Reports earlier today that the Ukrainian government lost contact with an An-26 military transport plane over Luhansk have now transitioned to reports that the plane crashed, apparently shot down.
Defense Minister Valeriy Heletei says they have been contacted by the crew from the plane, which apparently survived, and he says they believe the plane was shot down by Russia.
Details are still scant, but the allegation claims that the plane came under fire from something “more powerful” than the shoulder-carried missiles the eastern rebels have been using, and that they believe it was “probably fired” from inside Russia.
Eastern Ukrainians, largely ethnic Russians, have been rebelling for months, since the ouster of the pro-Russian government by western protesters. The rebellion has added to tensions between Russia and Ukraine, which soared over the weekend with a report of a cross-border shelling by Ukraine killing a Russian civilian.