A Kamikaze drone was shot down “within earshot” of Putin’s palace today as the war inches closer to the Russian tyrant’s door.
Moscow was blitzed by a swarm of drones in a rare attack on the Russian capital after Ukraine vowed to respond to a barrage of unprecedented missile attacks in recent days.
Dozens of kamikaze drones appeared to target wealthy suburbs of Moscow where Putin’s oligarch cronies have luxury retreats.
Several were shot down over the plush district of Rublyovka and caused damage and injuries as the Ukraine war appeared to be coming to Putin’s own backyard.
And footage appeared to show one of the drones exploding in a huge mushroom cloud near Usovo village – close to Putin’s estate Novo-Ogaryovo.
According to Pravda, a drone was downed in the village of Razdory – just six miles from the Russian leader’s luxury palace.
A local resident said it “would be in earshot of the explosion”.
Journalist Farida Rustamova said the drone was shot down just “a ten-minute drive” from the residence in Usovo.
“This is part of Rublyovka where state-owned cottages and private houses of officials and businessmen are located,” she said.
“Putin’s Novo-Ogaryovo residence (in the village of Usovo) is a 10-minute drive away.”
A Pantsir-S1 air defence missile system was reportedly installed near Putin’s residence earlier this year amid fears of drone attacks from Ukraine.
It’s not clear if Putin was at his estate when the drone attack hit.
Other drone strikes targeted Ilyinskoye, Timoshkino, Romashkovo and Greenfield, according to Alexander Khinstein, a lawmaker from Putin’s United Russia political faction.
Elsewhere in the capital, video showed drones flying overhead before being shot down in plumes of black smoke.
Residents said they heard loud bangs followed by the smell of petrol.
Blocks of flats and other tall buildings had windows blown out as locals scattered in panic as FSB intelligence investigators rushed to multiple sites.
Russian lawmaker Maxim Ivanov branded the barrage of drones as the worst attack on Moscow since World War Two.
“You will either defeat the enemy as a single fist with our Motherland, or the indelible shame of cowardice, collaboration and betrayal will engulf your family,” he said.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said it was “quite clear that we are talking about the Kyiv regime’s response to our very effective strikes on one of the decision-making centres”.
And Russia’s Defence Ministry blasted Kyiv for the “terrorist attack” on the city.
It said five drones were shot down and the systems of three others were jammed – causing them to veer off course.
“The Kyiv regime launched a terrorist attack with unmanned aerial vehicles on facilities in the city of Moscow,” it said.
“Eight aircraft-type unmanned aerial vehicles were involved in the attack. All enemy drones were hit.”
According to local reports, at least 10 drones were shot down over the Istra, Krasnogorsk and Odintsovo districts.
Russia’s Investigative Committee confirmed a number of drones were shot down by air defences as they approached Moscow.
Andrei Vorobyov, governor of the Moscow region, said: “Residents of some areas of the Moscow region could hear the sounds of explosions.
“This is our air defences. On approaching Moscow, several drones were shot down. I ask people to remain calm.”
Moscow’s mayor Sergei Sobyanin said the onslaught left “minor damage to several buildings”.
But Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin said he was “deeply outraged” by Putin’s troops doing “f**k all” to stop the barrage of drones reaching the Russian capital.
The attacks come after Ukraine’s military intelligence chief vowed to respond swiftly to the drone and missile attacks on Kyiv in recent days.
Kyrylo Budanov said: “All those who tried to intimidate us, dreaming that this would have some effect, you will regret it very soon.
“Our answer will not be long in coming. Soon everyone will see everything.”
A Ukrainian presidential aide denied Kyiv was directly involved in the drone strikes – but said Ukraine predicted an increase in such attacks.
Mykhailo Podolyak told the Breakfast Show YouTube channel: “Of course, we are pleased to watch and predict an increase in the number of attacks.
“But of course, we have nothing directly to do with this.”
Speculation has grown that they could be another Putin “false flag” ruse to discredit his enemy.
Reports suggested the attacks could have come from the Kaluga region in Russia.
It marks the second attack on Moscow after two drones hit the Kremlin earlier this month in what was branded an assassination attempt on Putin.