Russia Contemplating Bombing Ukraine Over Civilian Death



Russia claims that Ukraine's war with Russian-backed militias yesterday spilled over into Russia itself, and that at least one civilian was killed and several injured due to an errant shell. Now, according to Russian media, some leaders in Moscow want to bomb Ukraine in retaliation.

The independent paper Kommersant reports:

The Russian Foreign Ministry announced that Moscow "considers this provocation as another act of aggression from Ukraine against sovereign territory of Russia and Russian citizens." The ministry warned: "The incident indicates an extremely dangerous escalation of tensions in the Russian-Ukrainian border and may have irreversible consequences, the responsibility for which lies on the Ukrainian side."

A source close to the Kremlin, told Kommersant that Moscow is considering "launching pinpoint retaliation" on the Ukrainian territory. According to him, the Russian side "knows exactly where the fire. "Our patience is not unlimited," said the [unnamed source]. He, however, specifies that it is not about a large-scale action, and exclusively about targeted attacks on individual positions, where is the fire on Russian territory.

A Russian government-owned publication, RIA Novosti, spoke to a deputy speaker of Russia's upper house of parliament, Yevgeniy Bushmin, who expressed a similar sentiment. "The only way to fight against this is like civilized countries do, namely the U.S. and the E.U. We should use precision weapons, as Israel does, to destroy those who fired this shell," he said.

Although the Ukrainian government denies firing into Russia, a national security spokesman acknowledged that Ukrainian forces did fire in that direction, because they were resisting a "massive artillery strike" that was facilitating "the passage of a major mercenary force into Ukrainian territory" that numbered "around 100 units of armed vehicles and trucks." The spokesman said that Russia is deliberately escalating the conflict and that the pro-Russian fighters are responsible for the killing.

Likewise, Ukraine's president said this weekend that "in the past three days a new Russian missile system has been used against the armed forces of Ukraine" and that "information has also been confirmed that Russian staff officers are taking part in military operations against Ukrainian forces." 

President Obama spoke with the U.K.'s David Cameron about the crisis, demanding that Russia rein in its fighters and support a ceasefire. The White House issued a statement saying that "so far, neither the United States nor the United Kingdom have seen progress on complying with these conditions," and that both countries may "take further coordinated measures to impose costs on Russia if it does not take immediate steps toward de-escalation."