Ukraine pounded targets across Russia on Tuesday with at least 25 drones and seven missiles, Russia’s defence ministry said, in a sweeping attack that one local official said had left at least one refinery in the world’s second biggest oil exporter on fire.

Both sides have used drones to strike critical infrastructure, military installations and troop concentrations in their more than two-year war, with Kyiv hitting Russian refineries and energy facilities in recent months.

Russia’s defence ministry said it had downed 25 Ukrainian drones over Russian regions including Moscow, Leningrad, Belgorod, Kursk, Bryansk, Tula and Oryol. Russian local officials reported attacks on a slew of energy facilities.

“An attempt by the Kyiv regime to carry out a terrorist attack using 25 drones on objects in the territory of the Russian Federation was stopped,” the defence ministry said in a statement.

There was no immediate comment from Ukraine.

Gleb Nikitin, governor of the Nizhny Novgorod region, reported a drone attack on a fuel refinery in the Kstovo industrial zone.

“The Kstovo industrial zone, a fuel and energy complex facility, was attacked by unmanned aerial vehicles,” Nikitin said on Telegram. A refinery was on fire, he said. He did not name it.

State news agency RIA cited Russian Railways and reported that a special train that puts out fires was battling a blaze on the territory of Lukoil’s LKOH.MM refinery in Kstovo.

Lukoil did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Lukoil’s NORSI refinery, Russia’s fourth-largest refinery, can usually process about 17 million metric tons of oil per year (340,000 barrels per day).

Russian Telegram channels said a crude distillation unit at the refinery had been damaged and was on fire. A catalytic cracking unit at the plant was halted in January.


The Baza Telegram channel, which is close to Russian law enforcement, said Lukoil’s Nizhny Novgorod refinery had been hit and showed pictures of a plume of black smoke rising into the air and a major fire.

Reuters could not independently verify the report.

Russia’s defence ministry said Ukraine had fired eight RM-70 rockets and one Tochka-U missile at the Belgorod region where some Russian war correspondents said there had also been an attempt by armed groups to cross into Russian territory.

Oryol region’s Governor Andrei Klychkov, said that Ukraine had launched a drone attack at a fuel facility in the region, while RIA cited emergency services as saying one petroleum tank was on fire following the attack.

At least 17 people from high-rise buildings near the site of the drone crash were reported to have been evacuated to a temporary accommodation centre.

Officials in several regions continued to report drone attacks after the defence ministry statement. No casualties were reported in the attacks.

One drone flying towards Moscow had been downed over the Ramensky district near the capital, Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said on Telegram.