Ukrainian Officials Claim Russia Shot Down Two Fighter Jets

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At 1:30 PM local time, two more planes were struck in the eastern region of Ukraine, the area primarily controlled by pro-Russian separatists, or as Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko referred to them, terrorists. 

Ukrainian Defense Ministry spokesperson Oleksiy Dmitrashkovsky told reporters that two Sukhoi-25 fighter planes were struck in the Savur Mogila area of Ukraine. The jets had just completed a training exercise near the Russian border, Dmitrashkovsky said. Each plane was carrying up to two people. Savur Mogila is just several kilometers from the crash site of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17, which was shot down last Thursday.

The fighter jets were likely taken down with surface to air missiles. A similar plane was shot on July 17th, before the MH17 crash, by an air to air missile. This is a serious hit to the Ukrainian military, as they have limited fighter jets to begin with. 

“We are very concerned that Russia has not pulled back on the flow of heavy weapons,” said U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt, “What needs to happen is Russia needs to stop sending weapons and fighters across the border.”

Ukrainian officials have said both jets were shot down from the Russian side of the border. 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.