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Aircraft losses in Angola

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Post 29 Dec 2012, 15:14
I’m busy with research on aircraft piloted by Russian / Cuban / Angolan pilots that were shot down in Angola.

I’m first concentrating on the two Antonovs and two MI-8s that were downed during November of 1980. The first Antanov was shot down on the 11th and the second on either the 20th or the 21st. I’m not sure when the two MI-8s were downed but from an article on * site it seemed one MI-8 was downed when they went to rescue the crew and passengers of the Antanov that were shot down 20/21 November.

Is there anyone on this site with more information ?

*post a link to the article, not the site - Che Burashka
Post 30 Dec 2012, 00:28

According to the above page, written by Soviet military interpreter serving in the Angolan war Sergei Kolomnin who participated in the rescue, all the Soviet crew members and Angolan MPLA soldiers aboard from the AN-26 shot down on the 21st survived, four of them rescued immediately and two imprisoned but later released in a prisoner exchange. There had been 2 Angolan-crewed AN-26s shot down in the two weeks preceding this incident, one going missing and the other's 5-member crew rescued by helicopter without incident.

The plane shot down on the 21st survived by the same method as the one shot down earlier, managing to set down in an opening near a river bank.

Among the three MI-8 helicopters that went to the rescue for the AN-26 shot down on the 21st, one was shot down. They rescued the 4 Soviets and an unknown number of Angolan commandos. Apparently these helicopters engaged with UNITA forces immediately upon coming to the crash site. I'm not sure, but believe that the helicopter that burned up was not filled with people, but rather was one of the two that had landed while a third circled as cover for the other two. Apparently these MI-8s were unarmoured transports, and the ones that made it back were "literally riddled with bullets", but somehow managed to reach the airport intact. The article notes that the Soviet commander back at base sought to send out another rescue operation for the remaining Soviets and Angolans, this time via an armoured advance, but all forces in the area were already committed to fighting insurgents, resulting instead in another sortie, this time by two Angolan-piloted MI-8s, which went to the crash site, but found neither living nor dead (the UNITA forces had moved inland by then and took their prisoners with them).

Learned something new today: The Soviets in Angola were called "kamarada sovetiko".
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