According to the head of state, Ukraine will insist on an international investigation into the crash of the Russian Il-76 plane in the Belgorod region.
The Security Service of Ukraine is investigating all the circumstances of the crash of the Russian military transport aircraft Il-76 in the Belgorod region. Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky said this in his evening address on January 24.
“I called Umerov, Zaluzhny, Shaptala, Budanov and Malyuk – they reported on the situation with the plane and the exchange. It is obvious that the Russians are playing with the lives of Ukrainian prisoners, with the feelings of relatives and with the emotions of our society,” the president said.
Zelensky said that the SBU is investigating all the circumstances of the incident, and the Main Intelligence Directorate is investigating the fate of all prisoners. The head of state also heard from the Commander-in-Chief and the General Staff regarding the use of the Air Force.
In addition, Zelensky ordered the head of the Foreign Ministry to transfer to partners the data on the crash that Kyiv has. The President stressed that Ukraine will insist on an international investigation.
“We need to establish all the clear facts. As much as possible, given that the plane crashed on Russian territory – beyond our control,” Zelensky said.
Il-76 crash near Belgorod: what is known
Let us recall that on January 24, Russian media reported that an Il-76 military transport plane crashed in the Belgorod region of Russia. According to Russian journalists, the plane could have crashed near the village of Krivoy.
Later, the Russian media Readovka stated, citing the Russian Ministry of Defense, that 65 Ukrainian prisoners of war could have been on board the fallen Il-76. The Russian defense department claims that the Ukrainian military were allegedly transported for exchange.
GUR representative Andrei Yusov noted in a media comment that on January 24, Ukraine actually planned to exchange prisoners with Russia. According to him, the information voiced by the Russian side that prisoners of war could have been on the Il-76 plane, which crashed near Belgorod, is now being verified.
The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported in a comment Focusthat the Ukrainian military cannot confirm data about the crash of an Il-76 military transport aircraft in the Belgorod region. The SBU said they do not comment on news of the crash.