April 14 (Reuters) – Russian authorities said on Thursday that Ukrainian helicopters had targeted residential buildings and injured seven people in the Bryansk region, the latest in a series of cross-border strikes that Moscow said may trigger a retaliatory strike against kyiv. .
The governor of the Belgorod region said a village in the area was also attacked, but no one was injured.
The Ukrainian Defense Ministry, which has declined to comment on several border incidents including the attack on a fuel depot in the city of Belgorod earlier this month, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the latest development.
The Ukrainian Government’s Center for Combating Disinformation issued a statement accusing Russian intelligence services of launching “a plan to carry out terrorist acts in order to provoke anti-Ukrainian hysteria” in Russia.
The statement mentions two alleged bombings in the western Russian city of Bryansk, but not the alleged airstrike.
“On April 14, 2022, using two combat helicopters equipped with heavy offensive weapons, servicemen of the Armed Forces of Ukraine illegally entered the airspace of the Russian Federation,” the Russian investigative commission said in a statement.
“Moving at low altitude, they carried out at least six air strikes on residential buildings in the town of Klimovo,” he said. Six buildings were damaged and seven people were injured, according to the statement.
A representative of the Ministry of Health said that two people had been seriously injured, the RIA news agency reported.
The Bryansk regional authorities closed schools for fear of further attacks, the TASS news agency reported.
Some vehicles were damaged when a border post came under mortar fire from Ukraine near Klimovo on Wednesday, Russia’s FSB security service told state television.
The Russian Defense Ministry said on Wednesday that continued “sabotage and attacks” by Ukrainian forces could trigger attacks on kyiv.
“If these incidents continue, the consequence for the armed forces of the Russian Federation will be attacks on strategic centers, including in kyiv, from which the Russian military has refrained to date,” the Defense Ministry said.
The authorities of four Russian regions bordering Ukraine and of Crimea, controlled by Russia, announced on Monday that they were reinforcing security measures for what they considered “possible provocations” by the Ukrainian side.
Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, the largest attack on a European state since 1945, has driven more than 4.6 million people abroad, caused thousands of deaths and injuries, and left Russia increasingly isolated on the world stage.
The Kremlin claims it launched a “special military operation” in late February to demilitarize and “denazify” Ukraine. kyiv and its Western allies reject it as a false pretext for an unprovoked attack.
(Reporting by Conor Humphries; Editing by Guy Faulconbridge and Mark Heinrich, translated by José Muñoz in the Gdansk newsroom)