Ukraine Says Rebels Shot Down Fighter Jet
TEHRAN (Tasnim) - A Ukrainian fighter jet has been shot down while flying over rebel-held territory in the restive east, as Kiev accused Moscow of supplying rebels with a convoy of rocket launchers.
Ukraine's military blamed pro-Russian separatists of shooting down the MiG-29 jet on Sunday morning, close to the Russian border.
Military spokesman Oleksiy Dmytrashkivsky told Al Jazeera the aircraft was downed in the Luhansk region after carrying out an attack on rebels.
The military said the pilot had ejected and had been found alive and well after a search.
Hours later, Ukraine's military spokesman said a convoy of rocket launchers had crossed over from Russia in the past 24 hours.
Andriy Lysenko accused Russia of sending over three Grad missile systems, and Russian drones of violating Ukrainian air space on 10 occasions.
Al Jazeera's Emma Hayward, reporting from the Ukrainian town of Novotroyitske, said that despite Ukrainian forces making several advances into rebel-held territory, it looked like the separatists still held considerable fire-power.
The flashpoint city of Luhansk is encircled by Ukrainian forces and is reportedly suffering from severe electrical outages and shortages of food and medicine.
Fleeing residents told Human Rights Watch there was no gas and mobile phone coverage in the city, and it was difficult finding drinking water and food.
Donetsk, the largest rebel-held city, is also suffering frequent fighting including shelling.
The city's mayor said at least 10 civilians were killed and eight injured during heavy artillery shelling on Saturday.