Putin shame as Russian air force keeps dropping bombs on own cities | World | News

Vladimir Putin has been left red-faced after Russian war planes dropped almost 40 lethal glide bombs on their own cities, according to official Kremlin documents.

The massive bombs contain up to 500 kg of explosives and can cause craters 20 metres deep and six metres wide.

They have been used to deadly effect on Ukrainian cities and army frontline positions, inflicting huge damage and loss of life.

But a document compiled by city officials from Belgorod’s emergency services department records 38 incidents between April 2023 and April 2024, when Russian pilots accidentally targeted their own cities with the lethal bombs.

The bombings are believed to be caused by defective munitions and poor maintenance.

Ruslan Leviev, a military expert with the Conflict Intelligence Group, told the Washington Post: “A certain percentage of Russian bombs is defective.

“We think these accidental releases are caused by the unreliability of these kits, something that does not seem to bother the Air Force.”

A glide bomb is essentially made by adding fold-out wings and satellite navigation to old Soviet ones – supplies of which are in abundance.

Versions include the FAB 500 and the FAB 1500. A new three-tonne bomb was dropped for the first time on a village in the Kharkiv region in June.

The pop-out wings allow the bombs to glide 50 to 70 kilometres through the air at high speeds, meaning Russian jets can launch them while they are out of range of Ukrainian air defence systems.

The bombs have allowed Russia‘s army to break through Ukrainian defensive positions and make territorial gains in the east.

A recent report by the Centre for European Policy Analysis (CEPA) said they were decisive in February’s capture of the once heavily fortified key eastern town of Avdiivka.

Several incidents of Russian munitions landing in the Belgorod region have previously been reported.

On May 12, an explosion led to the partial collapse of a Belgorod apartment building, killing 17 people.

The Kremlin blamed it on a Ukrainian missile but OSINT researchers concluded it was a Russian bomb.

Researchers for the independent Russian media outlet Astra estimate that as many as 119 bombs in the last four months have been dropped in the country and also in the occupied territories of Ukraine.

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