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Russia-Ukraine war comes to Moscow as anti-aircraft missiles down drones

The drones that lost control fell on multi-storey residential buildings in Moscow region (Video grab courtesy: Twitter)

Russia on Tuesday accused the Armed Forces of Ukraine of attempting terrorist attacks in capital Moscow and its surroundings by using eight aircraft-type Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).

The attempts of terrorist attacks took place early in the morning on May 30 in Moscow and the Moscow Region, said the Russian Foreign Ministry while strongly condemning the act.

All eight aircraft-type UAVs were hit by Russian air defence and electronic warfare systems. While five drones were shot down by Pantsir-S anti-aircraft missile systems, the remaining three were suppressed by electronic warfare, as a result of which they lost control and deviated from their intended targets.

The drones that lost control fell on multi-storey residential buildings near the Moskovsky state farm, on Leninsky Prospekt and Profsoyuznaya Street but there were no serious injuries from their fall.

The Investigative Committee of Russia has opened a criminal case and promised that all persons involved in the attacks will be found and will be severely punished.

“These attacks were planned and carried out by the neo-Nazi Kyiv regime, for which the use of methods of acts of terror has become a sinister practice. Its representatives have long and openly called for ‘retaliation strikes’ against Moscow,” said the Russian Defence Ministry in a statement.

“Such attacks, while making no sense from a military point of view, seem to be directed solely against the civilian population with the aim of spreading panic among civilians,” it added.

Moscow said that it “reserves the right to take the most severe measures” in response to the terrorist attacks as assurances from NATO officials that Ukraine will not strike deep into Russian territory turn out to be “completely hypocritical”.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday evening that the drone attack on Moscow was Kyiv’s “response” to Moscow’s Sunday strike on the Ukrainian military intelligence headquarters.

“In response, the Kyiv regime chose a different path to frighten Russians,” Putin told state television.

Meanwhile, Ukraine also blamed Russia for conducting “massive attacks” on Kyiv for the third night in a row.

“Ukrainian Air defence forces shot down more than 20 Iranian-made Shahed drones. The falling debris hit an apartment building and sparked a fire, killing at least one person and injuring three others,” the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs tweeted.

Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba took to Twitter, asking for “greater production and supply” of air defence systems and ammunition by European Union and NATO partners.

“Every day matters. The more we do today, the sooner we will end the war with our victory,” tweeted Volodymyr Zelensky, President of Ukraine late Tuesday afternoon.

Earlier this month, Russia had alleged that Ukraine struck the Kremlin residence of President Vladimir Putin with two UAVs.

“We regard these actions as a planned terrorist act and an attempt on the life of the President, carried out on the eve of Victory Day, the May 9th Parade, at which the presence of foreign guests is also planned,” said the Kremlin on May 3.