President Vladimir Putin was the target of a failed assassination attempt by Ukrainian drones early on Wednesday, according to Russia, which also threatened punishment for the “terrorist” conduct. The president of Ukraine refuted it by stating, “We don’t attack Putin or Moscow.”
Putin’s spokesperson Dmitry Peskov informed Russia’s national news agency RIA Novosti that the Russian president was not in the Kremlin at the time but rather at his Novo-Ogaryovo estate outside of Moscow.
The alleged attack was not independently verified; although the Russian authorities claimed it happened over night, they offered no supporting documentation. The Kremlin’s reporting of the incident took hours, and there have been questions about why footage of it also appeared later in the day.
A video taken from across the river from the Kremlin and broadcast overnight on a local Moscow news Telegram channel appears to show smoke rising over the structures. Its credibility could not be verified. Residents of a nearby apartment building reported hearing bangs and seeing smoke around 2:30 a.m., according to text that was included with the video.
Another social media video appears to capture the moment a drone bursts in a flash of fire above the top of the Senate Palace in the Kremlin, close to a flagpole flying the Russian tricolor, with debris falling on the roof. This video appears to have been shot from across Red Square and was posted online. Additionally, it was not possible to independently confirm this video.
The Russian military and security forces, according to the Kremlin, intercepted the drones before they could attack. It continued that nobody was wounded. According to its official website, drone debris that fell on the Kremlin grounds did not cause any harm.