Moscow threatens to bomb Zelensky: Kremlin says ‘decision-making centres, including in Kyiv’ will be hit if Ukraine ‘keeps attacking’ Russian soil after claims a border checkpoint came under fire

  • Regional authorities claimed gunfire was heard near a Russian village today 
  • It was not immediately clear what happened as regional authorities in the Kursk region gave contradictory accounts, and deleted an earlier statement
  • Moscow threatened its forces would strike decision-making centres in Ukraine if what it called attempts to carry out sabotage in Russian territory continued
  • Authorities in four Russian regions bordering Ukraine and in Russian-controlled Crimea announced they were stepping up security measures on Monday 

The Russian military on Wednesday threatened to strike Ukraine‘s command centres in the capital Kyiv if Ukrainian troops continue to attack Russian territory.

‘We are seeing Ukrainian troops’ attempts to carry out sabotage and strike Russian territory,’ the Russian defence ministry said in a statement. ‘If such cases continue, the Russian armed forces will strike decision-making centres, including in Kyiv.’

The threat against Ukraine’s high command – including president Volodymyr Zelensky – came after Russian regional authorities claimed gunfire was heard on Wednesday near a Russian village in a western region which borders Ukraine.

It was not immediately clear what happened as authorities in the Kursk region gave contradictory accounts, and deleted an earlier statement which said a border checkpoint had come under fire.

‘An hour ago, gunfire was heard in the adjacent territory near the village of Gordeevka,’ Korenevsky district said in a fresh statement on their Telegram channel. ‘There were no casualties or damage on our side.’

Authorities in four Russian regions bordering Ukraine and in Russian-controlled Crimea announced they were stepping up security measures on Monday over what they said were ‘possible provocations’ from the Ukrainian side.

People pass by a Russian soldier in central Mariupol on April 12, 2022

Moscow, which sent thousands of troops into Ukraine on February 24 in what it calls a ‘special military operation’, has accused Ukraine of targeting its border regions, including by striking a fuel depot in the city of Belgorod earlier this month.

Kyiv has either denied or remained vague about whether it has launched attacks against Russian territory. 

Western nations have repeatedly warned of false-flag events carried out by Russian forces to justify its own military actions in Ukrainian. 

The authorities in the Belgorod, Voronezh and Bryansk regions announced on Monday they were boosting security and urged citizens to be more vigilant. 

Another region bordering Ukraine, Kursk, was the first to announce similar measures on Sunday.

‘During the special operation by Russian forces on the territory of Ukraine, the Donetsk People’s Republic and Luhansk People’s Republic, issues pertaining to anti-terrorist security have become more pressing due to possible provocations from Ukrainian nationalists,’ said Alexander Gusev, the governor of the Voronezh region, which shares a border with Ukraine’s Luhansk region.

Pictured: Flames and smoke rise from a Rosneft oil facility in Belgorod, Russia. Moscow accused Ukraine of attacking the facility earlier this month - something Kyiv denied

Pictured: Flames and smoke rise from a Rosneft oil facility in Belgorod, Russia. Moscow accused Ukraine of attacking the facility earlier this month – something Kyiv denied

Vyacheslav Gladkov, the governor of the Belgorod region, said it would implement additional security measures until April 25 to counter what he called terrorist threats. The region borders Ukraine’s Sumy, Kharkiv and Luhansk regions.

Gladkov said the population should steer clear of crowded public places, carry identity documents on them, have an evacuation plan and pay special attention to strangers and unusual vehicles near residential buildings.

The Bryansk region, which shares a border with Ukraine’s Sumy and Chernihiv regions, said it was also on alert for terrorist threats.

On Sunday, the governor of the Kursk region, Roman Starovoit, said police and military officers would set up checkpoints, less than a week after border guards allegedly came under fire in the region. 

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