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Russia: The American Mastermind Behind the Kremlin Drone Attack

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Moscow on Thursday accused the United States of orchestrating a drone attack on the Kremlin, which Washington denied, and said Ukrainian sabotage within Russia’s borders had reached “unprecedented momentum”.

Moscow said President Vladimir Putin was working from the Kremlin the day after the attack, which it said was a Ukrainian attempt to kill him.

“Decisions on such attacks are not taken in Kiev, but in Washington,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

“Kiev only does what is asked of it,” he said. “Washington must clearly understand that we know this.”

Ukraine denied responsibility, with President Volodymyr Zelensky saying “we are not attacking Moscow or Putin”.

The United States also denied any involvement.

“Peskov is lying there, plain and simple,” John Kirby, a spokesman for the White House National Security Council, said on MSNBC.

During its more than year-long offensive in Ukraine, Moscow has asserted that Kiev takes orders from the United States – accusing the West of leading a proxy war against Russia.

Josep Borrell, another ally of Ukraine, warned Moscow “not to use this alleged attack as an excuse to continue escalating the war.”

‘Unprecedented’ sabotage

The Kremlin attack came as Russia prepares to mark one of its main holidays on May 9 – the celebration of the Soviet victory over the Nazis – with a traditional military parade in Red Square.

This came after five days of apparently disruptive attacks, including trains derailed by explosions and wildfires, in Crimea.

On Thursday, the Krasnodar and Rostov regions in southern Russia, both near Ukraine, reported drone strikes that caused fires.

And early Thursday evening, the authorities installed by Russia in Crimea, which Russia annexed in 2014, said its forces had shot down a drone near an air base in the region.

The Kremlin insisted that the May 9 Moscow parade would go ahead, despite the attacks in the border regions and in the heart of Russian power, but under “enhanced” security.

On Thursday, Russian television showed a performance by Putin in the Kremlin for the first time since the drone attack.

A spokesman for the Russian president said he does not intend to “any speech on this subject”.

But Moscow admitted that the country was facing an “unprecedented” wave of vandalism.

Russia has opened a terrorist investigation into the Moscow attack.

No official photos of the attack were released. Unverified photos on social media showed a drone striking the Senate building in the Kremlin.

Peskov said two “brass plates” on the dome of the 18th-century building were damaged.

“They have been or will be replaced, everything will be like new. No other damage.”

“criminal action”

When Moscow accused the United States of planning the Kremlin attack, Zelensky of Ukraine arrived on a surprise visit to The Hague.

He visited the International Criminal Court, which in March issued an arrest warrant for Putin over allegations of illegal deportation of Ukrainian children.

“We all want to see a different Vladimir here,” Zelensky said, referring to the Russian president, who bears the same name, and who he believes “deserves to be punished for his criminal actions here, in the capital of international law.”

He said a special tribunal should be set up to hold Russia accountable for its “crime of aggression”.

“There must be responsibility for this crime. This can only be enforced by the court,” Zelensky told diplomats and court officials.

The Netherlands has pledged financial and military support to Ukraine since Russia launched its offensive in February 2022.

Zelensky, who also met Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, said Ukraine was “realistic” that it would not be able to join NATO while it was still fighting Russia.

“But we want a very clear message that we will participate in NATO after the war,” he said.

Putin has used Ukraine’s desire to join the alliance to justify his attack.

intense hits

On the day of the alleged Kremlin attack, Ukraine said Russia bombed the southern Kherson region, and one of the raids hit a supermarket.

Officials said at least 23 people were killed and 46 wounded in the strikes.

After the Kremlin accused Kiev of trying to kill Putin, Ukrainian authorities said they faced a new wave of strikes overnight.

Ukraine’s Air Force said Thursday that Russia had launched 24 attack drones overnight, of which it shot down 18. The authorities said there were no injuries.

“The air defense forces destroyed all the enemy’s missiles and drones over Kiev,” said Sergey Popko, head of the Kiev city military administration.

Bubko said this was the third day of attempted strikes on Kiev in May.

“Our city has not seen such an intensity of strikes since the beginning of this year,” he said.

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