By Lyazzat Karazhanova
Illustrative photoApril 19, a military aircraft fell from the sky in the middle of the day near Balkoudouk village (Kurmangazy District) in Atyrau Oblast. It was probably launched from the Russian military range Ashoulouk, located near the railway station of the same name in the neighboring Russia's Astrakhan Oblast.
"My children were grazing livestock near the village at that moment, said Mansur Kuanyshaliev, a member of the district council and a dweller of Balkoudouk village. Children said they saw a rocket flying over their heads which then fell a few kilometers ahead. A roaring sound was quite strong, then they heard an explosion and a big black smoke ascended above it."
The information provided by the locals has been officially confirmed.
On April 20, the chief of emergency department of Kurmangazy district Mr. Zhamangarin reported to the district akimat (local government) that on April 19 at 18.30pm an unmanned flying device without any identification marks fell on Akkoldeu site, which is about 12km to the north-east of Balkoudouk village. Reps of emergency department, prosecutor's office, police and border service arrived to the impact location.
Reportedly the fallen device was about 12 meters long, with a wingspan of 2.5 meters. When falling the drone broke into three. On its fragments red stars and writings in Russian were seen. The radiation background measured at the place was normal. Explosion caused no damage to animals and people. Drone remnants will be handed over to relevant Russian services, reads the report of the emergency department.
To recall, a similar explosion happened in 2002. Then the rocket from Ashoulouk miliraty range fell to Kirshik site near the village of Balkoudouk. The hole formed in the result of that fall was 19 meters deep and 12 meters wide.