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Ukrainian drone downed on Russian soil - governor
30 Jun 2022, 06:13 GMT+10

A Soviet-era Tu-141 was shot down over Kursk region

Russian defense forces have shot down a Soviet-made reconnaissance drone over the southwestern Kursk region, which borders Ukraine, the area's governor reported on Wednesday.

Roman Starovoyt posted on his official social media channel that the unmanned aircraft was a Ukrainian Tu-141 Strizh. It was shot down east of the regional capital Kursk overnight, he added. There were no casualties or damage on the ground from the crash, the official reported.

The governor published photos from the crash site and said Russian authorities were investigating the incident.

First produced in the 1970s, the Tu-141 is a six-ton drone with a range of about 1,000km (621 miles), which places Kursk easily within its reach from most of Ukraine.

Russia has not used the model for over 30 years.

Ukraine inherited several Tu-141s during the dissolution of the Soviet Union. In March, a drone of this type crashed in the Croatian capital Zagreb, after flying through Romanian and Hungarian airspace.

Russia sent troops into Ukraine on February 24, citing Kiev's failure to implement the Minsk agreements, designed to give the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk special status within the Ukrainian state. The protocols, brokered by Germany and France, were first signed in 2014. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has since admitted that Kiev's main goal was to use the ceasefire to buy time and "create powerful armed forces."

In February 2022, the Kremlin recognized the Donbass republics as independent states and demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join any Western military bloc. Kiev insists the Russian offensive was completely unprovoked.


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