Ukrainians bring down Russian helicopter with guided missile
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Seen through a small screen, a Russian Kamov Ka-52 “Alligator” attack helicopter was targeted by Ukrainian forces. The aircraft was captured flying through the air before it was shot down by a Ukrainian Stugna-P anti-tank guided missile. The successful Ukrainian hit sparks further concerns for Russia as it struggles to secure some semblance of victory before its annual holiday on May 9.
Due to a shortage of precision-guided munitions, Russian aircraft have been forced to fly low and slow in Ukraine.
The pilots have been unable to use cloud cover as a result and have had to fly within just a few miles of Ukrainian troops.
This has left Russian aircraft highly vulnerable to attack as estimates suggest hundreds of planes and helicopters have been downed.
The Russian Kamov Ka-52 “Alligator” attack helicopter is the latest victim of low-flying assault.
It comes as US speaker of the house Nancy Pelosi became the latest western official to make a surprise visit to Kyiv.
In a short video published by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, Ms Pelosi thanked Ukraine for “fighting for freedom”.
She said: “We believe we are visiting you to say thank you for your fight for freedom.
“Your fight is a fight for everyone. So our commitment is to be here for you until the fight is done.”
Meanwhile, the governor of Kharkiv, Ukraine, has warned residents to stay inside and underground over reports of heavy Russian shelling.
Oleh Synyehubov said: “In connection with the intense shelling, we urge residents of the northern and eastern districts of Kharkiv, in particular Saltivka, not to leave the shelter during the day without urgency.”
It was reported on Saturday that one person was killed and five injured after “enemy artillery and mortar strikes” hit the city, according to Kharkiv’s regional military administration.
But despite the bombardment, Mr Zelensky said the Ukrainian military had had “important tactical successes” in the Kharkiv area.
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And in the besieged city of Mariupol, reports suggest that a civilian evacuation deal with Russia might come to fruition.
Roughly 1,000 Ukrainians are thought to be sheltering underground in the Azovstal steelworks as Russia continues to bomb the city.
A fighter taking cover inside the works said on Saturday that around 20 women and children had managed to escape.
Sviatoslav Palamar said: “We are getting civilians out of the rubble with ropes – it’s the elderly, women, and children.”
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