The Russian Defense Ministry on Wednesday said that air defenses downed 31 Ukrainian drones over three Russian oblasts that border Ukraine, Belgorod, Bryansk, and Kursk.
According to AP, the incident appeared to be Ukraine’s single largest cross-border drone attack on Russian territory since Russia launched its invasion last year. The governor of Belgorod also reported heavy shelling, saying a total of 80 munitions were fired at the oblast.
Russia has made clear that it believes Ukrainian drone attacks on Russian territory would not be possible without help from the US and NATO. The Economist recently reported that Ukrainian drone attacks on Russia use intelligence “often from Western partners.”
Ukraine has stepped up its attacks on the Russian mainland and Crimea as its counteroffensive has stalled. Also on Wednesday, Russia said it stopped a Ukrainian landing team from entering Crimea.
“In the northwest section of the Black Sea, planes of Russia’s Aerospace Forces prevented a Ukrainian assault force, which headed towards Cape Tarhankut using a high-speed boat and three water scooters, from infiltrating the territory of Crimea,” the Russian Defense Ministry said.