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56,500 tons of ammunition removed from depot before fire in Ukraine's Ichnia

General Staff did not reveal the number of the ammunition stored at the depot with reference to the secrecy of data
18:15, 9 October 2018

Ministry of Defense of Ukraine

56,500 tons of the ammunition was taken away from the ammo depot near Ichnia, Chernihiv region, before the large-scale fire as President Advisor Yury Biryukov reported on Facebook.

"We had time to take away 56,500 ammo from the depot in Ichnia. We had to remove half of the amount and the rest should be disposed as there were a lot of old items. 56,500 tons of the ammunition. It is 1,500 railway wagons, a few hundreds of long echelons. The Defense Ministry pays for the transportation of the ammunition, no one transports anything for free," Biryukov wrote.

Related: Seats of fire at ammo stock in Ichnia localized, - Defense Ministry of Ukraine

He reminded that it is planned to allocate $356 million for the complex program of the building of the new bases and depots, however, only $17,9 million was allocated for 2018.

"It was planned to reduce the sum to $14,2 million next year. But we succeeded to defend it. We have begun to build a new base; the construction takes place according to the schedule and 4 storages of 15 are ready," he noted.

Related: Fire at Ukraine's Ichnia ammo depot, all we know for now

According to Biryukov, the perimeter of the base is about 8 km and its territory is 680 hectares.

"In spring, we have begun to build a new defensive perimeter and the end of the works was planned at the end of November. Despite the detachment of the militarized security, the battalion of the security composed of the soldiers was also created. We have begun the recruitment. But the issue with the resettlement arose as we almost did not possess the housing stock," he noted.

Related: 63 people seek medical care after Ukrainian ammunitions depot explosions

Rodion Tymoshenko, the Deputy Head of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine noted at the briefing broadcasted by 112 Ukraine, at the moment, 50% of the ammunition is transferred to other places to the storages of the closed type.

However, he did not reveal the number of the ammunition stored at the depot with reference to the secrecy of data.

"Surely, you are not the foreign intelligence, right? Do you need the exact data on the amount of the ammunition to count the military capacity of the Armed Forces of Ukraine? I think you do not need this information. I said that you were wrong. Totally wrong. It is incorrect to announce (even in the press) the exact amount of the tons of the ammunition and its caliber. Why should you inform the enemy, in terms of the combat actions, on the items at the depots?" Tymoshenko claimed.

Related: Railroad and automobile traffic closed in Ichnia, Chernihiv region

The State Emergency Service of Ukraine specified that armory comprises around 88,000 tons of ammunition.

Later the Defense Ministry belied this information.

"If you are interested in the number of tons, I will tell you that only 10% of the technical territory is burning. If you are interested in the total number of tons, then, this information is classified, but I will tell that the correspondents were wrong approximately in 1,5-2 times," Tymoshenko commented.

Related: Blast at Ukraine's Ichnia ammo depot: Defense Ministry finds four places of explosion

Reportedly, an explosion on the sixth armory occurred in Ichnia, Chernihiv region.

The air-space within 30 km is shut down, traffic and railway movement are stopped due to the emergency situation. 

Ukraine’s Defence Ministry reports that as at 7 am, the intensity of the explosions was 2-3 explosions per second.

Reportedly, the Military Prosecutor’s Office of the Central Region opened a criminal proceeding on the case of explosions on the ammunition depot in Ichnia. 

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