Ukrainian Air Force spokesperson Yurii Ihnat did not claim direct responsibility for the drone incident at a Russian military facility in the western city of Engels in Saratov Oblast which led to the death of three Russian servicemen. But he did suggest 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 deeply mistaken. Therefore, as we see, such things are happening more and more often, and let’s hope that this will only benefit Ukraine,” said Ihnat.
Also on Monday, a spokesperson for South of Ukraine’s Security and Defense Forces warned of a possible retaliatory Russian strike, referencing a similar incident earlier this month in the same region.
“This reminds of the events of Dec. 5, so there may be some deja vu, some repetition of this situation, after which [the Russians] launched a massive missile strike,” the spokesperson said. “Therefore, we should be prepared for this, take it into account in our plans and do not forget to proceed to the shelter.”
Some context: Earlier this month, CCTV footage appeared to show an explosion lighting up the sky in Engels. At the time, Saratov Oblast Gov. Roman Busargin also reassured residents that no civilian infrastructure was damaged and that “information about incidents at military facilities is being checked by law enforcement agencies.”
He had acknowledged that information about “a loud bang and a burst in Engels in the early morning” was spreading on social networks and the media.
The Engels-2 airfield is nearly six kilometers from where the CCTV footage was recorded in early December.