Russia accused Ukraine on Wednesday of deliberately shooting down a Russian military transport plane carrying 65 captured Ukrainian soldiers to a prisoner exchange, and a local official said all 74 people on board had been killed.
If the details are confirmed, it would be the deadliest incident of the almost two-year-old war inside Russia’s internationally recognized borders.
Mykhailo Podolyak, a Ukrainian presidential adviser, told Reuters: “Comments will come a little later. Time is needed to clarify all the data.”
The Governor of Belgorod said there were no survivors
Vyacheslav Gladkov, governor of Belgorod region, said everyone on board the plane had been killed and that the plane had come down in the region’s Korochansky district, northeast of the city of Belgorod.
“They (Ukraine) shot down their own soldiers in mid-air. Their mothers, wives and children were waiting for them. They took a decision and shot down our defenseless pilots on a military transport plane, who were carrying out a humanitarian mission, with American and German rockets,” said Volodin.