Ukrainian drones attack two oil refineries in southern Russia – source

By Thomson Reuters Feb 9, 2024 | 6:00 AM

KYIV (Reuters) – Ukrainian drones attacked two oil refineries in southern Russia’s Krasnodar region on Friday, causing a large fire at the Ilsky refinery during operations conducted by the SBU security service, a Ukrainian source told Reuters.

Regional authorities in Russia said earlier that a fire had broken out at the Ilsky refinery and been extinguished in around two hours. It gave no details of what caused the fire or its impact on the refinery’s output.

The Ukrainian source who declined to be identified said the attack hit the refinery’s primary processing unit.

SBU drones also attacked the nearby Afipsky oil refinery, but the results of that operation were still being determined, the source added. There was no comment from Russia on an Afipsky attack.

Ukraine in recent weeks has carried out a series of drone attacks on Russian oil facilities hundreds of kilometres from Ukrainian-controlled territory.

The Ilsky refinery is one of the main fuel producers in southern Russia, with a capacity to refine 6.6 million tons of crude a year. The Afipsky refinery is able to process 6 million tons of oil per year.

Damage to refineries from drone attacks and technical outages has led Russia to export more crude than it planned in February, potentially undermining its pledge to curb sales under a pact among OPEC+ oil-producing countries.

(Reporting by Tom Balmforth; editing by Jason Neely)