A senior Russian draft officer and former submarine commander who Kyiv accuses of being behind missile attacks on Ukraine has been shot and killed in southern Russia, authorities said late Monday.
Captain Stanislav Rzhitsky, 42, served as deputy head of the Krasnodar city administration’s mobilization department when he was reported as having been gunned down during a morning run.
Law enforcement authorities have launched a murder investigation after Rzhitsky’s body was discovered on a city street with gunshot wounds.
The head of Russia’s Investigative Committee, Alexander Bastrykin, ordered his regional subordinate to report back on the results of the investigation.
Ukraine’s intelligence agency identified Rzhitsky as the former commander of the Krasnodar attack submarine, saying he was “involved” in deadly missile attacks on Ukrainian territory.
The Ukrainian Defense Ministry’s Main Directorate of Intelligence (GUR) did not claim responsibility for Rzhitsky’s assassination.
But GUR shared a series of previously unknown details, including the time of the attack (6:00 a.m.), the number of shots fired (seven) and the lack of witnesses due to rainy weather.
It was not immediately clear whether Rzhitsky commanded the Black Sea Fleet’s diesel attack submarine, the Krasnodar, after Russia launched its full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.
Russia’s military has regularly claimed to fire on Ukrainian military targets with submarine-launched missiles, including a July 2022 attack on the city of Vinnytsia far from the frontlines that killed 28 people, including three children.