Ukrainian Drones Reportedly Attacked the Kremlin – Reports circulated on Wednesday morning that a pair of Ukrainian drones attempted to strike the private residence of Russian President Vladimir Putin within the Kremlin complex in Moscow overnight. Russia has called the incident a “terrorist attack.”
“Last night, the Kyiv regime made an attempt to strike with unmanned aerial vehicles on the Kremlin residence of the President of the Russian Federation,” the state-run Tass news agency quoted the Kremlin, per the Moscow Times.
The Russian military and special services reportedly shot down the drone. Putin was unharmed, and the incident did not affect his work schedule, the Kremlin announced.
“From the [drone] fragments’ fall and the scattering across the territory of the Kremlin, no one was injured, and there was no material damage,” the statement said.
The claim could not be independently verified, and Kyiv has not commented on the alleged attempt. Unverified video footage published on social media appeared to show smoke rising from inside the Kremlin.
Ban on Drones in Moscow
Tass also reported that Moscow authorities introduced a ban on all unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) flying over the Russian capital city except those necessary for state needs. The protocol on the ban was signed during a meeting of the Moscow crisis center, the City Hall announced.
“The document signed regulates the order of issuing permits for the flights of unmanned aerial vehicles over the city. Such permits will now be issued only for government needs,” the authorities said.
Additionally, city officials said they will bolster work on intercepting illegal drone flights, while they will hold individuals and organizations liable for violating airspace rules and regulations.
Drone Strike on Putin?
The alleged Putin attack comes as Ukraine is expected to launch a significant counteroffensive aimed at liberating territories taken by Russian forces last year.
It also comes following a wave of reported drone strikes and sabotage incidents within Russia in the lead-up to May 9, the day when Russia celebrates the Soviet victory in the Second World War.
It typically includes massive military parades throughout the country, with the largest being held in Moscow. This year, events in Belgorod, Kursk, Voronezh, Oryol, and Pskov region, as well as the Russian-occupied Crimean peninsula have scuttled the planned events, citing “safety concerns.”
“There won’t be a parade in order to not provoke the enemy with large numbers of equipment and service members in central Belgorod,” the region’s head Vyacheslav Gladkov said in a statement on social media last month.
Despite Wednesday’s alleged drone attack, the May 9 parade in Moscow will go on as planned.
The incident – if true – could further rattle the Russian leader.
As previously reported Putin avoids traveling by air out of security fears and primarily uses a private train to get around his country. All of the Russian leader’s main residences are now connected to railway lines, with secret stations being built so that the Russian leader can limit his time in the air, according to a report by the Proyekt (Project) investigative news outlet.
It was also reported this week that Putin increasingly fears a coup. This past weekend he fired Colonel-General Mikhail Mizintsev, one of Russia’s top military commanders.
In April 2022, Putin also removed more than 100 Federal Security Bureau agents from their positions, and the former leader of the Russian Fifth Service, Sergei Beseda, was placed under house arrest as part of an effort to send a “very strong message” to Russian elites who oppose Putin’s war.
The drone strike isn’t likely to have helped his paranoia.
Author Experience and Expertise
A Senior Editor for 19FortyFive, Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu.