A view shows the damaged facade of an office building in the Moscow City following a reported Ukrainian drone attack in Moscow, on July 30, 2023. Image Credit: REUTERS

Moscow: Ukrainian drones damaged two office tower buildings in Moscow and triggered the temporary closure of one of the city’s airports, the Russian Defence Ministry said.

Two of the unmanned aircraft were downed by electronic jamming, while a third drone was shot down, the ministry said.

One person was injured and Vnukovo airport later reopened, Tass reported. Ukraine hasn’t commented.

Image Credit: AP

The area, several miles from the Kremlin, is known for its modern high-rise towers and one of the buildings damaged was home to three Russian government ministries as well as residential apartments, Russian media reported.

The fact that hostile drones have begun reaching the heart of the Russian capital in recent months, even if they do not inflict serious damage, is uncomfortable for the authorities who have told the public that Russia is in full control of what they call its “special military operation” against Ukraine.

A young woman who gave her name only as Liya described the Moscow incident. “My friends and I rented an apartment to come here and unwind, and at some point, we heard an explosion and it was like a wave, everyone jumped,” she told Reuters.

“And then there was a lot of smoke and you couldn’t see anything. From above, you could see fire.” Some glass panels in one high-rise building were blown out and glass and debris littered part of the pavement below, according to a Reuters reporter on the scene, which had been cordoned off by police and emergency services.

Two drones reached the Kremlin in May in the most high-profile incident of its kind.

The incident followed what Russia said was a similar Ukrainian attempt to attack Moscow with two drones last Monday, one of which was brought down close to the headquarters of the defence ministry. It spoke at the time of taking harsh retaliatory measures against Ukraine.

Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Mykhailo Fedorov said after Monday’s attempted attack that there would be more drone strikes. There was no immediate reaction from Kyiv to the latest incident.

Russia’s military said it also downed 25 drones over Crimea. There were no reports of injuries or damage.

Fighting has been intensifying in southern Ukraine - seven weeks after Kyiv launched attacks against forces across the frontline. Russia’s Defence Ministry said its forces shot down a series of Ukrainian missiles and drones, while hitting a weapons depot near Zaporizhzhia. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky visited special forces on the front in the eastern Donetsk region, according to a Telegram post.