Ukraine denied having any relationship with the Russian dissident brigades that carried out an operation in Belgorod

Mikhaylo Podolyak, adviser to Zelensky (Reuters) (KEMAL ASLAN /)

Ukraine on Monday denied involvement in an alleged incursion into Russian territory, after Moscow said it was fighting a group of saboteurs who had crossed into Russia’s Belgorod border region.

Ukraine is watching the events in the Russian Belgorod region with interest and studies the situation, but has nothing to do with it”, declared Ukrainian presidential adviser Mikhaylo Podolyak.

Ukraine has previously denied responsibility for several sabotage attacks on Russian soil.

On Monday, Russia claimed that a group of saboteurs had crossed from Ukraine into the Belgorod region65 kilometers from the border, and that Russian troops and agents were trying to “eliminate” them.

Instead, Podolyak suggested that those responsible could be Russian “guerrilla groups”. “The only political driving force in a totalitarian country with tight screws is always an armed guerrilla movement,” he said. “As you know, tanks are sold in any Russian military store, and underground guerrilla groups are made up of Russian citizens.”

Russia has said the raid was engineered by Ukraine to “divert attention from Bakhmut”, after Moscow claimed to have captured the city over the weekend, but Kiev denied it. The raid came before a widely expected counteroffensive by kyiv.

Two groups of Russian opponents

A representative of the Ukrainian Military Intelligence Directorate stated that two groups of Russian volunteers fighting Moscow troops alongside the Ukrainian army are behind the attacks in recent hours against the Russian region of Belgorod.

These two formations of volunteers, who call themselves “Russian Volunteer Corps” and “Freedom for Russia Legion”, They had previously assured on their respective Telegram channels that they were carrying out combat actions in the Russian border regions with Ukraine of Belgorod and Briansk.

According to the representative of the Ukrainian military intelligence Andrii Yusov, the actions in Belgorod have been executed only by the members of these two groups of volunteers made up of Russian citizens opposed to President Vladimir Putin.

“Yes, today the Russian Volunteer Corps and the Freedom for Russia Legion, consisting of citizens of the Russian Federation, they have started an operation to liberate these territories from the so-called Putin regime and push back the enemy to create a certain security zone to protect the Ukrainian civilian population”Yusov said.

Yusov assured that the objective of these two groups is to clear the territory located next to the border with Ukraine to create “a security zone” that protects Ukrainian civilians from the bombardments that are launched from the Russian territory that is attached to the line. border.

The governor of Belgorod said today that two people were killed and a third wounded as a result of a massive attack in that Russian region bordering Ukraine.

One of the groups of Russian volunteers who have claimed combat actions within the Russian Federation It has called on the population of Belgorod and other Russian border regions with Ukraine to “stay at home, do not resist and do not panic.”

“We are not your enemies. Unlike Putin’s zombies, we do not harm civilians and we do not use them for our purposes”, says the message published on Telegram by the so-called “Freedom for Russia Legion”, whose channel has about 160,000 followers on that network. social.

Members of the Russian Freedom Legion also claimed responsibility for the attack. In one video, a disguised spokesman, surrounded by gunmen in fatigues, said: “Russia will be free!” The group’s Telegram channel said two villages in the Belgorod region had been attacked.

(With information from AFP and EFE)

Keep reading:

The Ukrainian Army set out to create a tactical encirclement over the Russian forces in Bakhmut

Ukraine said it needs more air defense against Russian missiles