Russian dissident fighters launch drone pilot recruitment drive

Anti-Putin Russians fighting to free Ukraine and topple the Kremlin have launched an “additional” recruitment drive for drone pilots, a day after a drone attack brought the war to the Russian capital.

“Graduates of the course will have the opportunity to practice their skills,” the dissident Freedom for Russia Legion said in a post on messaging app Telegram on Tuesday.

The post comes after drone attack on Moscow Tuesday that the Kremlin blamed on Ukraine, which denied any direct involvement.

Eight drones were involved in the attack, the Russian Defense Ministry said. Russian President Vladimir Putin said the capital’s air defenses worked normally, also suggesting the attacks had been in response to recent Russian strikes against Ukrainian infrastructure.

“Kyiv chose the path of intimidation of Russian citizens and attacks on residential buildings,” Putin said.

Freedom for Russia Legion and the Russian Volunteer Corps, which both fall under the command of the Ukrainian security forces, last week claimed responsibility for an incursion inside the Russian border region of Belgorod.

A Ukrainian official acknowledged last week that the units had carried out an operation in the area but insisted they were acting independently.