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Russian state media: Kremlin attacked by drones

by The Kyiv Independent news desk May 3, 2023 3:31 PM 2 min read
A screenshot from a video circulating on social media allegedly showing drones attacking the Kremlin overnight on May 3. (Video: Ihor Lachenkov / Telegram)
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Russian dictator Vladimir Putin's Kremlin residence was targeted by two Ukrainian drones overnight on May 3, according to Russian state media RIA Novosti.

Russian state media claimed that "as a result of timely actions taken by the military and special services with the use of radar control systems, the (drones) were disabled."

Videos are circulating on social media of the alleged attack. The Kyiv Independent could not independently verify the authenticity of the footage.

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Video: Ihor Lachenkov / Telegram

The Kremlin's spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, said that Putin was not at the residence at the time of the attack. He said Russia considers the attack Ukraine's assassination attempt on Putin.

An unnamed senior Ukrainian official told Reuters on May 3 that Kyiv had nothing to do with the attack.

President Volodymyr Zelensky's spokesperson Serhii Nikiforov also denied Ukraine's involvement in a statement to BBC Ukraine on May 3.

"We have no information about the so-called overnight attacks on the Kremlin, but as President Zelensky has repeatedly stated, Ukraine is directing all available forces and means to liberate its own territories, not to attack others," Nikiforov said.

Nikoforov also said that what happened in Moscow is "obviously an escalation of the situation leading up to May 9" and Ukraine was expecting "a greeting" from Russia.  

The alleged drone attack occurred in the days leading up to Russia's planned May 9 celebration to commemorate the Soviet Union's role in the victory against Nazi Germany.

Normally a major holiday in Russia, this year many of the planned events have been scaled down or canceled due to security concerns.

Russian state media reported on April 18 that this year's celebrations will not include the "Immortal Regiment" march, which is typically a mass event held throughout Russia. The march involves processions of people carrying photos of their relatives who died during World War II.

Mykhailo Podolyak, an advisor to the head of Ukraine's Presidential Office, wrote that "Russia is clearly preparing a large-scale terrorist act," implying that Russia staged the event.

According to Podolyak, "Something is happening in the Russian Federation, but definitely without Ukrainian drones over the Kremlin."

Since the start of Russia's all-out war against Ukraine on Feb. 24, 2022, there have been multiple reports about fires breaking out across Russia and other acts of sabotage which some believe to be carried out by the Ukrainian military or local partisan groups.

Local officials reported on May 1 that power lines were blown up in Russia's Leningrad Oblast, and a train carrying fuel supplies was derailed in Bryansk Oblast.

Ukraine has not claimed responsibility for these incidents.

This Week in Ukraine Ep. 5 – Everything we know about Ukrainian attacks inside Russia
“This Week in Ukraine” is a video podcast hosted by Kyiv Independent’s reporter Anastasiia Lapatina. Every week, Anastasiia sits down with her newsroom colleagues to discuss Ukraine’s most pressing issues. Episode #5 is dedicated to Ukrainian attacks deep behind enemy lines – on Russian soil, and i…

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