Russian air defense shoots down several drones in the Moscow region

Several drones were intercepted in the Moscow region as well as in the Kaluga region, southwest of the Russian capital, Russian media and authorities reported on Tuesday. Moscow condemns an “act of terror” by Kiev. Follow hour by hour the latest events in Ukraine and Russia.

8:00 am: Five Ukrainian drones neutralized near Moscow and its region, according to the Russian army

Five Ukrainian drones were neutralized in the morning near Moscow and its region, the Russian Defense Ministry said, stressing that the attack had not caused any casualties or damage.

“This morning, an attempt by the Kiev regime to carry out a terrorist act was thwarted with five drones” targeting locations in the Moscow region and on the outskirts of the Russian capital, the ministry said in a statement. Four drones were destroyed by anti-aircraft defenses near Moscow, and the fifth was neutralized with “electronic warfare means” in its region.

7:37 am: Russia condemns an “act of terrorism” by Kiev after a drone strike on its territory

Russia has condemned an “act of terrorism” by the Kiev regime after a drone strike near Moscow disrupted operations at Vnukovo International Airport.

The information no longer seems to shock anyone, but Ukrainian drones were shot down this morning near Moscow. Vnukovo airport has been temporarily closed. One was shot down over “Patriote Park”, the other is suspected of having Roublëvka as its destination.

— Paul Gogo (@Paugog) July 4, 2023

“An attempt by the Kyiv regime to attack an area where civilian infrastructure facilities are located, including an airport that, by the way, receives international flights, is a new act of terrorism,” the official said on Telegram. Spokesperson for Russian diplomacy, Maria Zakharova.

07:30: Ukrainian forces make difficult progress in Zaporizhia region

The advance of the Ukrainian soldiers is slow and difficult, especially on the south-eastern front, in the region of Zaporizhia. Gwendoline Debono, special correspondent for France 24, went to this axis of progression, where the Russian forces give little respite to the artillerymen engaged in the counteroffensive.

02:12 A soldier participating in the Ukrainian counter-offensive in the Zaporizhia region. © France 24 5:45: several drones intercepted in the Moscow region

Several drones were shot down near Moscow, the mayor of the Russian capital, Sergei Sobyanin, said, condemning a new “Ukrainian” attack.

“Today another attempt to attack from Ukrainian drones” took place at the end of Moscow and in its region, Sergei Sobyanin wrote on Telegram. “All the attacks were repelled by the anti-aircraft defense, all the detected drones were neutralized”, he assured, without specifying their number, but emphasized that no casualties were to be regretted.

According to the emergency services quoted by the public news agency RIA Novosti, two planes in particular were shot down near the village of Valouïevo, located at the edge of Moscow. Another drone was neutralized near Kubinka, in the Moscow region, according to the same source.

These incidents briefly disrupted operations at Moscow’s Vnukovo airport, located about forty kilometers from Kubinka, with several flights diverted to other airports, according to the Russian Air Transport Agency (Rosaviatsia).

Russian anti-aircraft defenses also shot down a drone in the Kaluga region southwest of Moscow, the official TASS news agency reported.

Moscow and its region, located more than 500 km from the Ukrainian border, have only rarely been the target of drone attacks since the start of the offensive in Ukraine in February 2022, although this type of attack has multiplied elsewhere in Russia.

01:02: American journalist Evan Gershkovich, detained in Russia, is in “good health”

The US ambassador to Russia received permission on Monday to visit the American journalist Evan Gershkovich in prison, who was arrested at the end of March and who, according to her, is “in good health”.

Lynne Tracy went to Moscow’s Lefortovo prison, the US State Department said. This is only their second meeting since the arrest of the journalist during a report in Yekaterinburg (in the Urals) on March 29.

Russian authorities have repeatedly refused to grant a consular visit to Evan Gershkovich, targeted by allegations of “espionage”, which he denies.

“Ambassador Tracy has communicated that Evan Gershkovich is in good health and remains strong despite the circumstances,” a State Department spokesman said.

Evan Gershkovich, a Wall Street Journal reporter who worked for AFP, is the first foreign journalist to be arrested in Russia for espionage since the fall of the Soviet Union.

July 3 essential

In The Hague in the Netherlands, a new international prosecutor’s office to investigate the crime of aggression in connection with the Russian invasion of Ukraine has begun its work.

On the ground, the Ukrainian army claims to have retaken 37 square kilometers from Russian forces in the east and south of the country in a week, as part of its counter-offensive in those areas. “Progress” hailed by President Zelensky, who acknowledges “difficult” struggles.

AFP and Reuters

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