According to a report in the UK-based Times, a Russian helicopter was observed splitting in two after an attack by Ukrainian forces. According to the article, the Ukrainian military uses the British-made Starstreak missile.
The tail of the Mi28N breaks after being hit by the missile, according to a video of the incident circulating online. According to the New York Times, the chopper was shot down in the Luhansk region of eastern Ukraine.
According to The Times, the report is based on information from insiders in the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, who said the anti-aircraft system had been deployed in the country for about a week.
The Times is reporting that this shootdown of a Russian Mi-28 was by a British Starstreak SAM pic.twitter.com/zsQb1DkQ74
— OSINTtechnical (@Osinttechnical) April 2, 2022
This is the first time the British-built high-velocity missile has been used. Last week, footage surfaced online showing Ukrainian helicopters launching multiple missiles into a fuel storage tank in Belgorod, Russia, followed by an explosion.
With three kinetic darts, the Starstreak is the UK’s most advanced manned portable missile weapon. Thales is the manufacturer.
Last month, British Defence Minister Ben Wallace announced that the UK would supply Ukraine with anti-aircraft missiles to aid in the defence of the country’s skies against the Russian invasion, which began on February 24.
In a declaration to the British Parliament, he called the missile system “essential” for Ukraine. Starstreak is a laser-guided missile designed to take down low-flying enemy jets and assault helicopters at speeds exceeding three times the speed of sound.
Previously, Britain had given tens of thousands of anti-tank missiles to assist stall Russia’s march on Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital. Boris Johnson, the British Prime Minister, has stated that the UK will continue to give defence help to Ukraine, including a new shipment of 6,000 missiles.
Russian forces are now concentrating their efforts in eastern Ukraine, with estimates claiming that 60,000 Russian reservists have been called in to support the offensive.
Russian troops, including mercenaries from the state-linked Wagner private military organisation, were also advancing east, according to British military intelligence.
According to Reuters, shelling pounded the eastern city of Kharkiv on Sunday, killing seven people and injuring scores more, while missiles slammed near the southern port of Odesa, with Russia claiming to have destroyed an oil refinery used by the Ukrainian military. “Critical infrastructural facilities” were hit, according to the Odesa city council.