Russia dropped FAB-250 bomb on its own territory Belgorod

Russia has accidentally bombed its own territory close to the Ukrainian border while carrying out strikes on the city of Kharkiv, according to reports, in what appears to be the latest incident of Moscow inadvertently targeting its own population.

Open-source intelligence accounts and Ukraine-aligned media reported on Saturday that a Russian jet carrying out guided glide-bomb strikes on the northeastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv mistakenly dropped munitions on Belgorod.

The region, which sits on the border with northeast Ukraine, has borne the brunt of much of the war’s spillover into internationally-recognized Russian territory.

Russia has previously admitted to bombing its own territory and parts of eastern Ukraine under its control.

Anton Gerashchenko, a former adviser to Ukraine’s interior ministry, said a guided bomb “fell right on a residential sector and exploded.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Saturday that Russia had dropped “almost 70 guided aerial bombs against our border communities and positions at the front” in the previous day.

Vyacheslav Gladkov, the governor of the Belgorod region, said on Saturday that an explosion in the city of Belgorod had injured five people. There were no fatalities, he said, adding that 30 homes and 10 cars were damaged, without offering any further information about the source of the blast.

Russian glide-bombs have rained down on Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second-largest city, in recent months. Across the front line, Moscow has used adapted Soviet-era bombs, fitting the munitions with guidance kits and wings, to strike targets.

Russian jets fire the precision-guided bombs out of the range of Kyiv’s air defenses, and they glide towards their target, often with devastating effect. Ukrainian officials in Kharkiv have reported several strikes, including those using guided aerial bombs, in recent days.

Last month, footage appeared to show a 1,500-kilogram (3,300-pound) converted bomb landing on a Russian-controlled village in Ukraine’s eastern Donetsk region, although the munition did not detonate. Separately in April, Russian independent media outlet Astra reported that Moscow had mistakenly dropped a Kh-59 missile on a village in the Belgorod region.

In January, Russia bombed the village of Petropavlovka, in the country’s Voronezh region, by mistake. The defense ministry said at the time that there had been an “abnormal discharge of aircraft ammunition” over the village, state media reported. A few days later, a Moscow-installed official said one of its jets had accidentally dropped a FAB-250 bomb on Rubizhne, in Ukraine’s annexed Luhansk region.

In April 2023, a Russian warplane accidentally bombed Belgorod, causing a huge crater and a large explosion in the city.

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