Moscow was attacked with drones Tuesday morning in a rare incident that caused damage to some buildings and forced residents to evacuate homes, local officials said.
Strikes on residential areas of the Russian capital would be the first since the Kremlin's invasion of Ukraine, a dramatic display of the ways in which the war is increasingly coming home. They come weeks after an alleged drone attack on the Kremlin itself, and after days of deadly Russian bombardments against civilians in Kyiv.
The Russian defense ministry said in a statement that eight “aircraft-type” unmanned aerial vehicles were involved in the alleged attack on Moscow. All drones were destroyed, it added.
Three were jammed and lost control, the ministry said, and the other five were shot down by the Pantsir-S anti-aircraft missile system in the Moscow region.
The ministry blamed Ukraine for what it called a “terrorist attack.” Kyiv has not commented on the incident.
Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said that drone attacks had “caused minor damage to several buildings” in Moscow on Tuesday.
In a series of posts on the Telegram messaging app, Sobyanin said two people “sought medical attention” and there were no serious injuries,
He added that “for safety reasons” some residents were evacuated from some parts of the two affected buildings while emergency services were working on the scene.
Andrei Vorobyov, governor of the Moscow region, said in a message on Telegram that “several drones” were shot down on approach to Moscow. Vorobyov said residents of some areas of the wider region could hear sounds of explosions Tuesday morning, adding that it’s the air defense systems working. “I ask people to remain calm,” he added.
Russian authorities said an investigation had been launched into the drone attacks.
State news agency Tass reported that all airports in Moscow and the wider region are operating normally. The agency also reported that a woman received a "light shrapnel wound" after her residential building in southwest Moscow was hit by a drone.
It comes four weeks after Russia said two drones targeted the Kremlin, in what it called an assassination attempt on President Vladimir Putin. Moscow blamed Kyiv for that alleged incident as well, a charge Ukrainian officials denied.
The war in Ukraine has been creeping further into Russia in recent months, with drone attacks on military installations and oil refineries inside the country. Last week’s raid into the Belgorod region near the border left authorities scrambling to respond and exposed Russian defenses.
This is a breaking news story. Check back for more updates.