Russian media reported that an SU-34 bomber “crashed” while on a sortie over Crimea early on Sunday morning. The £30million jet came down on the border of Roznodelnensky and Krasnoperekopsky districts at about 6am, according to reports. However, Russian military bloggers were not inclined to believe that the plane crashed.
Instead, they were convinced that it had been shot down by one of their own air defence systems.
Commenting on the news, Fighterbomber wrote: “Ah, well yes.
“I will say it once again – our air defence and aviation are not friends.
“Look out aviators – Fear our air defence more than that of Ukraine’s.
“They set you up for capture over their territory. So drop everything and hit the afterburners.
“Shoot at everything there is, as though it is the last time in your life.
“Well f* them, motherf****.”
The Kremlin has deployed S-400 missile units throughout the Crimea as part of its attempts to beef up its air defence capabilities on the peninsula.
It was illegally seized and annexed by the Russian President in 2014, after sending in his army.
Crimea remains a key target for President Zelensky, who has vowed to retake the territory on numerous occasions.
Kyiv’s southern counteroffensive has made steady progress since the government confirmed it was under way two weeks ago.
READ MORE: ‘Your task is complete’ Kyiv seizes control of town on Russia border
The terrain is also proving an obstacle to quick progress, as it necessities infantry only battles.
Glen Grant, a military expert for the Baltic Security Foundation, told Express.co.uk: “The terrain in places is tortuous as there are many concrete lined drainage ditches up to 20m wide and 4-8m deep.
“They are spaced often a kilometre apart. The Russians have mined the ground in-between.
“This creates an infantry only battle as vehicles cannot pass the ditches properly.”
On Monday, a Kremlin spokesman insisted that Russia would achieve its goals in Ukraine.