Santa Mistaken for Passenger Jet, Shot Down Over Ukraine

KIEV, Ukraine — Ukrainian officials have begun sifting through the wreckage of Santa's sleigh, after it was apparently shot down shortly before midnight local time, sources told Duffel Blog.

The government claims the sleigh was shot down by a Buk surface-to-air missile after being mistaken for a civilian passenger jet, according to a defense ministry spokesman. The sleigh was attacked over Eastern Ukraine, in an area controlled by pro-Russian rebels.

Ukrainian officials accused Russia of orchestrating the shoot-down. Russia denied the claims, citing their own RT news broadcasts as evidence.

According to an RT spokesperson, "Santa was tracked over Russian airspace dispensing Chemtrails, when he strayed into the Ukraine, and was shot down by Ukrainian fighter jets."

When pressed for further details, the spokesperson pointed to several furiously-edited Wikipedia entries posted within the last five minutes.

Adm. Bill Gortney, who commands North American Aerospace Command (NORAD), expressed his deepest condolences to the people of the North Pole, but added, "We've told Santa numerous times to file his ADIZ flight plans and to check his Mode 4 transponder."

Lt. Gen. J.A.J. Parent, NORAD's Deputy Commander, announced that NORAD quickly initiated a preliminary investigation into the incident.

"Radar, the NORAD Elf, was supposed to load the Mode 4 into Santa's transponder,” Parent said, “but he completely dropped the ball.

“Well, thanks for ruining Christmas, Radar!"