Russian air defence neutralises 'unidentified object'

Pskov and Bryansk regions have become targets for Ukrainian attacks

A Ukrainian serviceman operates a drone. Reuters
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Air defences in Russia have shot down a Ukrainian drone as well as an “unidentified object”, Russian sources said on social media.

First, anti-aircraft units destroyed a Ukrainian drone on Thursday evening over the Bryansk region in the south of the country, the Ministry of Defence said on Telegram.

The Bryansk region has been the target of several recent attempts by Ukraine to launch drone strikes on Russian territory.

A few hours later, early on Friday morning, there was similar action in the western region of Pskov, where air defence units “neutralised an unidentified object”, the local governor said.

That is the same region where a Ukrainian drone attack hit military transport aircraft earlier this week.

Pskov Governor Mikhail Vedernikov posted a video on Telegram showing fire being directed through the air. He said there had been no damage on the ground.

A Ukrainian official, meanwhile, told critics of the pace of its three-month-old counter-offensive to “shut up” on Thursday.

“Criticising the slow pace of [the] counter-offensive equals … spitting into the face of [the] Ukrainian soldier who sacrifices his life every day, moving forward and liberating one kilometre of Ukrainian soil after another,” Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba told reporters on Thursday at a meeting of EU foreign ministers in Spain.

“I would recommend all critics to shut up, come to Ukraine and try to liberate one square centimetre by themselves.”

Russia also shot down a Ukrainian drone flying towards Moscow, the country’s Defence Ministry said earlier on Thursday.

A ministry statement said the unmanned aircraft was Ukrainian.

More than 40 flights were delayed on Thursday morning at Moscow’s Vnukovo and Domodedovo airports, the Kommersant daily newspaper reported, citing a flight-tracking website. No reason was given for the delays.

On Tuesday evening and into the early hours of Wednesday, Russia was hit by the largest drone attack since the start of the war in Ukraine, according to Britain’s Ministry of Defence.

The ministry added that Russia has been hit by 25 attacks this month, which were almost certainly carried out using one-way attack uncrewed aerial vehicles.

Updated: August 31, 2023, 10:43 PM