Russian Defector Helicopter Pilot Shot Dead in Spain

Mad Weera

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  • Oct 13, 2015
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    28-year-old Captain Maxim Kuzminov seized control of a Russian armored combat Mi-8 helicopter and brought it safely to an airbase in the Kharkiv region in August of 2023


    Andriy Yusov, spokesperson for the Main Intelligence Directorate of Ukraine (HUR), confirmed to Kyiv Post the death of Russian pilot Kuzminov, who seized control of a Russian armored combat Mi-8 helicopter and brought it safely to an airbase in the Kharkiv region back in August of 2023.

    "We can confirm the fact of death," Yusov told Kyiv Post, providing no additional details.

    According to Russian media, Maksim Kuzminov was shot dead, with at least five bullets in his body. He was found in an underground parking lot in the municipality of Villajoyosa, in the province of Alicante, Spain.

    Last August, Ukrainian intelligence conducted a successful operation "Titmouse": Russian pilot Maxim Kuzminov voluntarily brought an Mi-8 helicopter from Russia to Kharkiv region, into the hands of awaiting Ukrainian military intelligence.

    According to HUR, the operation not only involved capturing the Mi-8 helicopter but also acquiring valuable documentation and secret technical equipment.

    The pilot said his motive was opposition to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, saying he didn’t want to be a part of it. In return for conducting this special operation, he was offered security guarantees, new documents, and monetary compensation.

    "The truth is right here. That there are no fascists or Nazis here," he said. "And I am very sorry for what is happening now. The killings, the tears, the blood. People are just killing each other, and that's it. This is the only thing I don't understand, the only thing I didn't want. What is happening now is simply a genocide of the Ukrainian people," Kuzminov said in a documentary published by HUR.

    I do not want to be an accomplice to Russian crimes... Ukraine will win – it's only a matter of time," Kuzminov added.

    According to HUR's documentary, Ukrainian military intelligence facilitated a safe corridor for the helicopter’s flight. However, the pilot sustained injuries during the capture. Two other crew members chose “not to surrender and lost their lives upon landing.”

    The Ukrainian Operation “Titmouse” became the first in this war when the Ukrainian special services managed to capture a new Russian aircraft in combat condition, as well as to lure a high-profile young Russian pilot to their side.

    https://www.kyivpost.com/post/28305

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Synytsia
     

    Mad Weera

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  • Oct 13, 2015
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    A wife of one of his killed crewmates, who were decorated posthumously by Moscow, told Russian television at the time: “If Maksim really did what he did, I hope they find him and kill him.”