Russia intercepts new wave of drones over Moscow, office tower hit

Moscow mayor says the office building damaged was the same one hit in an attack on Sunday.

Emergency personnel work near a damaged office building in the Moscow City following a reported Ukrainian drone attack in Moscow Russia, August 1, 2023.
Emergency personnel work near a damaged office building in Moscow following a reported Ukrainian drone attack, Russia, August 1, 2023 [Evgenia Novozhenina/ Reuters]

Russian forces have again downed several drones over the city of Moscow, according to officials, with one of the intercepted aircraft damaging the same office tower that was hit in an attack over the weekend.

The Russian defence ministry, in a message on Telegram on Tuesday, said its anti-aircraft units had “thwarted a terrorist attack by the Kyiv regime” and downed two drones in the suburbs west of the city centre.

But another drone, having been “hit by radio-electronic equipment and, having run out of control, crashed on the territory of the complex of non-residential buildings” in Moscow City, the ministry said, referring to a business district in the capital.

Earlier, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said the building hit on Tuesday was the same one struck in a drone attack on Sunday.

“One flew into the same tower at the Moskva City complex hit previously. The facade has been damaged on the 21st floor. Glazing was destroyed over 150 square metres,” he said.

“There is no information on casualties,” he added.

The attack on Tuesday is the latest in a series of recent drone assaults – including on the Kremlin and Russian towns near the border with Ukraine – that Moscow has blamed on Kyiv.

The Russian defence ministry said on Sunday it had intercepted three Ukrainian drones over the capital in an attack that damaged two buildings and briefly suspended operations at the Vnukovo International Airport.

The Kremlin said that assault was “an act of desperation” by Kyiv due to setbacks on the battlefield in Ukraine.

Ukrainian officials did not acknowledge the attacks but President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said in the aftermath that the conflict was now coming to Russia.

“Gradually, the war is returning to the territory of Russia – to its symbolic centres and military bases, and this is an inevitable, natural and absolutely fair process,” he said.

“Ukraine is getting stronger,” he added.

Ukraine began its long-awaited counteroffensive in June but has made modest advances in the face of stiff resistance from Russian forces on the front line.

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies