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Message Russia withdrew from Kherson because Ukraine wanted to blow up the Kakhovka dam

This is the message Russian propaganda is spreading to Western audiences. Allegedly, Russian troops retreated from Kherson due to fears that Ukrainian forces would blow up a dam at the nearby Kakhovka hydroelectric power station. The flood could have caused the death of many military and civilians.

The fact-checkers EU vs Disinfo drew attention to the spread of the message. In fact, Ukrainian military intelligence reported on October 21 that the Russian army had placed two military vehicles loaded with explosives on the road crossing the dam. The dam of the Kakhovska HPP is 30 meters high and holds back 18 million cubic meters of water. Undermining the dam could lead to huge flooding of Kherson and smaller settlements around. It would also have a significant impact on the operation of the Zaporizhzhia NPP, since this facility is inextricably linked with it. After the retreat of the Russian army from Kherson on November 11, the US satellite company Maxar reported that significant new damage to the dam in Nova Kakhovka in southern Ukraine was visible.

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