Censor.NET reports citing the press service of the Ministry of Defense.
"Ukrainian servicemen evacuated the Mi-24 helicopter belonging to the Army aviation brigade during the antiterrorist operation activities. The aircraft committed forced landing last week after being fired by the terrorists,"- the report says.
The helicopter was forced to land in a field between the Ukrainian Army checkpoint and the militants' positions close to Semenivka village. The Ukrainian soldiers immediately evacuated the helicopter crew, but they had to leave the rotary wing aircraft. One of the Army units was guarding it all this time.
"Preparations of the evacuation continued several days. The Ukrainian military convoy, which had a heavy crane to evacuate the aircraft, was ambushed and was fired while moving to the landing cite on June 13. Seven soldiers were wounded during combat. The fact that the terrorists intensively fired the crane indicates that the ambush was planned well in advance," the Ministry of Defense says.
The terrorists started firing mortars during the ascent of the helicopter from the field to the road. The Mi-24 helicopter was evacuated due to professional counter fire of the Ukrainian soldiers.
The MANPAD shot hit the top of the chopper, damaging the engine. This became clear after aircraft inspection. It will take a week to return the aircraft to service, the military aviators say.