On Wednesday night, the night sky above Kyiv was lit up by a sudden bright light, prompting public speculation about what had caused it. The incident caused widespread confusion and excitement in the city that has been accustomed to Russian missile attacks.
The Kyiv authorities announced an air alert after an unknown aerial object fell from the sky around 1900 GMT on Wednesday. Although the initial concern was about an attack, the Kyiv administration later confirmed that the information regarding the possible use of enemy aircraft or an air strike with missile weapons was not confirmed.
Theories about what caused the flash included a falling US satellite, a meteorite entering Earth’s atmosphere, and an alien spacecraft. The Ukrainian air force, in charge of air defenses, was not involved.
According to Yuriy Ihnat, a spokesperson for Ukraine’s air force, the flash could have been caused by a meteorite entering Earth’s atmosphere.
“We cannot identify what it was exactly, but our assumption is that it was a meteorite,” he said.
Igor Korniyenko, the deputy head of a control center at Ukraine’s national space agency, also suggested that a meteorite could have caused the flash, but he said there was no sufficient data to determine “the exact nature” of what might have caused it.
Kyiv has regularly been struck by Russian missiles and drones, so initial concerns were about an attack. However, the Kyiv administration later confirmed that the information regarding the possible use of enemy aircraft or an air strike with missile weapons was not confirmed.
Sergiy Popko, the military administration’s chief, referred to Wednesday’s incident as “the fall of an unknown aerial object” and said its glow had “caused excitement and concern among the people of Kyiv.”
Despite the theories about the flash being caused by a falling US satellite or an alien spacecraft, the US space agency NASA ruled out the former, stating that most of the spacecraft was expected to burn up as it entered the atmosphere.
Authorities have urged people not to use the official symbol of the air force to create memes, even though social media is amused by flying saucer memes.