In the early hours of Monday, Moscow found itself under a drone attack, the latest development in an escalating series of incidents. The Russian authorities have pointed the finger at Ukraine for the assault, which resulted in a drone falling near the main headquarters of Russia’s Defense Ministry, all while Russia executed fresh strikes on the southern Ukrainian port infrastructure.
The Mayor of Moscow, Sergei Sobyanin, reported no casualties following the drone impacts on two non-residential buildings in the city. Further, an ammunition depot in the Russian-claimed Crimea was targeted by another drone, causing traffic disruption on a key highway.
Russian media spotlighted the fallout of the strike: one drone dropped onto the Komsomolsky highway near central Moscow, causing property damage in close proximity to the Defense Ministry building. It’s uncertain whether the headquarters of the Defense Ministry, situated just over a mile away from the Kremlin, was the primary target or if another central Moscow location was in the drone’s crosshairs.
The second drone hit an office building in southern Moscow, leaving several upper floors devastated, a stark contrast to the damage caused by previous drone attacks on the Russian capital.
Emergency services were promptly on the scene, assessing the damages and redirecting traffic from the areas impacted by the drone debris.
The Ukrainian authorities are yet to publicly acknowledge their role in this second drone attack on the Russian capital in the same month. In the earlier attack on July 4, the Russian military reported that their air defenses downed four out of five drones on the outskirts of Moscow, while the fifth was reportedly jammed by electronic warfare and forced to land.
Dmitry Peskov, a Kremlin spokesman, remarked on the increasing frequency of drone attacks, stating that continuous, around-the-clock measures are being taken to counter these threats. However, he stopped short of detailing whether the frequency of attacks has led to any bolstering of Russia’s air defense systems.
Meanwhile, an ammunition depot in northern Crimea was the target of another drone attack early Monday, leading to traffic interruption and several nearby villages’ evacuation. The Russian Defense Ministry reported jamming and crashing 11 out of 17 attacking drones into the Black Sea, while three more were shot down.
Ukraine’s digital transformation minister, Mykhailo Fedorov, commented on the recent drone attacks, implying that Russia’s air defenses and electronic warfare capabilities are increasingly ineffective against such aerial threats.
Ukrainska Pravda, a Ukrainian news outlet, reported that Ukrainian military intelligence carried out the drone attack on Moscow as a special operation.
As these high-stakes operations continue, it’s clear that the future of this region hangs in the balance, with the global community closely watching the unfolding events. The outcome remains uncertain, but one thing is sure: this is a critical chapter in the history of Russian-Ukrainian relations, and its impact will likely reverberate far beyond the borders of these two nations.