Ukraine claims to have downed a Russian A-50 surveillance plane

Ukraine claims to have downed a Russian A-50 surveillance plane

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Ukraine claims to have downed a Russian A-50 surveillance plane

An A-50 aircraft during a military parade (file photo). Image: REUTERS


Ukraine claims to have downed a Russian A-50 surveillance plane.

Ukraine’s military says it has shot down a Russian military spy plane over the Sea of Azov, in what observers think would be a setback to Moscow’s air power.

High Command General Valerii Zaluzhnyi of the Army said that the air force had “destroyed” an Il-22 air control centre and an A-50 long range radar detection aircraft. Russian jet target coordination and air defence detection are performed by the A-50.

Relative to Russian forces in the southeast, Ukraine has had difficulty making major recent progress.

Russian six operable A-50s were “likely” in service, according to a briefing from the UK Ministry of Defence on February 23.

The cost of building the planes can reach the hundreds of millions.

Prominent Russian pundits who support war have stated that the loss of an A-50 would be noteworthy, despite Russian officials claiming to have “no information” about the assaults.

According to a well known military channel, Rybar, it would be “another black day for the Russian air force” if the information coming from Ukraine regarding the Russian losses was verified.

different broadcaster said that Russian “friendly fire” had struck the Il-22 command centre. It apparently made it back to Russia.

The air force of Ukraine “excellently planned and conducted” an operation in the southeast portion of the country known as the Azov region, according to General Zaluzhnyi on Telegram.

Mykola Oleshchuk, the commander of the Ukrainian Air Force, made comment on the downing of the aircraft on Telegram, although he did not elaborate.

The opposition group BYPOL in Belarus stated in February of last year that they had destroyed an A-50 military aircraft in a drone strike close to Minsk.

Justin Bronk, an air battle specialist from the defence think tank Rusi, told the reporter that if confirmed the loss of an A-50 would be a “highly operationally significant and embarrassing loss” for Russia’s air force.

His description of the A-50 as a “key command, control and surveillance platform” was that it gives “long range early warning and target information about Ukrainian low flying aircraft” to Russian aircraft and surface-to-air missile systems.

He continued by saying that the Russian air force operated “only a small number” of these aircraft and “even fewer trained mission crews, meaning that the loss of one would be a major blow”.

According to him, if verified, the Ukrainian Patriot air defence missiles would be put through “a very long range engagement” that would push “the theoretical capabilities of the weapon to their limit.”

The apparent change is “small bit of good news for Ukraine amid an awful lot of bad news,” according to a security journalist Frank Gardner.

According to him, things are “not looking good for Ukraine” in general due to ammo shortages, low soldier morale, and ongoing Russian attacks on its infrastructure.

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