Russia has accused Ukraine of an attempted assassination of president Vladimir Putin, claiming it shot down two drones at the Kremlin.

Residents of Moscow had reported hearing two explosions near to the fortified complex, which serves as the official residence of the president.

On Wednesday the Russian government stated that two drones had attempted to strike in the capital. It's not thought Mr Putin was in the building at the time.

State outlet RIA said: "Last night, the Kiev regime attempted a drone strike against the residence of the President of the Russian Federation at the Kremlin.

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Two unmanned aerial vehicles targeted the Kremlin. Timely action by the military and special services involving radar systems enabled them to disable the devices. They crashed in the Kremlin grounds, scattering fragments without causing any casualties or damage.

"We view these actions as a planned terrorist attack and an assassination attempt targeting the President, carried out ahead of Victory Day and the May 9 Parade, where foreign guests are expected to be present, among others."

A Twitter user posted footage from what appears to be military news outlet Zvezda showing pale smoke rising from the citadel.

Ukrainian outlet Ukrainska Pravda also posted video footage purporting to be of the moment the drone hit.

The Kremlin added that Mr Putin was safe and continued to work with his schedule, while it said Russia retains the right to respond “when and where it sees fit”.

Ukrainian authorities did not immediately comment.

Victory Day commemorates the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany, which surrendered to the Allies on May 9 (Russian time) 1945.

Around 27 million citizens of the USSR died in what is known as the Great Patriotic War, by far the most casualties of any nation in World War II.

Under Mr Putin's regime the day is marked by a military parade in Red Square, with the leader often using it to send messages of intent.