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Ukrainian Navy confirms Russia downed its own Su-27 aircraft over Crimea

by Martin Fornusek March 29, 2024 6:04 PM 2 min read
Illustrative purposes only: A Sukhoi SU-27SMK flies during its flying display at the 46th International Paris Air Show on 17 June 2005 at Le Bourget Airport. (Pierre Verdy/AFP via Getty Images)
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Russian forces accidentally shot down their own Su-27 fighter jet over occupied Crimea due to "heightened combat readiness," Ukraine's Navy spokesperson Dmytro Pletenchuk said on air on March 29.

Russian occupation authorities in Sevastopol reported on March 28 that a Russian warplane "crashed" off the Crimean coast without naming the cause of the incident. The pilot ejected safely and was picked up by rescue services, according to the Russian-installed head of Sevastopol, Mikhail Razvozhayev.

Several Telegram channels claimed that the aircraft was downed by Russian air defenses after it took off from the Belbek airbase in Crimea.

"We can confirm that the aircraft belonged to Russia and that it was destroyed by their own forces," Pletenchuk said on television.

"They (Russian forces) were on alert and in heightened combat readiness. Then the human factor came into play," the spokesperson said.

Pletenchuk commented that "somebody really wanted to get a medal for shooting down a plane" and "didn't bother to figure out" whose aircraft it was. The spokesperson said that the pilot survived, confirming the claims of Russian authorities.

Russia's Air Force suffered particularly heavy losses in late February and March, losing more than a dozen warplanes, including Su-34 fighter bombers, Su-35 fighter jets, and a rare A-50 military spy plane.

Ukraine destroyed 13 Russian military aircraft in 2 weeks. How?
Ukraine reported the downing of 13 Russian warplanes within the last two weeks, among the highest Russian Air Force losses since the early days of the full-scale invasion. This list includes 10 Su-34 fighter bombers, two Su-35 fighter jets, and one more rare A-50 military spy plane. Another A-50 ai…
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