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Video: Russia blames US for alleged assassination attempt on Putin

Russia's President Vladimir Putin. (Alexei Nikolsky/Russian Presidential Press and Information Office/TASS/Abaca Press/TNS)
May 04, 2023

On Thursday, Russia blamed the United States for the alleged assassination attempt on President Vladimir Putin, claiming that the Biden administration was behind the “terrorist act.”

Dmitri S. Peskov, a spokesman for Putin, told reporters that the U.S. was responsible for the drone attack on the Kremlin this week, according to the New York Times.

“We know well that the decisions about such actions and such terrorist acts are made not in Kyiv, but in Washington,” Peskov said. “Kyiv then does what it’s told.”

READ MORE: US Speaker stresses support for Kyiv, tells Russian reporter Moscow must pull out of Ukraine

“Washington must clearly understand that we know it, he added.

White House spokesman John Kirby pushed back on Peskov’s assertions during an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

“Peskov is just lying there, pure and simple,” Kirby said. “I can assure you that there was no involvement by the United States in this. Whatever it was, it didn’t involve us.”

Russian officials initially claimed Ukraine tried to assassinate Putin with two drones in the middle of the night on Wednesday. Video of the alleged assassination attempt circulated on Twitter.

Serhii Nykyforov, spokesman for Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, said Ukraine has “no information about the so-called overnight attack on the Kremlin.”

“We have no information about the so-called overnight attack on the Kremlin. However, as President Zelenskyy has said on numerous occasions, Ukraine is deploying all of its forces and capabilities to liberate its own territories, rather than attack the territories of another country,” Nykyforov said in a comment to Ukrainska Pravda newspaper.

“Some of the word choices of the terrorist state are particularly surprising. A terrorist attack is what happened in Dnipro and Uman, where entire sections of residential buildings collapsed, or the missile that targeted people at the Kramatorsk rail station, or one of countless other tragedies,” Nykyforov continued. “What happened in Moscow is obviously an escalation ahead of 9 May [when Russia celebrates Victory Day, a holiday commemorating the 1945 victory over Nazism – ed.]. That’s the approach we expect of our adversaries.”

This was a breaking news story. The details were periodically updated as more information became available.