Emergency Imposed in Kherson as 7 Missing, 24 Villages Flooded : Ukraine Dam Collapse

Emergency Imposed in Kherson as 7 Missing, 24 Villages Flooded : Ukraine Dam Collapse

Kazkova Dibrova zoo on the Russian-held riverbank was completely flooded and all 300 animals were dead, a representative said via the zoo’s Facebook account.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of blowing up the dam and said authorities expected up to 80 settlements to be flooded, urging the world to “react." Kyiv also called for a meeting of the UN Security Council and warned of a potential “ecocide" after 150 tonnes of engine oil spilled into the river.

Western powers also blamed Russia for the damage, with EU chief Charles Michel calling it a “war crime," while NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg said the dam breach was “outrageous".

The United States “cannot say conclusively what happened at this point," National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters.

 United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Tuesday that the partial destruction of the Kakhovka dam in Ukraine was “another devastating consequence" of Russia’s invasion of its neighbor.

 A state of emergency has been imposed in Russian-controlled parts of Kherson region following the destruction of the Nova Kakhovka dam and the flooding of large area, Russia’s TASS state news agency reported.

Ukrainian authorities said 17,000 people were being evacuated and a total of 24 villages had been flooded.

Nova Kakhvovka mayor Vladimir Leontiev said seven people were known to be missing, according to TASS.

Officials estimated about 42,000 people were at risk from the flooding, which is expected to peak on Wednesday.

People in Kherson, the largest population centre nearby, headed for higher ground as water poured into the Dnipro River.

Buses, trains and private vehicles were marshalled to carry people to safety in about 80 communities threatened by flooding.

US warned there would be “likely many deaths" as Russia and Ukraine traded blame for ripping a gaping hole in the Nova Kakhovka dam, which is located on the frontline and provides cooling water for Europe’s largest nuclear plant.

Around 42,000 people were at risk from flooding in Russian and Ukrainian controlled areas along the Dnipro River after Nova Kakhovka dam collapsed.

Ukraine and Russia blame each other for the collapse of the massive dam.

An attack on a major Russian-held dam in southern Ukraine on Tuesday unleashed a torrent of water that flooded two dozen villages and forced the evacuation of 17,000 people.