Ukraine is now accusing Russia of using spy balloons as part of its ongoing war — saying it shot down six over the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv.
“Aerial targets were detected in the sky over the Kyiv region. As a result air defense kicked into action,” the Kyiv Regional Military Administration reported on Telegram. “Keep calm and stay in shelters!”
Although the message did not specify when the balloons were shot down, air alerts were issued in Kyiv on Wednesday.
The apparent use of balloons comes on top of the US also shooting down several unusual objects over American skies, including a balloon the size of three buses that reportedly had been tracked from China.
Kyiv’s military said the balloons it shot down appeared to be carrying corner reflectors and reconnaissance equipment.
“According to information that is now being clarified, these were balloons that move in the air under the propulsion of wind,” the military administration wrote.
“The purpose of launching the balloons was possibly to detect and exhaust our air defenses.”
Shortly before Wednesday’s announcement, Ukrainian air force spokesperson Yuriy Ihnat said Russia could be using balloons in a new drive to preserve its stocks of reconnaissance drones.
“Reconnaissance drones like the Orlan-10 are now being used more sparingly (by Russia), and they thought ‘Why don’t we use these balloons?’ So they are using them,” Ihnat told Ukrainian television.
It came a day after Romania and Moldova — both of which border Ukraine — reported mysterious weather balloon-like objects traversing their skies.
Romania’s defense ministry said it deployed two jets that are under NATO command, but returned to base without spotting any. The incident in Moldova triggered widespread travel disruption and brief panic when authorities temporarily closed the country’s airspace.
Russia did not immediately comment on the reports of balloons over Kyiv.
With Post wires
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