Ukraine claims to have shot down second Russian A-50 radar aircraft

Beriev A-50U AEW&C aircraft
Сергея Луценко, Тимофея Никишина / Wikimedia Commons

The Ukrainian Air Force claims to have shot down a Russian Beriev A-50 long-range radar detection aircraft on February 23, 2024.

The incident occurred near Trudovaya Armeniya, a village in the Krasnodar region of the Russian Federation, approximately 205 kilometers from the nearest Ukrainian-controlled territory.

The Beriev A-50, which is built on the framework of the Ilyushin Il-76 transport plane, is equipped with an Airborne Warning and Control System or AWACS rotodome, making it an essential component of the Russian airborne command and control capabilities. It is often considered Russia’s counterpart to NATO’s Boeing E-3 Sentry.

The Ukrainian General Mykola Oleshchouk confirmed the incident through his Telegram account.

On January 15, 2024, the Ukrainian General Staff had already announced that it had shot down one A-50, as well as a command Ilyushin Il-22. The 2024 World Air Forces directory shows that the Russian Air Force has a fleet of 14 A-50 aircraft, making these losses strategically significant.

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