Russian Mi-28N Night Hunter gunship helicopter crashes in Syria killing both pilots

A Russian helicopter has crashed near Homs, Syria, killing the two pilots on board.

A Russian Mi-28N Havoc combat helicopter, deployed to Hmeymim airbase, near Latakia, Syria, has crashed near Homs on Apr. 11, killing both crew members.

According to the Russian MoD the Night Hunter, a modification of the Mi-28 gunship optimized for night combat operations, was not shot down but crashed for reasons yet to be determined.

The Mi-28N is the third loss for the Russian forces in Syria: on Nov. 24, a Su-24 Fencer was shot down by a Turkish Air Force F-16;  during the CSAR mission launched to rescue the two pilots (one of those was killed by the Islamists rebels), a Mi-8AMTSh Hip helicopter was hit by ground fire and later destroyed. A naval infantry officer was killed.

The Mi-28N and Ka-52 helicopters have been deployed to Syria after part of the Air Group was withdrawn on Mar. 14, to provide close air support to Syrian forces, to protect the Russian Task Force deployed to Hmeymim airbase, near Latakia, as well as to conduct CSAR (Combat Search And Rescue) missions.

Image credit: Yevgeny Volkov

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About David Cenciotti 3629 Articles
David Cenciotti is a freelance journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written four books.