Moscow Drone Attack Briefly Shuts Vnukovo Airport

[BBC] Russia has accused Ukraine of a drone attack on Moscow that damaged two buildings and briefly shut one of the city’s airports.

A drone was shot down over the Odintsovo district, west of the city centre, and two others were neutralised but crashed into offices, Russia’s defence ministry says.

One person has been injured, Russia’s state news agency Tass reports.

Ukrainian officials have not acknowledged the incident.

The city’s mayor Sergei Sobyanin said the facades of two office buildings were slightly damaged.

Photos from the scene show that several windows have been damaged at the corner of the buildings, with debris scattered on the ground below.

One eyewitness, who only gave her first name as Liya, told Reuters news agency she could see fire and smoke.

“We heard an explosion and it was like a wave, everyone jumped,” she said.

“Then there was a lot of smoke and you couldn’t see anything. From above, you could see fire.”

Flights were briefly suspended from Vnukovo Airport, southwest of the city centre, and incoming planes were redirected to other airports.

In a statement, the defence ministry said the “attempted terrorist attack” had been “thwarted”.

The drone attack in the early hours of Sunday is the latest that Moscow has blamed on Kyiv. Ukraine rarely claims responsibility for attacks inside Russia.

Moscow, located about 500km (310 miles) from the Ukrainian border, has rarely been targeted since Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

But Russia has accused Ukraine of launching a series of drone strikes on its territory in recent months, including several on the capital.

The most notable was in May, when Russia claimed Ukraine used two drones to attack the Kremlin – the heart of the city. Ukraine denied attacking the Kremlin or targeting President Vladimir Putin.

Russia’s defence ministry says Ukraine also carried out an overnight drone attack on Crimea – territory which was annexed by Russia in 2014. Officials say 16 drones were destroyed and a further nine were suppressed, Tass news agency reports.

Meanwhile, Ukrainian officials say a Russian missile attack on the city of Sumy, in the north east of the country, has left one person dead and five injured.

A building was destroyed in an explosion at about 20:00 local time (17:00 GMT), according to public broadcaster Suspilne.

Officials also say two people were killed in the southern city of Zaporizhzhia on Saturday.

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