Russian Forces Destroy Ukrainian MiG-29, Air Defenses, and Drone Workshop

Russia strikes Ukrainian military assets, including a MiG-29 jet, as part of ongoing offensive before US aid reaches Ukraine. Zelensky urges swift passage of $60B aid bill to bolster Ukraine's defenses against Russian aggression.

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Mahnoor Jehangir
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Russian Forces Destroy Ukrainian MiG-29, Air Defenses, and Drone Workshop

Russian Forces Destroy Ukrainian MiG-29, Air Defenses, and Drone Workshop

On April 21, 2024, the Russian Ministry of Defense announced that the Russian Armed Forces eliminated a Ukrainian MiG-29 aircraft at the Dnipro airfield, along with air defense systems and a workshop producing Ukrainian drones. This incident occurred as part of the ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, which began with Russia's invasion of Ukraine in late February 2022.

The Russian military released videos showing the destruction of the MiG-29 and the Ukrainian S-300 SAM system, including the 1.5N36S radar and 2 5P85S launchers near Novonikolaivka. The attack was part of Russia's ongoing efforts to strike Ukraine's civilian infrastructure and undermine its morale.

The Institute for the Study of War (ISW) believes that Russian forces are likely to intensify their offensive operations, missile strikes, and drone attacks in the coming weeks before US military aid reaches Ukraine's frontlines. Russian forces have maintained and intensified ongoing offensive operations to exploit dry spring ground conditions and deficiencies in Ukrainian materiel before the arrival of Western security assistance.

However, Russian troops have only achieved tactical successes over the past six months as Ukrainian military supplies and equipment deteriorated, and it is unlikely that Russian forces will now be able to achieve a breakthrough that would rupture the front lines. The ISW assessment states that Russia seeks to make operationally significant gains while Ukrainian defenses remain degraded, but Ukrainian forces may be capable of blunting the current Russian offensive assuming the resumed US assistance arrives promptly.

Why this matters: The ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine has led to a global response, with the West imposing sanctions on Russia and the United States providing significant military aid to Ukraine. The destruction of Ukrainian military assets by Russian forces highlights the mounting tensions and the need for international efforts to resolve the conflict.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky welcomed the passage of $60 billion in aid for Ukraine by the US House of Representatives, but urged Washington to quickly turn the bill into legislation and proceed with the actual transfer of weapons, saying long-range arms and air defense systems were top priorities. "The passage of the bill would send a powerful message to Russia that Washington stands by Kyiv and that it would not be 'a second Afghanistan,'" Zelensky said.

Key Takeaways

  • Russia destroyed a Ukrainian MiG-29 aircraft and air defense systems in Dnipro.
  • Russia aims to intensify offensive operations before US military aid reaches Ukraine.
  • Ukraine's defenses remain degraded, but may blunt Russia's current offensive.
  • The US House approved $60 billion in aid for Ukraine, awaiting passage into law.
  • Zelensky urged the US to quickly transfer long-range arms and air defense systems.