Fearsome Russian Ka-52 attack helicopters have demonstrated their deadly firepower in what Kremlin officials say was a strike on Ukrainian forces.
Footage released by Moscow is said to show the ‘copters – nicknamed ‘Alligator’ – firing missiles at troops concealed in woodland.
The Russian Ministry of Defence said on 3rd April: “Ka-52 attack helicopters of the Russian Aerospace Forces destroyed camouflaged positions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
“Army aviation crews launched guided and unguided missiles in pairs from low altitudes.
“As a result of the combat use of aviation weapons, positions of armoured vehicles of the Armed Forces of Ukraine camouflaged in a wooded area were destroyed.
“The result of hitting targets was recorded by means of objective control.”
Officials added that during the operation, aviation teams also escorted columns of troops, delivered military cargo, and provided air support for ground units.
However, the video does not show any sign of Ukrainian military activity in the strike zone, and the Kremlin does not say where the attack happened.
Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine on 24th February in what the Kremlin is still calling a “special military operation” to “demilitarise and denazify” the European country.
According to Ukrainian reports as of 3rd April, the Russian forces have lost over 18,000 soldiers and officers, including seven generals, 644 tanks, 1,830 armoured combat vehicles, 325 artillery systems, 105 MLR systems, 54 air defence units, 143 warplanes, 134 helicopters, 1,249 vehicles, seven warships, 76 fuel tank trucks, 89 operational and tactical-level UAVs, 24 units of special equipment, and four units of mobile SRBM equipment.
The United Nations’ International Court of Justice in The Hague, the Netherlands, has ordered Russia to stop its invasion and remove its troops from Ukrainian territory.
Ukraine’s President, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, has said that his government is prepared to discuss adopting a neutral status as part of a peace deal with Russia.