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Ukraine lands ‘first-ever hit’ on Putin’s stealth fighter

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28 million

Ukraine’s military claimed responsibility for a significant attack on Vladimir Putin’s advanced Su-57 military aircraft, a twin-engine stealth fighter valued at £28 million and one of Russia’s priciest assets.

Civilian areas

With only a few operational in the Russian air force, the Su-57 was targeted with Kh-59 and Kh-69 cruise missiles, known for their use in striking civilian areas in Ukraine.

Successful attack

This incident marks a potentially historic first successful attack on the Su-57 in Ukraine.

Akhtubinsk airfield

Reports indicate that the plane sustained damage during an assault on the Akhtubinsk airfield in the southern Russian region of Astrakhan, located approximately 400 miles from the conflict zone.

Military intelligence

Ukraine’s primary military intelligence service released satellite images showing the airfield before and after the attack.


The aftermath of the strike revealed black soot marks and small craters scattered across the concrete strip surrounding the Su-57 fighter jet parked on the airfield.

Stealth technology

The Su-57 is Russia’s inaugural fifth-generation fighter, with only a limited number in operation during the conflict. Notably, it is the Russian military’s premier aircraft incorporating stealth technology and features various mechanisms to diminish its radar visibility.

Hefty cost

Russia, the US, and China possess production aircraft of this caliber. Priced at £28 million, it carries a hefty cost, even for the Kremlin, albeit being more affordable than its American equivalent.

Development challenges

Following its maiden flight in 2010, the Su-57 program encountered prolonged development challenges attributed to structural and technical issues before officially joining the air force in 2020.

Drone strike

While the specific weapons utilized in the attack were unspecified, the airfield’s remote location from Ukraine indicates a probable drone strike.

Military aviation

Acknowledging the incident, the pro-Russian Telegram channel Fighterbomber, known for its proximity to military aviation, confirmed the attack, revealing that three drones conducted reconnaissance over the base.

Ukrainian intelligence

‘The defeat of the Su-57 is the first such case in history,’ according to Ukrainian intelligence…

Russian territory

The attack follows recent authorizations from the US and Germany allowing their ally to target specific locations on Russian territory using the long-range weapons provided by these nations.

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