UK intelligence: Russia reluctant to unleash its most sophisticated fighter planes over Ukraine due to fears they will shot down

According to the UK’s defense minister on Monday, Russia is reluctant to employ its most cutting-edge fighter planes into Ukrainian airspace out of concern that they would be shot.

‘Very Likely’

The defense ministry reported that Moscow has “very likely” been using Su-57 Felon fighter planes to perform sorties against Ukraine since at least June in its most recent intelligence briefing.

According to the brief, these flights were probably confined to flying over Russian territory and firing long-range air-to-surface or air-to-air missiles into Ukraine.

According to the article, Russia is keeping its aircraft at home in order to “prevent the reputational harm, diminished sale opportunities, and the compromise of key technology which would result with any loss of FELON over Ukraine.”

The fifth-generation supersonic combat jet from Russia with twin engines and a single seat is the most sophisticated.

An aircraft must meet certain technological requirements, such as being able to fly without afterburners at supersonic speeds, in order to be classified as fifth generation.

Other Planes

Five of the planes were reportedly kept at the sole known Felon air base in Russia, in the southern area of Akhtubinsk, according to a satellite picture published by the defense ministry on December 25.

Although there was scant proof at the time, Sergei Shoigu, Russia’s military minister, claimed in August that the Felon had already been utilized “brilliantly” in battle since Russia’s incursion.

Given the possibility of suffering substantial losses, Russia has continued to pursue a cautious strategy while using its air force in the conflict with Ukraine.

In a report released on Monday, the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces stated that from the start of Russia’s extensive invasion of Ukraine.

Other Reports, Evidence

Russian military authorities have said that new prestige weapons like the Su-57 Felon had functioned well throughout the invasion, despite the general underperformance of Russia’s Aerospace Forces in the skies of Ukraine during Russia’s invasion.

Although Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu asserts that the Felon has already been utilized “brilliantly” in battle during Russia’s invasion, there is no evidence to support this assertion.

Defense Minister Shoigu asserted that throughout the course of Russia’s purported “special military operation” the Felon “had proven itself magnificently” in an interview with the state-run Rossiya-1 TV channel.

In answer to a query on the use of the aircraft in battle in Ukraine, Shoigu specifically attempted to emphasize the claimed on-board defenses of the aircraft against air defenses as well as the usefulness of its offensive armament.