As Moscow's deputy minister of foreign affairs warned that the two countries are at the brink of an "open-armed war", the United States dismissed Russia's 'ludicrous" accusations that it was responsible for an alleged attack by drone on the Kremlin.
The US-Russian relations are at their lowest level since the Cold War. But in response to Wednesday's purported attack on the Kremlin, the official residence of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Moscow has drastically increased its rhetoric.
Dmitry Peskov, Kremlin spokesperson, responded to CNN by saying: "Undoubtedly, Washington dictates such decisions, goals and means, all of which are dictated to Kyiv."
We are aware that such decisions and terrorist attacks are made not in Kyiv but in Washington. Peskov stated that Kyiv has already started to implement what Washington tells it to.
Peskov didn't provide any proof to back up his claims. He also did not give additional details about the alleged incident, saying they would be revealed later.
Russia said earlier this week that Ukraine had launched a drone attack targeting the Kremlin to assassinate Russian president Vladimir Putin. They called it a "planned terrorist act." Ukraine has denied all involvement.
John Kirby is the coordinator of strategic communications for the US National Security Council. He denied Russia's ludicrous claim that the US had directed Ukraine to carry the alleged attack on and kill Putin and accused his spokesperson of lying.
I would tell you that Mr. Peskov is lying. It's a ridiculous claim. The United States were not involved in this. Kirby said, "We don't know what happened."
"But I can assure that the United States played no part in this at all."
Kirby, the US Secretary of State, said that the US did not "endorse or encourage attacks against individual leaders."
Later Thursday, Russia redoubled its bellicose language when Sergei Ryabkov, Deputy Foreign Ministry Sergei Ryabkov said to local media that the US-Russia relations are at the brink of an "open-armed war."
We are trying to stop the US-Russian relations from descending into an open conflict. Ryabkov said to Russia's Channel One on Thursday that the country was already on the brink of a precipice.
Ryabkov accused US officials as well of attempting to 'promote Washington's non-involvement in the purported attack', TASS reported.
TASS reported that he stated, 'Washington is a party to the Ukrainian conflict for a long time and aims at destroying sovereign Russia.
CNN has contacted the US State Department as well as the White House to get their comments on Ryabkov’s remarks.
Kirby had said earlier Thursday that since the beginning of Russia's conflict in Ukraine, Moscow 'has been trying to paint this as some kind of fight between the West and Russia, NATO and the United States, against Russia.
He said: 'And of course it isn't; Russia here is the aggressor.'
Worst attack for years
The Kyiv Military Administration announced Thursday that the escalating verbal war comes at the same time as Russia launches its most powerful air assault on the Ukrainian capital Kyiv since a year.
The Ukrainian air defense forces destroyed all Russian drones and missiles in Kyiv's airspace on Thursday. This prevented civilian casualties as well as damage to the infrastructure.
The regional military chief announced Thursday that at least 23 people were killed by Russian shelling in Kherson and the surrounding villages. Moscow has struck Kherson 16 times and fired over 80 shells on Pryvokzalna Square and other locations, including a train station and crossing, two shops, a factory, and a car-repair shop.
In southeastern Zaporizhzhia concerns about the safety of an Ukrainian nuclear power station currently under Russian control have been raised once again.
Ukraine's State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate alleged on Wednesday that Russia had placed weapons, explosives, and military equipment inside one of the units of a power plant. The Inspectorate claimed to have received the information a day before during its weekly meeting.
Vladimir Rogov, member of the Russian appointed military-civilian government in occupied Zaporizhzhia called the claims "a lie", adding that 'we don't use the nuclear plant as a facility for military purposes.