Ukraine’s intelligence names number of Tu-22M3 aircraft remaining in Russia
Kyrylo Budanov, Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence Chief, says the threat posed by Russia's Tu-22M3 strategic bombers to Ukraine has diminished following recent operations targeting them, which reduced their ability to launch Kh-22 missiles
He made the statement in an interview with Radio Liberty.
In total, 436 Russian aircraft are involved in air operations against Ukraine.
"This is a lot. But if you ask how many of them are Tu-22s, it will be a few. They had about 31 serviceмяцable Tu-22s, now there are 29, minus 2 more that are under repair, that is, 27. That is, not so many that actually fly," Budanov said.
According to the intelligence officer, as a result of operations at the Russian military airfields of Soltsy, Novgorod region, and Shaykovka, Kaluga region, 2 aircraft were completely destroyed, and 2 more were damaged, "The two damaged bombers will undergo repairs over time, and this should also be taken into consideration."
"We are well aware of the people who did this... these are people who performed certain tasks from Russia’s territory," the intelligence chief added.
Elimination and self-destruction of Russian aircraft
On May 13, 2023, 2 Mi-8 helicopters, a Su-34 and a Su-35 aircraft crashed in Russia’s Bryansk region bordering Ukraine.
On May 17, a reconnaissance aircraft crashed in northern Russia.
On August 7, Ukrainian soldiers from the 47th Brigade "landed" a Russian helicopter in the Zaporizhzhia region. And another one on the morning of August 9.
On August 19, two aircraft Tu-22s catch fire at Soltsy airbase in Novgorod region after alleged drone strike
On August 23, the Ukrainian Security and Defense Forces shot down a Russian military aircraft near Zmiinyi Island that was trying to attack Ukrainian defenders.
Reports surfaced on the Internet on Wednesday, August 23, indicating that a Russian Mi-8 helicopter had landed at a Ukrainian airfield, with the crew surrendering to the Ukrainian military. The Defense Intelligence of Ukraine (GUR) has preliminarily confirmed this information and promised to provide details later.
On August 23, an Embraer business jet carrying the leader of Wagner PMC, Yevgeny Prigozhin, crashed in the Tver region, Russia.
Newsweek reports that over the course of the 18-month full-scale invasion, more than 20% of Russia's recorded losses of manned aircraft and helicopters were not attributed to actions by the Ukrainian Defense Forces. Instead, they were a result of system failures, pilot errors, friendly fire, and other incidents not directly linked to hostilities.