A Russian Ilyushin-76 military transport plane has tragically crashed in the southern Belgorod region, situated along the border with Ukraine. The crash resulted in the loss of at least 65 lives, with the victims identified as Ukrainian prisoners of war, as confirmed by Russia’s Ministry of Defense. Additionally, the ill-fated aircraft carried nine individuals, including six crew members, according to reports from Ria Novosti news agency.
Vyacheslav Gladkov, the regional governor, acknowledged the occurrence of the incident but refrained from providing further details. The crash, captured on video and widely shared on social media, depicted the plane’s descent near the village of Yablonovo, culminating in a devastating explosion. The incident unfolded at approximately 11:00 local time (08:00 GMT), leaving a trail of devastation and sorrow in its wake.
Russian presidential spokesman Dmitry Peskov confirmed the Kremlin’s awareness of the crash but chose not to delve into specific details at this juncture. As investigations unfold, the international community watches closely, grappling with the profound impact of this tragedy on diplomatic relations and the ongoing geopolitical landscape.