agency, about 20,000 people have been evacuated from the danger zone. They were provided with essential services at evacuation centers (food, water, and healthcare). The evacuation continues.

The operation of hazardous facilities has been suspended. The police patrol the streets, maintain law and order, and protect the evacuees' houses from looting. According to the Health Ministry, one person was injured and taken to a healthcare facility in Kharkiv.

Balakliia District State Administration now operates a hot line for the citizens.

Watch more: Explosions at Balakliia warehouse continue. VIDEO

The movement of trains and vehicls through Balakliia has been suspended. The airspace was also closed within a radius of 40 km from the scene.

"1,302 personnel and 210 units of equipment are engaged in the operation to eliminate the consequences of the emergency situation, including 362 State Emergency Service members, about 90 units of special and firefighting equipment, and nine EOD squads. Two fire-fighting trains deployed at the railroad station in Shebelynka village have been put on alert. The Emergency Response Headquarters headed by Chairman of the Balakliia District State Administration Stepan Maselskyi and the task force headed by Acting Chairman of the State Emergency Service Oleh Melchutskyi are operating onsite," the report says.

Read more: Half of Balakliia ammunition depot on fire, PM Hroisman says

As reported, March 23, 2017, an emergency arose at the military ammunition depot of the Defense Ministry at Balakliia, the Kharkiv region, due to explosions of ammunition. Several storage areas of rocket and cannon artillery ordnance (tank and artillery missiles of 125 mm and 152 mm caliber) were impacted by explosion and caught fire, which caused the detonation of the ammunition. Residents of the nearby areas have been evacuated.

Chief Military Prosecutor Anatolii Matios said the emergency in Balakliia was an act of sabotage.

Later, a video of the explosion at Balakliia ammunition depot was published online.
   
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