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'Go f*** yourself': Ukrainian troops' defiant words to Russian warship before being killed defending tiny island

Ukrainian troops defending a tiny island in the Black Sea reportedly told officials on a Russian warship “go f*** yourself” – before they were killed.

Ukraine says it will posthumously honour the group of border guards who died defending Zmiinyi (Snake) Island during a multi-pronged Russian invasion.

Kyiv said its military lost contact with its forces on the speck of land south of the port of Odessa on Thursday after Russia conducted strikes from air and sea.

Image:
A Russian warship carrying out military drills in the Black Sea in January

A Ukrainian official reported 13 soldiers had been killed and he circulated an audio clip – shared hundreds of thousands of times online – that he and media outlet Ukrainskaya Pravda said was an exchange between Ukrainian and Russian forces.

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“This is a Russian warship. I propose you lay down your weapons and surrender to avoid bloodshed and unnecessary victims. Otherwise you will be bombed.”

“Russian warship, go f*** yourself,” came the reply.

Anton Herashchenko, an adviser to the interior minister, said Russia then began strikes.

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Sky News has not yet been able to independently verify the authenticity of the recording.

Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy promised to decorate the deceased border guards.

“On our Zmiinyi Island, defending it to the last, all the border guards died heroically,” he said.

“But they did not give up. All of them will be posthumously awarded the title of Hero of Ukraine.”

Russia’s defence ministry said on Friday that 82 Ukrainian soldiers on the island had surrendered to them voluntarily. It made no mention of carrying out strikes or inflicting casualties.

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