Espreso. Global

Victorious news of 728th day of war: Ukraine downs Russia's 7th aircraft in a week, 60 Russian soldiers killed with HIMARS

21 February, 2024 Wednesday

The Ukrainian military has destroyed another Russian Su-34 fighter jet, and the European Union has approved a new sanctions package against Russia

Ukrainian forces destroy over 60 Russian soldiers at training ground in Donetsk region

The Ukrainian Armed Forces allegedly fired two HIMARS missiles at the Russian training ground in the Donetsk region. It is a training ground near the village of Trudovske in the Volnovakha district, Donetsk region. The strike could have killed at least 60 Russians. This was reported by the Russian service of the BBC. Ukraine has not yet commented on this information.

It is noted that at the time of the strike, soldiers of the 36th Guards Motorized Rifle Brigade, whose permanent location is the city of Borzya, Trans-Baikal Territory, were lined up at the range.

"At the time of the strike, the soldiers of the 4th, 5th and 6th companies of this brigade were lined up at the training ground and were waiting for the arrival of the commander of the 29th Army of the Eastern Military District, Major General Oleg Moiseev," the statement says.

"The commanders lined up in a clear field," one of the soldiers who survived the strike said in a video obtained by the BBC.

In total, according to various estimates, including those of the 36th Brigade, at least 60 people could have been killed in the strike.

Ukraine's Armed Forces down another Russian fighter jet — the seventh in a week

The Ukrainian military has destroyed another Russian Su-34 fighter jet. This is the 7th enemy aircraft that the Air Force of Ukraine has downed this week.

"Minus one, let's keep working!" This time I can say that the Su-35 pilot was lucky - he maneuvered out of harm's way and is no longer taking any risks. And the Su-34 crew joins our 'Eternal Flight, Brothers' section. I have good results of objective control so that no one doubts!" wrote Lieutenant General Mykola Oleshchuk, Commander of the Air Force of Ukraine.

Ukraine has found a way to destroy Russian aircraft

While the aggressors have a lot of Russian guided bombs, they have fewer and fewer carriers. This was emphasized by Oleksandr Kovalenko, a military and political observer of the Information Resistance group, on the Espreso TV channel.

"The Russians are already confirming the downing of their aircraft, although they are trying to make it look like friendly fire, that it is their air defense system. What kind of planes are these? These are frontline fighter bombers. They are used to carry out strikes on the front line using guided aerial bombs. They need to fly to drop the guided bombs to the contact line, at a distance of about 30 kilometers. Previously, it was impossible for us to counter these aircraft. Because we did not have air defense systems on the contact line that could have a radius of destruction of more than 15-20 km. The Russians were well aware of this, and that's why they were constantly using the planes," Kovalenko explained.

According to the expert, the Ukrainian Armed Forces have found an opportunity to destroy enemy aircraft on the front line.

"We are already seeing Russian aircraft being destroyed. At the same time, they are being destroyed at distances much greater than their safe 30-40 kilometers. That is, we have found the means and capabilities to destroy aircraft on the contact line. The Russians have at least 10,000 of these aircraft bombs, left over from the Soviet Union. But if the guided bombs are endless, the carriers have their end. Su-34 and Su-35 are a very painful loss for the Russian air force," Kovalenko emphasized.

New European sanctions for Russians

EU ambassadors reach agreement in principle on the 13th package of sanctions against Russia: it will be one of the largest in the history of the EU. As part of it, the EU will impose restrictions on Russian and Belarusian citizens involved in the deportation of Ukrainian children.

President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen shared the information.

"I welcome the agreement on our 13th sanctions package against Russia. We must keep degrading Putin's war machine. With 2000 listings in total, we keep the pressure high on the Kremlin. We are also further cutting Russia’s access to drones," she wrote. 

The Guardian reports that the sanctions project approved by EU representatives included people who participated in the illegal deportation of Ukrainian children to Russia, Belarus, and Crimea. In particular, the sanctions list includes Inna Varlamova, the wife of Sergei Mironov, a State Duma deputy and leader of the Fair Russia - For Truth party. It is noted that the woman adopted a child abducted from an orphanage in Kherson. It is also noted that Varlamova allegedly personally came to the Kherson region, from where she took two children to the territory of the aggressor country. The children's surnames were changed to Mironov, and their place of birth was changed to Podolsk.

The so-called "ombudsman for children's rights'' in Crimea, Marina Peshchanskaya, was also included in the list. She illegally transported children from an orphanage in Melitopol to Sevastopol.

Sanctions were also imposed on Olga Volkova and Dmitry Demidov, who were named in the document as "key persons involved in the forced deportation of Ukrainian children to Belarus and their subsequent illegal adoption by Russian and Belarusian families.”

The sanctions package will be officially approved on February 24, the second anniversary of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

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