On March 16, Russia denounced new incursions from Ukraine and the death of two people in an attack against a border region, coinciding with the second day of a presidential election designed to keep Vladimir Putin in power.

The elections, which will conclude on Sunday and in which Putin is heading for a triumphant re-election, were marred by an uptick in deadly Ukrainian bombings and a series of incursions into Russia carried out by pro-Ukrainian groups.
The Russian Ministry of Defense indicated that “attacks were repelled and attempts to infiltrate the territory of the Russian Federation by Ukrainian sabotage and reconnaissance groups were thwarted.”

The same source previously said it shot down missiles, rockets and drones in the border regions of Belgorod and Kursk, targeted during the week by attacks from neighboring Ukraine.

Putin, who cast his vote online, had promised a tough response to the assaults on Friday and accused Kiev of trying to “disrupt” his race for another six-year term.

On Saturday, the governor of the Belgorod region said air defense systems shot down eight Ukrainian missiles, but two residents were killed and two people were wounded.

“A man was driving a truck when he was hit by a projectile,” wrote Viacheslav Gladkov on social networks.

“Another woman died in a parking lot where she and her son went to feed dogs. Doctors are fighting for her son’s life,” he added.

Unverified images of the attack circulating on social media show a large explosion that destroyed a car.

The governor later reported that schools and shopping centers in the city of Belgorod and other districts in the region will remain closed in the coming days “given the current situation.”

Putin vowed revenge

Occupation authorities in the Kherson region of southern Ukraine said a Ukrainian drone strike killed one person and injured four others.

Putin stated on Friday that the attacks by Ukrainian forces “will not go unpunished.”

The 71-year-old president has been in power in Russia since the last day of 1999 and is willing to extend his control over the country until 2030.

If he completes another term in the Kremlin, he would be the longest Russian leader since Catherine the Great, who ruled for 34 years in the late 18th century.

Inessa Rozhkova, 87, cast her vote from her home in the city of Sergei Posad, near Moscow, hoping that the elections will end the conflict with Ukraine.

“Can you imagine how many people have died? And now our border towns are suffering,” said.

At a nearby polling station, Elena Kirsanova, 68, came with her husband to vote for Putin. “They try to scare us, but this is not a nation that lets itself be intimidated,” declared to AFP.

Putin is running unopposed, after the exclusion of two candidates opposed to the conflict in Ukraine and approximately a month after the death of his main opponent, Alexei Navalny, in an Arctic prison under unexplained circumstances.

The Kremlin presented the elections as an opportunity for Russians to show their support for the military campaign in Ukraine, where voting is also being held in the occupied territories.

However, the first day of voting was marred by acts of vandalism at polling stations, with a wave of arrests of Russians accused of pouring dye into the ballot boxes or setting fires.
State media showed soldiers and election officials collecting votes from elderly residents in Avdiivka, a town destroyed by months of fighting before being captured by Russian forces last month.

On Saturday, two Russian women were arrested – one in the city of Yekaterinburg (center) and another in Kaliningrad (west) – accused of pouring green ink, which resembled zelyonka, a surgical antiseptic used to spray Russian opponents, on the ballots. among them Navalni.

For its part, the ruling United Russia party, which unconditionally supports Putin, indicated that it was suffering a large-scale computer attack against its website.

The Federal Security Service of Russia (FSB) also announced a series of arrests of Russians who they say were aiding Ukrainian forces or planning to carry out acts of sabotage at military and transportation facilities.

In recent weeks, Ukrainian attacks in Russia have reached far beyond the border regions, targeting oil facilities located in the interior of the territory.

The governor of the Samara region, about 1,000 kilometers from the border with Ukraine, said Saturday that drones attacked two oil refineries, causing a fire in one of them.

A defense source in kyiv told AFP that the attack was planned by the Ukrainian security services (SBU) as part of a “strategy to disrupt Russia’s economic potential.”

“Each such defeat reduces the flow of petrodollars that fuels Russia’s war economy”he claimed.

Source: https://www.noticiascaracol.com/mundo/rusia-denuncia-bombardeos-ucranianos-en-plenas-elecciones-presidenciales-reportan-2-muertos-cb20

Leave a Reply