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Watch: Russian Su-25 Pilot lands aircraft after being hit by Ukrainian missile

The pilot of the Russian Su-25 attack aircraft was able to land the plane after being hit by a missile from a Ukrainian man-portable air defence systems (MANPADS), the Russian Defence Ministry said on Monday.

“While performing a combat mission in the special military operation zone, a Su-25 attack aircraft, the second in the pair, was hit by a missile from a man-portable air defence system fired from the ground by a serviceman of the armed forces of Ukraine,” the ministry said.

The ministry released a video of the damaged aircraft landing at the base.

According to the ministry, the pilot of the damaged aircraft, having assessed the situation, decided to turn off the damaged engine and not to eject.

The pilot of the leading plane, Lieutenant Colonel Denis Litvinov, rebuilt, and realizing that his comrade’s plane could not withstand a second missile hit, he covered it with his own plane.

The ministry noted that “thanks to the cool-nerved and skillful actions of the pilot Denis Litvinov, he managed to save the life of his comrade and the combat aircraft, both pilots were presented for state awards.”

The commander of the wing, said that the wingman’s plane was hit during a combat mission after attacking a target. The pilot of the damaged aircraft kept his composure and regrouped forward by command.

Having detected the launch of the second missile, the squadron commander took up a position behind the damaged aircraft and then fired the infrared traps to cover his comrade-in-arms.

The damaged aircraft lost one engine. All electronics, including navigation equipment, failed. Nevertheless, the pilot was not only able to successfully land the plane, but also to clear the runway for other aircraft returning from combat missions to land.

  • Russia launched a military operation in Ukraine on 24 February. Russian President Vladimir Putin called its goal “the protection of people who have been subjected to bullying and genocide by the Kiev regime for eight years”. For this, according to him, it is planned to carry out the “demilitarization and denazification of Ukraine”, and to bring to justice all war criminals responsible for “bloody crimes against civilians” in Donbass.

According to the Russian Defence Ministry, the Armed Forces strike only at the military infrastructure and Ukrainian forces.

With the support of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR) groups are developing an offensive.

But there is no talk of the occupation of Ukraine, the President of Russia stressed.

Russia and Ukraine have already held three rounds of peace negotiations, saying on 13 March that the two sides have made substantial progress compared to when the talks had just started.

In response to Russia’s operation, the Western countries have rolled out a comprehensive sanctions campaign against Moscow.