U.S. thinks Ukraine was behind Kremlin drone attack - NYT

  • World
  • Thursday, 25 May 2023

The Russian flag flies on the dome of the Kremlin Senate building behind Spasskaya Tower, in central Moscow, Russia, May 4, 2023. REUTERS/Stringer

MOSCOW (Reuters) -United States intelligence agencies believe that a drone attack on the Kremlin this month was likely orchestrated by Ukrainian spies or military intelligence, the New York Times said.

The newspaper said the attack appeared to be part of a series of covert operations that have made officials in the United States — Ukraine’s biggest supplier of military equipment — uncomfortable.

The U.S. assessment was based on intercepted Russian and Ukrainian communications, the paper said.

The United States intercepted Ukrainian conversations in which officials said they believed their country was responsible for the attack, and also tapped into Russian communications which indicated it was not some sort of false-flag operation by Russia, it added.

"We immediately said that the Kyiv regime was behind this," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said when asked about the report.

"In the end, it doesn't make much difference which of the units of the Kyiv regime was behind this. The Kyiv regime was behind this, we know this, we are aware of it, and we shall proceed from this as we go forward."

U.S. officials said they do not believe Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy signs off on all covert operation, the paper said. It is unclear to what extent he is aware of such operations in advance, the officials were quoted as saying.

Russia accused Ukraine of trying to kill Russian President Vladimir Putin in the attack. Zelenskiy promptly denied any Ukrainian involvement.

The Kremlin has also said the United States was behind the drone attack, a view Washington dismissed as ridiculous.

(Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)

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