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Tu-95 bomber commander shot in Russia - Ukrainian intelligence

Tu-95 bomber commander shot in Russia - Ukrainian intelligence Russian Tu-95 commander Stegachev shot in Engels (photo:

The crew commander of a Tu-95 strategic bomber was shot in Engels, Russia. It was Major Oleg Stegachev, reports the Defense Intelligence of Ukraine.

"The Defence Intelligence of Ukraine informs that the crew commander of a Tu-95 strategic bomber, Major Oleg S. Stegachev, was shot in the Russian city of Engels," the statement reads.

Major Oleg Stegachev (photo: Defense Intelligence of Ukraine)

According to the intelligence, the said Russian Air Force pilot was born on June 23, 1983, and served at the Engels air base (military unit 06987).

"He was directly involved in launching missile attacks on civilian targets in Ukraine and killing our people. As a result of the attack, Oleg Stegachev sustained gunshot wounds. We are clarifying whether he survived or not," the Defense Intelligence added.

Russian shelling of Ukraine using Tu-95s

Russia is constantly using Tu-95s to attack Ukraine, using the bombers to launch cruise missiles. It is known from open sources that by 2021, Russia had 60 Tu-95MS aircraft. Although, according to Defense Express, the actual number of these Russian strategic bombers is much lower.

Since the first day of the full-scale invasion, Russia has used Tu-95MS to strike Ukraine, particularly in the western regions of Ukraine. Strikes with these bombers resumed last fall and winter, as well as in the summer of 2023. From September 21, 2023, the occupiers paused and did not use these aircraft. However, on December 8, 2023, seven Tu-95MS aircraft launched 19 X-101/X-555 missiles from the Engels area of the Saratov region of the Russian Federation. They were directed at Kyiv and Dnipro region.

Earlier, Russia openly recognized the liquidation of retired Russian Air Force Major General Kanamat Botashev. He was at the helm of the Su-25, which was shot down by the Armed Forces of Ukraine in Luhansk region on May 22, 2022.