Russia says it repelled attempted Ukrainian cross-border incursion on Thursday

By Thomson Reuters Mar 15, 2024 | 3:31 AM

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia’s defence ministry said on Friday that its forces had thwarted a Ukrainian attempt to launch a cross-border attack on Russia’s Belgorod region on Thursday.

In a statement, the ministry said that Ukraine had used helicopters to land up to 30 soldiers close to the border village of Kozinka. It said they were repelled by Russian soldiers and border guards.

Ukrainian officials said earlier on Friday that two Russian border provinces, Belgorod and the neighbouring Kursk region, were under attack by anti-Kremlin Russian armed groups based in Ukraine.

Belgorod regional governor Vyacheslav Gladkov said in a statement on the Telegram messaging app that two people and had killed and “very serious damage” inflicted on Kozinka village.

Russia on Friday began voting in a three day presidential election in which President Vladimir Putin is sure to win his latest six year term in office.

Belgorod region, a frontier province that has come under regular attack from Ukraine since 2022, was previously the site of a series of incursions by Kyiv’s forces in 2023.

In May 2023, Ukrainian troops briefly took control of an area close to the border, including the village of Kozinka.

(Reporting by Reuters; Writing by Felix Light; Editing by Andrew Osborn/Guy Faulconbridge)