Ukrainian forces shot down a Russian Su-25 aircraft in the afternoon on Jan. 17 with surface-to-air missiles, the Ukrainian Air Force reported.
The Su-25 aircraft was downed in the area of Soledar, a town located about 20 kilometers north of Bakhmut, where fierce battles are ongoing between Ukrainian and Russian forces. Both towns are located in Donetsk Oblast.
Serhiy Cherevaty, a spokesman for the Eastern Military Command, said on Jan. 16 that over the past day, Russian troops had shelled Bakhmut 259 times. Cherevaty also said that Soledar had been shelled 134 times.
Russia claims it has captured Soledar, but Ukraine continues to deny the claim.
Capturing Soledar would help Russia approach Bakhmut from the north, but an encirclement is still a distant goal for Moscow despite confirmed advances in the town, the Institute for the Study of War said in an assessment on Jan. 7.