Just before plane crash in Russia: Eyewitness describes “strange” sighting

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“Several large objects” reportedly fell from the military machine before it crashed in Belgorod. A security expert generally cautions against hasty decisions.

Belgorod – All 74 people on board are said to have died. Allegedly 65 Ukrainian POWs Among Them: The plane crash in Belgorod, Russia, has led to many accusations and speculations. An eyewitness reported seeing a “strange” object allegedly falling from the plane before the crash.

Anton Gerashenko, a former adviser to the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, also spoke. “Several large objects” fell from the Russian military machine, he said Newsweek reported. He did not give any further details.

The American portal also pointed to the report of the Russian Telegram channel “VChK-OGPU”: according to an eyewitness, a “strange” object was “thrown” from the plane “shortly before the crash”, which translates as “thrown”. Newsweek. From Russian. This information could not be independently verified.

Plane crash in Russia: Putin spokesman threatens “consequences” of war in Ukraine

The incident is also a hot topic in Russia. Dmitry Peskov, a spokesman for Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin, called the crash an “absolutely outrageous act”. Russia blamed Ukraine for the incident. “Nobody can tell you what impact this will have on the prospects of extending the process” of prisoner exchanges in the Ukraine war. Peskov said this on Thursday (January 25), according to Russian state news agencies.

View from the crash site of the Ilyushin military transport plane in Russia's Belgorod region © Tass/Imago

Ukraine War: Expert at ZDF classifies plane crash in Belgorod

Security expert Claudia Major has meanwhile warned against hasty conclusions in ZDF “Morgenmagazin”. Two facts are now known, said the head of the Science and Politics Foundation's (SWP) Defense Policy Research Group. “The plane was shot down. And a prisoner exchange was planned, which did not happen.” This is currently “reliable information only.”

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Everything else is so far “speculation”, such as lists of prisoner exchanges. Therefore, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's demand for an international investigation into the cause of the accident is correct.

Plane crash in Belgorod: Claudia Major warns of “propaganda effect”.

Russian news agency Rhea Novosti Ukrainian prisoners of war were on their way to Belgorod on Wednesday for an exchange, the Defense Ministry in Moscow said. “The Russian Armed Forces used radars to track the launch of two Ukrainian missiles,” the ministry said. The plane was shot down from a village near the Ukrainian border in Kharkiv.

War in Ukraine: Military expert Claudia Major in ZDF's “Morgenmagazin” on January 25, 2024
Military expert Claudia Major in ZDF's “Morgenmagazin” on January 25 © Screenshot: ZDF Media Library

SWP security expert Major said the incident made it clear once again that “this war is also taking place outside of information”. Russia is “obviously” trying to wage this war with disinformation. So, be cautious while speculating. The expert emphasized that this incident has not changed anything in the past.

The expert sees above all a “propaganda effect”. Major said the incident was “one more example of how Russia treats Ukrainian prisoners of war”. (AFP with FRS)

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