LONDON (Reuters) – Russia’s Defense Ministry on Monday denied responsibility for a missile that hit a residential building in Kiev over the weekend, saying it was likely caused by a failure in Ukraine’s air defense system.
Missiles hit the Ukrainian capital Kiev for the first time in weeks on Sunday. Ukraine said an apartment block and a site next to a kindergarten were hit, with US President Joe Biden saying the attacks were further evidence of Russia’s “barbarism” in its offensive against Ukraine. .
In a statement, the Russian Defense Ministry said on Monday it fired four missiles that hit their target, a weapons factory in Kiev.
However, the ministry said it believed that a Ukrainian Buk missile defense system had mistakenly intercepted an S-300 air defense missile fired by Ukraine, which then “fell into a residential building”.
“The regime in Kiev tried to intercept high-precision Russian missiles with anti-aircraft weapons stationed in the city,” the Defense Ministry said.
Instead, “due to the lack of linkage of air defense systems and radio equipment launchers located in urban areas, two S-300 anti-aircraft missiles were shot down in the air by Ukrainian Buks. Presumably, one of the anti-aircraft missiles landed on a residential building.”
Moscow has repeatedly denied attacking civilian areas in what it calls a special military operation, despite widespread footage of destroyed residential buildings and a United Nations (UN) estimate that at least 4,731 civilians have been killed since the Russian invasion on 24 December. of February.