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Facts prove Russian helicopter shot down in South Sudan — Churkin

August 27, 2014, 21:19 UTC+3 UNITED NATIONS
On Tuesday, August 26, Russia urged the UN Security Council to adopt a statement that would condemn the incident and demand guilty persons be brought to justice
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Vitaly Churkin

Vitaly Churkin

© EPA/ANDREW GOMBERT

UNITED NATIONS, August 27. /ITAR-TASS/. The facts prove that Russia’s Mi-8 helicopter crashed in South Sudan was shot down, Russia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Vitaly Churkin said on Wednesday.

“All data says the helicopter was shot down,” he said.

On Tuesday, August 26, Russia urged the UN Security Council to adopt a statement that would condemn the incident and demand guilty persons be brought to justice, Churkin said.

Earlier in the day, the Russian Foreign Ministry demanded an immediate investigation into the crash of Russia’s Mi-8 cargo helicopter in South Sudan.

Three Russian nationals were killed and another one was wounded after their UN peacekeeping helicopter was downed near South Sudan’s restive Bentiu area on Tuesday, August 26.

Stephane Dujarric, a spokesman for the UN secretary general, said the downed aircraft was Mi-8 cargo helicopter contracted from a Russian company.

The sole surviving crew member has received treatment from Medics Without Borders in Bentiu, Dujarric said.

“Communication with the aircraft was interrupted in the afternoon when the helicopter apparently was shot down near the city of Bentiu,” he said.

“The investigation of the tragedy is under jurisdiction of the South Sudanese and Russian aviation authorities. The UN said it was ready to make any contribution to investigating the crash at the request of competent bodies. The UN Secretariat also intends to conduct its own investigation,” the Russian ministry said.

Russian diplomats “are maintaining permanent contacts with the U.N. Secretariat and the U.N. Mission in South Sudan”. “We demand UNMISS and South Sudan conduct an immediate and thorough investigation, bring whoever responsible to justice and take additional measures to ensure security of air operations in South Sudan,” the ministry said.

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