Russia plane shot down mid-air as Ukraine showcase military prowess

Ukraine: Russian warplane shot in Donetsk

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Ukrainian forces have shot down a Russian warplane near the city of Bakhmut in the eastern region of the conflict zone despite having only Soviet-era weapons at their disposal. In footage released online, the Russian aircraft can be seen flying low to the ground as two Ukrainian soldiers watch on. A missile is spotted striking the aircraft, before the plane eventually careens into the nearby countryside, exploding as one soldier cries “Yes, yes!”. It comes as reports show Ukrainian soldiers have been using Soviet-era weapons dating as far back as the 1960s to destroy Russian bases and military equipment. 

In a video released by Radio Free Europe, Ukrainian soldiers discussed how they made the most of outdated equipment. 

Asked about the “effectiveness” of their Soviet-era weaponry, one Ukrainian soldier, known as Olha, said: “Fifty-fifty, because it is old. “You can say that it is effective but the new equipment is more effective.” 

Another soldier, discussing his tank, said: “It has already lived life a little. Soviet-era. There are certain nuances to the mechanics. 

“It can go and go as it should and then you have to bang something somewhere, some cable or pipe. In short, everything has a tendency to break.

“The main thing is to repair everything quickly and then everything will be fine.” 

One soldier, an elder man called Serhiy, reported that the tank he was operating, though equipped with a “completely new” bottom and chassis, was from 1986. 

Nonetheless, the Ukrainian forces in the east have destroyed scores of Russian equipment and forced the retreat of thousands of enemy soldiers. 

Another soldier, named Ilya, explained the process of attacking Russian bases using short-range missile launchers and tanks. 

He said: “If we see the enemy, we are told how many there are, if there are tanks or armoured vehicles, and based on that, we are immediately given the coordinates of the target. 

“We hit it, that is not up for discussion. We sometimes shoot 60 or 70 shells a day. Now that the enemy has realised we have such firepower, they have paused [their attack].” 

Bakhmut has been the scene of some of the most lethal and long-lasting fighting of the Russian invasion. 

Ukraine’s 58th motorised infantry brigade, alongside other outfits, have been locked in battle with Russian forces, including members of the mercenary Wagner Group, dubbed “disposable soldiers” by Putin’s Army, for roughly four months. 

Ukraine’s Armed Forces have been using drones to coordinate and monitor in “real time” the effectiveness of strikes from distance. 

But since October, the front lines have remained for the most part stationary, with both forces gaining and losing territory. 


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As the focus of the war shifts to the south, with the battle for the strategic port of Kherson north of Crimea likely to prove seminal to the trajectory of the conflict ahead of winter, Ukraine has been focused on simply holding their lines in the east while trying to limit losses. 

Meanwhile, Russia used drones, missiles and heavy artillery to bomb a number of cities and energy infrastructure facilities this week, killing at least six civilians and wounding a further 16 Ukrianians. 

Over the past day, six cities and villages in the Donetsk region were attacked by heavy artillery, while in the northeast, Ukraine’s second-largest city of Kharkiv was hit by three missiles, officials said.

The city of Nikopol was also shelled, damaging residential buildings, a gas station and several private enterprises, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s office said Thursday.


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