A dramatic video has emerged that captures the moment a Russian jet was shot down by a Ukrainian missile in the city of Kharkiv on Sunday amid fierce fighting. According to footage uploaded online and later validated by Ukrainian officials, the Russian Su-25 fighter plane erupts into a massive fireball above the sky of Ukraine's second-largest city.
This comes as Russians struggle to capture two of Ukraine biggest cities --- Kyiv and Kharkiv, while casualties on the Russian side continue to escalate. Over 80 Russian jets have so far been shot down by Ukrainian surface-to-air missiles since the war started 10 days back.
Dramatic video shows the jet erupt into a massive flame after being hit by two SAMs over Kharkiv's city center, before the twisted remnants dropped out of the sky and burst again upon impact with the ground. It was later confirmed by Oleg Synegubov, the regional governor of Kharkiv, and by the Kyiv Independent that the Russian Su-25 aircraft was destroyed by Kharkiv's Air Defense Forces.
According to reports, the jet had just entered the airspace of Kharkiv when a surface-to-air missile was fired that straightaway hit the aircraft bringing it down to the ground in minutes.
Synegubov said the bomber was part of a squadron of five to seven planes that had been hitting Ukraine's second city on a regular basis. As the missile hits the jet and plummets to the ground, residents can be heard cheering and celebrating in the background in one of the two videos that have emerged on social media.
A CCTV camera situated in a building in Kharkiv's city center captured another video of the incident, which shows the sky lighting up as the Russian plane is hit by two missiles. Synegubov also later said that not one but two surface-to-air missiles hit the jet.
Su-25 planes are most commonly deployed to give close air support to ground forces, although they have also been used to perform missile attacks and bombing raids.
Russian Suffers Losses
Ten days into the war, thousands of soldiers and hundreds of tanks and vehicles have been lost by Russia against Ukrainian resistance. The Ukrainian Armed Forces stated on Saturday night that they have shot down 44 Russian planes and helicopters each in the last eleven days, taking the tally to 88.
The latest incident of the Su-25 being shot down comes just a day after several clips surfaced of Russian pilots, who bailed out of their aircraft after being hit by Ukrainian missiles, being detained by territorial defense units.
The Armed Forces Air Command reported on Sunday morning that one Su-25 fighter, two Su-34 fighter-bombers, two Su-30 SM planes, and three helicopters were shot down on Saturday alone.
Russian pilots, some of whom are reported to have bailed from planes shot down by Ukrainian fighter jets the day before, have also been recorded explaining they were only "following orders."
Also, another dramatic footage has emerged on social media that shows one of the Russian helicopters being shot down by Ukrainian territorial defense forces as it made a dangerous low pass over a small town about 25 miles from Kyiv.
The helicopter took a direct hit, bursting into spectacular orange flames from the engine before crashing nose-first onto the earth and exploding.
As far as Sunday's strike is concerned, Ukrainian authorities confirmed that the pilot managed to eject and was now being hunted down by Ukraine's armed forces in Kharkiv.