Some 20,000 people were being evacuated on Thursday after explosions at a massive arms depot in eastern Ukraine, in what is being treated as an act of sabotage.
The fire and blasts engulfed the base in Balakleya, creating apocalyptic scenes. There are no reports of injuries.
The base is just 100km from the frontline of Ukraine’s conflict. The nearly 140,000 tonnes of ammunition stored there is reportedly used to supply Ukrainian troops fighting pro-Russia rebels.
An investigation for sabotage is underway amid suspicions that an explosive device could have been dropped by a drone, after reports of a previous attempt to destroy the base this way two years ago.