Imposing explosion in the city of Engels, Russia 1:01
Three Russian servicemen were killed Monday after a Ukrainian drone was shot down by air defenses as it approached a military airfield in Saratov Oblast, deep in Russian territory, according to Russian state news agencies. , who cited the Ministry of Defense.
The incident took place in the western port city of Engels, more than 800 kilometers southeast of Moscow, located on the Volga River.
It is the second such attempted attack on the city, which is home to the Engels-2 military airfield, a strategic bomber airbase, this month.
Law enforcement agencies are now investigating the incident at the airfield, Saratov Oblast Governor Roman Busargin said Monday.
The comments, posted on his official Telegram channel, came after reports of an explosion in the city circulated.
Busargin added that "there were no emergencies in the city's residential areas," and that no civilian infrastructure was damaged.
He also extended his condolences to the families of the military and said that the government will provide assistance.
CNN has not been able to independently verify Russian reports that the drone was deliberately shot down and missed its intended target.
Russia says it is ready to resume gas supplies to Europe through the Yamal-Europe pipeline
Ukrainian drones attacked Russian airbases 0:49
In comments Monday, Ukrainian Air Force spokesman Yurii Ihnat did not claim direct responsibility for the drone attack, but suggested the attack was the "consequence of what Russia is doing."
“If the Russians thought that the war would not affect anyone in the deep rear (of Russia) or anywhere else, they were sorely mistaken.
Therefore, as we see, these things are happening more and more frequently, and hopefully this will only benefit Ukraine,” Ihnat said.
Also on Monday, a spokesman for the South Ukrainian Defense and Security Forces warned of a possible retaliatory Russian attack, citing a similar incident earlier this month in the same region.
"This is reminiscent of the events of December 5, so there may be déjà vu, a repeat of this situation, after which [the Russians] launched a massive missile attack," the spokesperson said.
Therefore, we must be prepared for it."
A satellite image of Engels Air Base in Saratov, Russia, photographed on December 4.
(Credit: Maxar Technologies/Reuters)
Earlier this month, CCTV footage appeared to show an explosion lighting up the sky at Engels.
At the time, Governor Busargin also assured residents that no civilian infrastructure was damaged and that "information about incidents at military installations are being verified by law enforcement agencies."
He had acknowledged that information was being disseminated on social networks and the media about "a loud noise and an explosion in Engels at dawn."
The Engels-2 airfield is almost 6 kilometers from where the CCTV footage was recorded in early December.