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Smoke and flames rise over a warehouse storing ammunition for multiple rocket launcher systems at a military base in the town of Kalynivka in Vinnytsia region, Ukraine September 27, 2017. REUTERS/Gleb Garanich

(reuters_tickers)

KIEV (Reuters) - Massive explosions and a blaze at a military ammunition depot in central Ukraine forced authorities to evacuate 24,000 people and close airspace over the region, officials said on Wednesday.

The blasts occurred late on Tuesday at a military base near Kalynivka in the Vynnytsya region, 270 kilometres (168 miles) west of Kiev, Ukrainian emergencies service said in a statement.

One person was injured, it said.

Arriving in the region hours later, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman said "external factors" were behind the incident.

(Reporting by Pavel Polityuk; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)

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Reuters