Russia claims Ukraine launched a drone strike on the Kremlin. Russia continues to launch overnight drone attacks across Ukraine. A Russian artillery strike hits a hypermarket and the railway station in Kherson, causing casualties.
Drones attack Kremlin
On the afternoon of May 3, reports of an overnight drone attack on the Kremlin surfaced on Russian state media. Videos of the alleged incident show a ball of fire over one of the domes.
One of the first reports of the alleged attack appeared on Russian social media at around 2.30 a.m. Later, official Russian statements said that Putin’s residence came under attack by Ukrainian drones.
Putin’s spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said that the Kremlin views these actions as a “planned terrorist attack” and an assassination attempt targeting the President, carried out ahead of Victory Day. He added that plans to hold the May 9 parade in Red Square remain in place.
The Kremlin said it “reserves the right to take retaliatory measures where and when it sees fit.”
Ukraine denies involvement in the alleged strike. Advisor to the head of President Zelenskyi’s Office Mykhailo Podolyak suggested that “guerilla activities of local resistance forces” could be to blame.
“We are watching with interest the growing number of mishaps and incidents that are taking place in different parts of Russia. The emergence of unidentified unmanned aerial vehicles at energy facilities or on Kremlin’s territory can only indicate the guerilla activities of local resistance forces. As you know, drones can be bought at any military store,” he said on Twitter.
“The loss of power control over the country by Putin’s clan is obvious,” he added.
Ukraine does not strike targets inside Russia as it would not solve any military issue, Podolyak said.
“In a word, something is happening in Russia, but definitely without Ukraine’s drones over the Kremlin,” he said.
Overnight Russian drone attack targets Kyiv, Kropyvnytskyi
Russia carried out a series of drone strikes across Ukraine overnight into Wednesday. Explosions rocked Kyiv and a number of cities as Ukraine’s air defenses shot down 21 of the 26 Iranian-made Shahed-136/131 drones.
Spokesperson for the Ukrainian Air Force Command Colonel Yuriy Ihnat said that the drones had been launched from the Bryansk region in Russia and from the eastern coast of the Azov Sea. Some of the drones hit apartment and other buildings in various cities, and an oil depot in Kropyvnytskyi.
Both recent Russian missile strikes were likely focused on Ukraine’s military, industrial and logistical infrastructure, British defense intelligence said in an update on May 3. The observed types of facilities damaged by the Russian strikes indicates a possible shift away from targeting Ukraine’s electrical power network, it added.
Russia has been targeting civilian facilities constantly and systemically.
Russian artillery strike hits hypermarket, railway station in Kherson
On Wednesday morning, a Russian artillery strike hit the Epicenter hypermarket in Kherson. Three people were killed, and five others wounded, Interior Minister Ihor Klymenko said.
In the afternoon, Russia struck the Kherson railway station. According to preliminary data, one person was killed, and three more injured.
Kherson comes under Russian attack every day. Local authorities announced a curfew in Kherson lo last from 8 p.m. on May 5 until 6 a.m. on May 8.
What should we expect from the 11th package of sanctions. Ukraine in Flames #419
Since russia invaded Ukraine last February, the European Union has put in place 10 packages of restrictive measures against russian federation. The 11th package of sanctions would focus on combating the circumvention of existing restrictions, particularly for spare parts and equipment that russia deploys on the battlefield against Ukraine. However, Eastern European diplomats argue this is not going far enough, and propose to bring russia’s state-owned nuclear energy giant Rosatom back into the sanctions spotlight. Watch Ukraine in flames #419 to find out about the 11th package of sanctions against russia, what it provides and how it conveniently bypasses those parts of the russian economy that are too important for some EU member states.
- Oleksandr Lysenko, Independent corporate governance consultant, Member of the International Working Group on Russian Sanctions
- Volodymyr Tsybulko, Political Expert