HUMILIATED Vladimir Putin is reportedly hiding his fleet of Tu-95 strategic nuclear bombers after Ukraine’s stunning drone strikes.
Satellite pictures reveal the Russian President has moved six of the aircraft following the successful attack at the Engels-2 air base.
Russia were ambushed by a drone strike at the Engels-2 air base on Monday[/caption]
Satellite pictures reveal Putin has hastily hidden six of the nuclear bombers following the strike[/caption]
It is unknown where the Tu-95 aircraft have been moved to[/caption]
Volodymyr Zelenky‘s men managed to obliterate two of the terrifying planes at a high-security Russian airbase in the Saratov region.
The move seems to have rattled his red-faced foe Putin, who hastily stowed away half a dozen of his Tu-95 planes, according to Schemes Twitter’s satellite evidence.
On December 4, a total of 21 of the nuclear bombers – known as Bears – were on the ground at the base situated around 460 miles from the Ukrainian border.
But after the apparent early morning strike the following day, sleuths suggest “the number of planes decreased after the explosion.”
“In particular, six Tu-95s are missing,” they added.
Two Russian troops were injured and rushed to hospital after the suspected Ukrainian attack, according to local news.
The incident is believed to have panicked Putin, who swiftly ordered his troops to stash some of the remaining nuclear bombers away.
The Moscow Times reported: “At least six strategic bombers were moved from the base in Engels to an unknown destination.”
It is unclear where they have gone, but the assumption is the aircraft – crucial to Putin’s nuclear strike capability – have been moved out of range of Ukrainian drones.
Schemes correspondent Kyrylo Ovsianyi added: “After the explosions at the Russian airfields of long-range aviation, they began to place planes more carefully there.
“In addition six Tu-95s were moved from Engels-2.”
Footage of Monday’s blast at the airbase used by Putin’s strategic fleet showed a huge flash before the Bears erupted into flames.
Russian forces carried out drills at the airfield on Tuesday evening, suggesting they are concerned further drone strikes could follow.
The super-loud Tu-95s are the only propeller-powered strategic bombers still operational today, and first flew 70 years ago.
The bombers have been used to blast infrastructure in Ukraine with non-nuclear weapons in recent weeks as Putin continues his cruel blitz.
The despot even previously deployed the planes to buzz Britain amid mounting tensions over the Ukraine war.
In February, the Royal Air Force scrambled Typhoon fighters to escort two Bears off northern Scotland.
The UK’s Ministry of Defence were quick to assess Putin’s next presumed move, saying he was “likely to respond by temporarily moving bombers to dispersal airfields”.
Another Russian airfield was also blasted by a suspected Ukrainian drone strike early on Tuesday – dealing another blow to floundering Putin.
Shocking footage showed an explosion and a huge fireball at the military airbase in the Kursk region on the border with Ukraine.
An oil tank was reportedly on fire on the airport – and the blaze was said to still be raging more than ten hours after the attack.
Thick black smoke filled the sky and covered almost 5,500sq ft as more firefighters raced to the scene to control the inferno.
A senior Ukrainian official said the drones were launched from Ukrainian territory – but at least one strike was made with the help of special forces close to the base who helped guide the drones to the target, the New York Times reports.
A fuel truck exploded at the airfield in Ryazan, a base for Russian special forces, after the strike – killing three people and injuring five.
Images also showed significant damage to a nuclear-capable Tu-22M3 bomber.
Russia claims Ukraine has used the Soviet reconnaissance drone Tu-141 called Strizh to mount the string of attacks.
The Russian defence ministry claimed the drones were hit by their air defences – but falling debris caused damage to the aircraft on the ground.
Ukraine’s government has not publicly acknowledged the strikes.
In their latest update from the frontline, the UK MOD suggested Russia have begun extending its defensive positions along its border with Ukraine.
Troops are believed to have nestled “deep inside” the Belgorod region, where new trenches have been dug since April.
The UK security agency warned the moves suggested there is a “realistic possibility” that Putin is organising defence preparations in a bid to extinguish support for Ukraine.
“However, it probably illustrates some Russia decision-makers genuine (but false) belief that there is a credible threat of invasion by Ukrainian forces,” they added.
Footage of the incident showed a flash of light before the explosion erupted[/caption]
A significantly stronger presence of Tu-95s were seen at the high-security airbase prior to the attack[/caption]