Russian Il-76 Aircraft Downed by Patriot Missile, US Officials Unofficially Confirm - Reports
16:34 08.02.2024 (Updated: 17:33 08.02.2024)
© Sputnik . Russian Investigative CommitteeDebris are seen at the crash site of an Ilyushin Il-76 military transport airplane of the Russian air forces near the village of Yablonovo in Belgorod region
© Sputnik . Russian Investigative Committee/
WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – US officials privately confirm the accuracy of media reports that Ukraine used a US-made Patriot system to shoot down the Russian Il-76 plane with 65 Ukrainian prisoners of war in the Belgorod region, The New York Times reported on Thursday.
While US officials are still not planning to publicly say what downed the plane, they confirm on the condition of anonymity that initial reports that a Patriot missile was used by Ukraine were accurate, the report said.
Ukraine used a Patriot interceptor provided by one of its European partners to down the Russian cargo plane on January 24, which was initially claimed by Moscow following the incident, the report said.
On January 24, an Il-76 transport aircraft with 65 Ukrainian PoWs being transported for exchange crashed in Russia's Belgorod Region, the Russian Ministry of Defense said. All the PoWs, along with six crew members and three accompanying persons on board, died. Russian military accused the Ukrainian forces of downing the plane.
President Vladimir Putin later announced that the Russian Investigative Committee had determined that Ukraine used a US-made Patriot missile system to bring down the Ilyushin Il-76 plane with the Ukrainian PoWs.