Ukraine says strike in Russia's Kursk region took out high-tech radar system

A drone attack took out a surveillance radar near the village of Girya in Russia's Belovsky district, close to the border with Ukraine. File Photo courtesy of Ukrainian President Press Office/UPI

Sept. 29 (UPI) -- A Ukrainian attack drone carrying an explosive payload destroyed a Russian mobile anti-aircraft radar station in Russia's Kursk region, state media said Friday.

The drone attack, reportedly a special operation mounted by the Ukraine Security Service, the SBU, took out the so-called "Kasta" surveillance radar Thursday near the village of Girya in Belovsky district, close to the border with Ukraine.

The Kasta is designed to detect ultra-low-flying targets at altitudes that make them blind to most conventional radar.

"The Russians have said that it (the system) can detect even stealth aircraft, but it missed the SBU drone for some reason. The peculiarity of this radar system was the ability to identify aerial targets at extremely low altitudes," an SBU source said.

However, responsibility for the attack was denied by Presidential Office head Mykhailo Podolyak who insisted it was carried out by "Russian citizens" targeting military and critical facilities from inside Russia.

"The network is quite active and efficient. We see this in the Kursk and Belgorod regions," he told Ukrainian television.

Russia earlier claimed that its forces downed 11 Ukrainian drones overnight Thursday -- one over Kaluga region and 10 over Kursk, one of which targeted a power substation in Belovsky district, knocking out power to five localities and a hospital.

"A Ukrainian drone dropped two explosive devices on a substation in the Belovsky district. One electric transformer caught fire. Five populated areas and one hospital are without power," Kursk governor Roman Starovoit wrote on social media in the early hours of Friday.

Firefighting crews were quickly on the scene, Starovoit said, adding that repairs would get underway as soon as it was "safe to do so."

Attacks on Russian soil Russia have been on the rise in recent weeks. Russia accused Ukraine of more than 130 munitions strikes between Tuesday morning and Wednesday morning against 22 villages and towns in its Bolgorod region.

Most of the attacks were carried out with artillery and kamikaze drones, but only one person was injured.

Kyiv has for the most part stuck firmly to a policy of declining to confirm or deny any involvement in actions on Russian territory.